Takeout review: Turk’d Up at The Yard | Restaurant Reviews | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

Takeout review: Turk’d Up at The Yard

click to enlarge CP PHOTO: MAGGIE WEAVER
CP Photo: Maggie Weaver
The Gobblerito from Mad Mex may be the most famous Thanksgiving-themed food in Pittsburgh. Still, plenty of other restaurants offer their own takes on the classic, calorie-loaded seasonal meal.

After a slightly-disappointing encounter with the Gobblerito last Thanksgiving, I decided to try another iteration this year: The Yard’s Turk’d Up, a Texas toast, cheddar layered grilled-cheese stuffed with turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, gravy, and corn, and paired with a side of cranberry cobbler.

There was no way for The Yard to make the Turk’d Up look appetizing; it’s a beige landscape of foods, save the pale yellow corn. When the sandwich arrived at my table, gravy was gooping out the sides and onto the plate, pooling at the bottom of the thick Texas-toast base.

I sliced the sandwich in classic grilled cheese style — a diagonal cut right through the middle — which spilled all of the mashed potatoes and gravy, loosely stacked in the sandwich, out from the edges of the toast.

Though it was messy, slicing the Turk’d Up was, I decided, a good call. It forced the less-solid components out, allowing them to act more as a sauce, and kept the bread from getting too soggy (the bottom slice was quite soft from the start). I was able to avoid big, goopy piles of gravy sitting on my sandwich.

The turkey was almost undetectable when matched with the hefty slab of stuffing that layered the sandwich’s bottom. It was thick enough that, before I even bit into my Turk’d Up, I thought the stuffing was a turkey burger patty. I eventually ripped the pieces of toast apart and treated it like an open-face sandwich to spread out the stuffing’s reach.

Overall, to my biggest surprise, pairing a grilled cheese with Thanksgiving wasn’t as disconnected of an idea as I expected. The crispy edges of the toast were a nice contrast to the soft insides, and slabs of cheddar cheese gave a little punch to the mellow flavors. The worst part was not the sandwich at all, but the cranberry dessert — it tasted like a candle.

But, like any good holiday meal, the sandwich (even just half of it) put me right to sleep. If you’re heading for your first Turk’d Up, make sure you have a pillow and blanket nearby, with time in your schedule for an afternoon nap.

The Yard. Multiple locations. theyardpgh.com

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