For one reason or another, home-cooked meals will not part of every Arkansan's Christmas. Luckily, various Central Arkansas restaurants will be providing pick-up and dine-in options to fill the gap.
With Christmas Eve on a Friday and Christmas on a Saturday this year, it's likely that more places will be open even in the midst of a pandemic than otherwise might.
However, we recommend double-checking to avoid disappointments before venturing out; most, if not all, of these places strongly recommend making reservations. And remember that we're still in the midst of a pandemic, and situations are subject to change with very little notice.
CHRISTMAS DINNER PREP PICK-UP
We suspect there are more restaurants and caterers prepping Christmas dinner for the cooking-challenged or uber-busy, but there are the two we've actually seen:
Delta Biscuit Co., food truck, (501) 551-2177, deltabiscuitco.square.site: Christmas brunch, featuring cinnamon-roll monkey-bread and bourbon-pecan monkey-bread biscuits; veggie and ham breakfast casseroles; sweet potato and pork belly hash; biscuit-based French toast and cranberry orange French toast; frozen biscuits; and sausage and chocolate gravies. Orders must be in by Tuesday; pick up 3-6 p.m. Dec. 23 or 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Dec. 24.
Petit & Keet, 1620 Market Street, Little Rock, (501) 319-7675, family feasts featuring roasted prime rib with sides and desserts. Place orders by 9 p.m. Saturday; pick up noon-5 p.m. Dec. 23 or 9 a.m.-noon Dec. 24.
OPEN CHRISTMAS EVE
Allsopp & Chapple Restaurant + Bar, 311 Main St., Little Rock, open normal hours (4-10 p.m.) on Christmas Eve. Reservations recommended. (501) 902-4911
Arthur's Prime Steakhouse, 16100 Chenal Parkway, Little Rock: Three seatings, at 5, 7 and 9 p.m. (501) 821-1838
Capital Bar & Grill, Capital Hotel, 111 W. Markham St., Little Rock, (501) 374-7474. Four-course Christmas Eve dinner (Beau Soleil oysters, brasied short-rib ravioli, seared Chilean sea bass, Black Forest cake) in One Eleven at the Capital, seatings every half-hour from 5:30-8:30 p.m., $95, reservations only, opentable.ca/r/one-eleven-at-the-capital-little-rock
Doe's Eat Place, 1023 W. Markham St., Little Rock: open Christmas Eve, 10 a.m.-midnight, for tamale-only pickups. (501) 376-1195
The Faded Rose, 1619 Rebasamen Park Road, Little Rock: open 11 a.m.-9 p.m. (501) 663-9734
Fassler Hall, 311 E. Capitol Ave., Little Rock: open 11 a.m.-6 p.m. (501) 246-4757
Four Quarter Bar, 415 Main St., North Little Rock, open 3 p.m.-midnight. (501) 313-4704
Gadwall’s Grill, 7311 North Hills Blvd., Sherwood: open 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Christmas Eve. (501) 834-1840
Guillermo’s Gourmet Coffee, Village at Pleasant Valley, 10700 N. Rodney Parham Road, Little Rock. Open 7 a.m.-5 p.m. (501) 228-4448
Hungry Howie’s Pizza, 10300 N. Rodney Parham Road, Little Rock. Open 11 a.m.-8 p.m. (501) 500-9595
K Hall & Sons Produce, 1900 Wright Ave, Little Rock, open 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Christmas Eve. (501) 372-1513
Milano's Italian Grill, 6100 Stone Road (at Cantrell Road), Little Rock: open 11 a.m.-9 p.m. (501) 367-8255
Roma’s Italian Restaurant, 2126 N. First St, Jacksonville, open until 8 (501) 241-1632
The Root Cafe, 1500 Main St., Little Rock, (501) 414-0423, open until 2:30 p.m.
Sauce(d) Bar and Oven, 11121 N. Rodney Parham Road, Little Rock: open 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Christmas Eve. (501) 353-1534
Star of India, 301 N. Shackleford Road, Little Rock: open 11 a.m.-2:45 p.m. and 5-10:30 p.m. (501) 227-9900
Stone's Throw MacPark Brewpub, 402 E. Ninth St., Little Rock, open 4-10 p.m. Christmas Eve, with traditional "Christmas Eve Karaoke" singalong at 6 p.m. (501) 244-9154
YaYa's Euro Bistro, Promenade at Chenal, 17711 Chenal Parkway, Little Rock, 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Reservations a must. (501) 821-1144
OPEN CHRISTMAS DAY
Black Bear Diner, 2724 Lakewood Village Drive, North Little Rock: 6 a.m.-8 p.m. Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, offering three-course holiday dinners or as Family Meals to Go — for Thanksgiving, it was prime rib, holiday ham or roasted turkey, with sides and dessert. (501) 812-0393
Capital Bar & Grill, Capital Hotel, 111 W. Markham St., Little Rock, (501) 374-7474. Open 4-9 p.m., regular menu.
Fantastic China, 1900 N. Grant St., Little Rock: open 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m. Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, (501) 663-8999
Taj Mahal, 1520 Market St., Little Rock, open 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m., 4-9:30 p.m. Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. (501) 520-4900
CHRISTMAS AT CHAINS
Denny's, 24/7, including Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, but it's a good idea to check ahead.
Domino's Pizza, hours and status may vary.
IHOP, usually open Christmas Eve and Christmas Day; hours may vary.
McDonald's, open Christmas Eve for sure, but Christmas Day is not guaranteed; hours may vary.
Starbucks, some outlets will be open.
Waffle House, of course, is open 24/7/365, but in mid-pandemic, staffing problems could curtail hours.
Are we missing a restaurant? Email reporter Eric Harrison at firstname.lastname@example.org.