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50th birthday dinner for an Ex. Exec. Chef

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I am torn with all the great choice NYC has to offer for my big 50th Birthday dinner with friends. We will be a small party of 4 - 6 people.
I have a incredible bottle of Vintage Champagne that I would love to pop at dinner.
I worked as a professional chef in Miami, Dallas and LA before changing careers and landing in NYC about a year ago.
Any suggestions will be welcome
So far we are considering either Gotham or Daniels ?
any better ideas?

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  1. I would recommend instead: Aureole, Bouley, Danube or Eleven Madison Park. They're all great restaurants to celebrate a special occasion. Aureole is my choice for my 50th birthday in two years.

    1. Eleven Madison Park would be my pick. Chef Daniel Humm's French-inspired cuisine is sensational, and just this morning, he was nominated for a James Beard Award in the category of Best Rising Star. They have an excellent wine list, but if you want to bring along that Champagne, I believe their corkage charge is a reasonable $25. Service is friendly and professional, and the space is gorgeous! Overall, in my view, a perfect place to celebrate a very special occasion.

      Happy 50th Birthday and Bon Appetit!

      1. Daniel. If you have never been, IMHO the top French on the East Coast.

        Gotham, 11 Madison Park ...both are elegant spots with fine food, but Daniel is heaven. Just reserve far in advance.

        1. I will third Eleven Madison Park. IMO Gotham is not on the same level as EMP and Daniels. EMP's dishes are more "contemporary" than Daniels IMO, so as a chef I feel that you will appreciate the dishes in EMP more. I also find EMP to be less "stiffy" in ambiance, so it is better if you are celebrating with a group of friends for your birthday. In terms of food quality and service, both are as good as you can get in NYC.

          Hope you have a wonderful birthday dinner! Happy Birthday!

          1 Reply
          1. re: kobetobiko

            Other than 11 MP or maybe Bouley none of the above suggestions are really worth what you are asking....For Chef Type's I would suggest Cru, Craft, Per Se, Babbo, Le Bernadin, Joel Robuchon,WD-50, or Momofuku Ssam (for a group have the pork but special, this would be the cheap option)....Daniel way way past its prime and Gotham is good but not special...

          2. I have several friends who are chefs and they all talk about Veritas as the place to go in New York for great food and wine. I love Gotham, but don't think it rises to level of Daniel, Per Se or Jean George.