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Chinese New Years Banquet - where and how?

z
Zoralda Feb 16, 2007 10:52 AM

If a hound wanted to have a New Years feast at a good Chinese restaurant this weekend (or later, if it would still be possible), how would she go about it? and where? Do restaurants offer special menus? do you have to make a reservation for a banquet and can you do that? Or can you just walk in? Do they have banquets at the standard chow-recommended places, Peach Farm or Chilli Garden for instance? Is one type of regional cuisine more inclined towards such things? Do you have to go at night? And how many people would you ideally have for the project? Any and all input on this delightful subject would be appreciated!

Thanks!

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  1. davidclo RE: Zoralda Feb 16, 2007 11:31 AM

    Chili Garden in Medford has their normal menu. We were there last year and that's our plan again this year.

    1. Rubee RE: Zoralda Feb 16, 2007 12:00 PM

      We've done a few NY banquets at Peach Farm (making arrangements ahead with Tom - owner's son?). GalleyGirl's excellent reports should give you some great ideas:

      2002 - http://www.chowhound.com/topics/141838

      2003 - http://www.chowhound.com/topics/144040

      2004 - http://www.chowhound.com/topics/146996

      2005: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/150546

      8 Replies
      1. re: Rubee
        c
        chezchristine RE: Rubee Feb 16, 2007 04:19 PM

        Thanks for the detailed descriptions, they sound great. Trying to put together a dinner there myself.

        About how much per person do these special banquets run at Peach Farm? And do they do tables of 10 or larger? Also, are these single orders of each dish, or do they scale up according to the number of people?

        1. re: chezchristine
          s
          Spike RE: chezchristine Feb 16, 2007 04:44 PM

          Most of them have a banquet style menu (i.e., they choose a 6-10 dishes for you) that are enough for 10 people (usually how many fit around one of those round tables). The pre-designed menus are arranged by price. This isn't necessarily a new year's thing...

          1. re: Spike
            c
            chezchristine RE: Spike Feb 17, 2007 07:14 AM

            I'm very familiar with Chinese banquets (I am Chinese), but wanted to know if Peach Farm specifically has tables that can fit 10, as I know some smaller Chinese restaurants cannot. I am also looking for the price for the New Year's banquets listed above, as they are specially designed menus and not part of the usual pre-designed ones.

            1. re: chezchristine
              Rubee RE: chezchristine Feb 17, 2007 08:25 AM

              Yes, we've always sat at a large round table with its lazy susan that fits at least 10. I'd suggest calling for specifics and prices since our menus varied slightly every year. I didn't do Chinese NY last year, so I can't remember the previous average price per person; hopefully a 'Hound that does will chime in. And yes, each course is a single dish/platter - sized appropriately for the number of people to share.

              1. re: chezchristine
                s
                Spike RE: chezchristine Feb 17, 2007 02:51 PM

                Yep, we've had dinners there w/ more than 10 at a table even. I didn't know they had a special new year pre-designed menu :-)
                Only negative about Peach Farm is you're expected to leave after you've eaten or they can get pretty testy. We hung out chatting w/ friends one time and the waiter actually came by picked up the check and slammed it on the table. Weirdest thing I've ever seen. A simple "we're a bit backlogged at the moment, so could you please leave a bit sooner" would have been more polite...

                1. re: chezchristine
                  c
                  chezchristine RE: chezchristine Feb 17, 2007 04:33 PM

                  I went into Peach Farm today and spoke to someone named Jerry there, he was very helpful. They can seat up to 14 people at their large table, you just have to book beforehand.

                  The boneless chicken stuffed with sticky rice and Chinese sausage is about $30-36- it is the only thing that you need to preorder a day in advance. If you order a lot of courses (about 1 per person), you don't need to scale up- one order of each item is enough, as it becomes more of a tasting at that point.

                  They are also now serving the traditional New Year's item of Irish moss, served with lettuce and dried oysters. Don't remember the exact price, but it was less than $20. You do not have to preorder this dish.

                  I'll try to report back after the big meal!

                  1. re: chezchristine
                    Rubee RE: chezchristine Feb 17, 2007 07:19 PM

                    Thanks so much for the update, and looking forward to your report!

                    PS - great blog.

                    1. re: chezchristine
                      yumyum RE: chezchristine Feb 18, 2007 08:10 AM

                      Definitely get the chicken stuffed with rice -- it's always my favorite dish of the banquet.

            2. Aromatherapy RE: Zoralda Feb 16, 2007 01:10 PM

              Beijing Star in Waltam has a special (additional) menu, which I had posted as through 2/8 but now realize oops, she must have said ends 2/18.

              Chilli Garden had a special menu a few years ago but not lately. But some of those items are now on their (recently revamped) regular menu.

              I assume any of the better places would work with you if you had a decent size crowd and went in to make advance arrangements.

              1. p
                powella RE: Zoralda Feb 17, 2007 03:48 PM

                In case anyone's interested in something a bit more subdued, Cha Fahn in JP is doing a dim sum dinner on Sunday the 18th, starting at 5pm. Today I stopped in and they told me they are taking reservations, and that they are already starting to fill up. We were able to get reservations for three people at 5:30. Looks like the recent renovations served to add more seating.

                1. c
                  chompie RE: Zoralda Feb 18, 2007 11:06 PM

                  China Pearl is doing dim sum til 3pm on Monday the 19th in Woburn, so I assume Boston too.

                  1. j
                    jenga RE: Zoralda Feb 19, 2007 07:11 AM

                    i've been going to east ocean city for chinese new year's for a few years, and i think they do a great job. they have a banquet menu with set menus, so we usually gather a group of 10 or so and order one of the seafood-dominant sets. these menus are available year round, and i had my rehearsal dinner there. i usually go the week after new year's when it's not so crazy, but the food is just as good.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: jenga
                      j
                      jenga RE: jenga Mar 9, 2007 07:59 AM

                      i went back for new year's this year, and i was surprised when we received our bill. $380 before tax/tip for a 10-person, 10-course meal. of course, that's still an incredible deal, but the prices have definiely gone up in the last year or so.

                    2. b
                      benzelig RE: Zoralda Feb 19, 2007 08:15 AM

                      Green Tea Newton

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