Don’t want to cook on Christmas Day? Besides fast food, your options for eating out might be limited to hotels. But as any fan of “A Christmas Story” can tell you, the one thing you can find is Chinese food. Your best bet might be to eat out on Christmas Eve and order a catered meal in advance for Christmas Day. Here are some options:
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▪ China Star, 196 North Martin Luther King Boulevard, will be open Christmas Eve and Christmas Day 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Call 859-258-9040.
▪ Denny’s, 1949 Nicholasville Road and 1880 Newtown Pike, open 24 hours both Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. That’s a good excuse to get its raspberry white chocolate holiday pancake, if you needed one.
▪ Waffle House, all locations, open 24 hours both days.
▪ IHOP, 2306 Palumbo Drive and Regency Center, open 24 hours both days.
▪ JW’s Steakhouse at Marriott Griffin Gate is open Christmas Eve with the regular menu and breakfast buffet; and Christmas Day it will have the regular breakfast buffet until 10 a.m. and a special brunch buffet 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. that is $30 for adults; $18.95 for children 5 to 12, and free for children 4 and younger. Regular dinner service in the evening. Reservations are recommended, 859-288-6155.
▪ Hyatt Regency’s Blue Fire Bar and Grill is open Christmas Eve and Christmas Day from 6:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. serving the regular menu. Reservations no required.
▪ The Hilton Downtown’s Triangle Grille will be open on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. On Christmas Day, it will offer a special dinner from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. for $30, including carved turkey or ham and sides, with the sweets station for an extra $7. A regular menu is available. Call 859-281-3773 for reservations.
For Christmas Eve or catering, try:
▪ CRÚ Food and Wine Bar, 107 Summit at Fritz Farm, is open noon to 10 p.m. on Christmas Eve by reservation only. They will be serving a three-course meal for $40, with choice of appetizer, entree and dessert, including filet mignon, braised short ribs, seared sea scallops, pan-roasted chicken piccata or herb-crusted branzino. Menu also available a la carte. Call 859-971-9463 for reservations.
▪ Good Foods Co-op, 455 Southland Drive, will be open Christmas Eve 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. with brunch all day. Closed Christmas Day. The co-op often has grab-and-go items for holiday dinners, too.
▪ On Christmas Eve, Palmers Fresh Grill, 161 Lexington Green Circle, will serve Sunday brunch from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and dinner from 4 to 8 p.m.
▪ Also on Christmas Eve, Smithtown Seafood, 501 West Sixth Street, will wrap up 12 days of seafood specials ($12 each day, beginning Dec. 13) with Smithtown’s famous poached eggs and Hollandaise on sautéed lump crab cake.
▪ Alfalfa, 141 East Main Street, is giving back to the community with special charity brunches. From 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Dec. 23, 15 percent of all proceeds will benefit God’s Pantry Food Bank. On Christmas Eve, brunch will benefit Ronald McDonald House. AlfalfaRestaurant.com.
▪ J. Render’s BBQ, 3191 Beaumont Centre Circle, will be open until 5 p.m. Christmas Eve and is taking orders for catering, including a complete holiday dinner smoked whole turkey, smoked carving ham, yellow squash casserole, sweet potato casserole, corn pudding, broccoli casserole, dressing and more. Email Gwyn at email@example.com for information. Call 859-533-9777.
▪ Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, 2220 Elkhorn Road, will be open 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. Christmas Eve but is closed on Christmas Day. The Winchester Road store is taking “heat-and-serve orders” for catering for pickup Friday or Saturday. The menu is available online, and it feeds up to 10. Call 859-293-2555. The Cracker Barrel on 1927 Stanton Way off Newtown Pike also is open Christmas Eve but closed on Christmas Day.
▪ Grimaldi’s Pizzeria, 110 Marion at the Summit at Fritz Farm, is open Christmas Eve from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Christmas Eve. Call 859-523-7503 for reservations. You can also order online at grimaldispizzeria.com
▪ Shake Shack, 115 Summit at Fritz Farm, is open Christmas Eve 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. and for a limited time only you can get three special holiday shakes: chocolate peppermint, Christmas cookie and frozen hot cocoa.