8 Places to Order Your Thanksgiving Turkey

Butchers and farm markets stop taking orders this week, so better get your bird.

By: Anna Spiegel

Be sure to order your bird before its too late. Photograph courtesy of Shutterstock.

Forget mass-produced gobblers: There are plenty of heritage, organic, and locally grown turkeys available for your Thanksgiving table. Many of them are raised in a humane fashion, and their meat tends to be richer and more flavorful, especially in the case of heritage birds, which can taste similar to wild turkey. The deadline for specialty orders is this week, so call any of the spots below to secure yours.

The Butcher’s Block

The birds: Kelly Bronze from Virginia—a breed of heritage bird originally prized in England, but available from Virginia for the first time—and Murray’s all-natural turkeys from Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

Price: $11.95 per pound for the Kellys, $6.50 per pound for Murray’s

Order by: Wednesday, November 14

Pick up: On or before Wednesday, November 21

Be thankful for: A one-stop shop. Robert Wiedmaier’s market carries feast-friendly wines and side dishes like stuffing and green beans.

Eco-Friendly Foods

The birds: Locally grown Old Country Broadbreasted and one of five breeds of heritage turkeys, such as Blue State and Spanish Black.

Price: $6 per pound for Broadbreasted; $8 per pound for heritage

Order by: Drop by the stand at the Arlington (Saturday) or Dupont Circle (Sunday) Freshfarm market, or call Colin Boggess at 540-525-6888.

Pick up: At the markets the weekend before Thanksgiving (November 17 and 18)

Home Farm Store

The birds: The local, organic Ayrshire farm in Upperville, Virginia, supplies the nearby market with heritage white turkeys, as well as smaller Midget Whites and the Ayrshire White, a hybrid heritage breed.

Price: $125 for a 10-to-11-pound heritage white; $85 for the 8-to-10-pound smaller version; $225 for an Ayrshire, which run 20 to 25 pounds

Order by: There’s no deadline, but the shop expects to sell out.

Pick up: On or before Wednesday, November 21. If you want to guarantee a bird, call before you arrive.

Be thankful for: Plenty of materials for your Thanksgiving feast—think fresh sausages, bacon, produce, and more, plus bacon doughnuts if you go on the weekend.

Let’s Meat on the Avenue

The birds: Amish free-range and Kelly Bronze.

Price: $9.95 per pound for Kellys

Order by: Friday, November 16

Pick up: On or before Wednesday, November 21

Be thankful for: Additional cooking ingredients. The Alexandria butcher also carries the likes of Amish butter, Nueske’s slab bacon, and caul fat for wrapping the turkey.

The Organic Butcher

The birds: Virginia-bred Kelly Bronze, certified organic turkeys from Wisconsin, and locally raised free-range gobblers.

Price: $9.99 per pound for Kellys; $4.49 for the Wisconsins; $3.49 for locals

Order by: Friday, November 16

Pick up: On or before Wednesday, November 21

Be thankful for: Stuffing. The shop carries sage sausages and bread stuffing to accompany your turkey.

Smucker Farms

The birds: Bourbon Reds from Lancaster, Pennsylvania. The turkeys forage on farms and in woods instead of being fed by farmers, lending them a different taste.

Price: $7.75 per pound

Order by: Wednesday, November 14

Pick up: On or before Wednesday, November 21

Be thankful for: Tasty fresh stocks and sausages that are sold in the butcher case, perfect for stuffing.

Society Fair

The birds: Heritage turkeys from Fields of Athenry Farm in Purcellville, Virginia, that clock in around 16 pounds.

Price: $8 per pound

Order by: Friday, November 16

Pick up: On or before Wednesday, November 21

Be thankful for: A whole catering menu if you want to cut a few (or more than a few) corners.

Stachowski’s

The birds: Amish heirloom gobblers from Pennsylvania, which range from 16 to 18 pounds.

Price: $6.30 per pound

Order by: Sunday, November 18, at 6 PM

Pick up: On or before Thanksgiving day at 2

Be thankful for: Jamie Stachowski will cover the work of brining your bird before pickup for a small additional fee.