In an attempt to keep this year's Thanksgiving stress to a minimum, we set out to find the best mail-order smoked turkey. The clear winner of our tasting was the Willie Bird; we had mixed opinions about the other two.
Willie Bird Smoked Turkey
staff comment "Very natural turkey flavor—juicy, tender and not too much smoke."
interesting bite Each year, the Willie Bird ranch in Sonoma County loses 500 of its free-ranging turkeys to coyotes and eagles. 877-494-5592; 800-541-2233
Nueske's Applewood Smoked Turkey
staff comment "Moist, with a nicely balanced flavor, but a bit too heavy on the salt."
interesting bite Nueske gives away three prizes a month: a ham, bacon and a Nueske Breakfast Trio. Go to www.nueske.com for details.
Nodine's Whole Smoked Turkey
staff comment "Juicy, with mild smokiness, but tastes just like ham."
interesting bite Nodine's also sells dog treats, such as smoked beef bones and pig's ears. (800-222-2059)