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Garden seating in W. Village for engagement celebration dinner

m
mikka May 23, 2007 08:48 AM

Our good friends just got engaged and we want to take them out to a nice dinner on Friday, something reasonably priced ($20-low $30 entree range), with a good wine list and I want to add that they're not terribly adventerous so we're looking for something American, Italian, Spanish, French. We aren't very familiar with the W. Village but that's where they want to go. We would also really like somewhere with a garden so we can enjoy the nice weather also.

Hopefully this is not too much to ask, especially given that wonderful neighborhood, but I want to be as specific as possible. TIA!

  1. f
    FIFO22 May 23, 2007 08:57 AM

    Palma on Cornelia St has a garden - Mediterranean Italian

    1 Reply
    1. re: FIFO22
      NAtiveNewYorker May 23, 2007 09:02 AM

      Great food, but my limited experience there was with grumpy service.

    2. NAtiveNewYorker May 23, 2007 09:04 AM

      Malatesta Trattoria has the best Italian in the neighborhood, IMHO. They open their walls to make the dining experience truly outdoors (for the street tables) or quasi-outdoors for the tables near these opened walls.

      1. e
        elizabeththinks May 23, 2007 09:05 AM

        Not quite W Village, but Gascogne at 18th & 8th is lovely French with an amazing garden!

        1. bml May 23, 2007 09:08 AM

          My first suggestion is August, on Bleecker between Charles and 10th, but although they fit your cuisine type requirement (I think they bill themselves as pan-European), I'd still check the menu to see if you think it would work for your friends since it's not what everyone thinks of when they mention those cuisines. Crispo (Italian) and Gavroche (French) both on 14th street have nice gardens in the back and are pretty traditional in their menu offerings.

          3 Replies
          1. re: bml
            c
            cimui May 23, 2007 09:25 AM

            Interesting. Does August actually have an outdoors back garden or do they just open up the glass ceiling in the back room?

            1. re: cimui
              bml May 23, 2007 11:04 AM

              They just open up the ceiling, I believe.

            2. re: bml
              c
              CKOne May 23, 2007 09:37 AM

              The garden at Crispo is lovely. I took my relatively traditional in-laws there and they were thrilled with it.

            3. NAtiveNewYorker May 23, 2007 09:08 AM

              For Italian-American (i.e. less refined than the authentic Italian at Malatesta) and a large garden, try Vittorio on Bleeker. Nearby is AOC, also with a nice garden.

              Otherwise, nice gardens are tough to find in West Village restaurants.

              1. c
                cimui May 23, 2007 09:32 AM

                For the sake of rounding out your options:

                1. Tio Pepe (Spanish / bad Mexican) has a nice, covered garden in the back. The food is not, IMO, the greatest, but it's fair enough if you stick with the Spanish.

                2. If you go a wee bit further east, there's also B-Bar, with an outdoors back patio, reasonably priced, reasonably good "American" and a mundane, but solid wine list.

                1. k
                  Katherine H May 23, 2007 09:56 AM

                  I went to a nice birthday dinner in the back garden at Home on Cornelia Street about a year ago. Cute space, plus good comfort-style American food. I think the wine list is limited to reasonably local offerings.

                  1. Toot May 23, 2007 11:54 AM

                    Vittorio on Bleecker and Grove has a lovely garden. It is a neighborhood place, family owned, not hip or famous, but I have been there many times (not recently, though) and the food was always consistently good. The chef/owner's wife, a nice Italian lady, is the hostess.
                    They have a webpage: http://www.vittoriocri.com/

                    1. v
                      vegansusan May 23, 2007 01:54 PM

                      Do NOT got to Home....One of the worst dining experiences in NY.
                      Crispo is a great suggestion
                      41 Greenwich Avenue- Good 'ole comfort food and the nicest owners. The back patio is new and gorgeous!!!

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: vegansusan
                        c
                        cimui May 23, 2007 02:04 PM

                        I like Home, actually. The food isn't innovative or anything, but it's well-executed comfort food in a cozy, comfortable space. My only complaint is that the wines are kept too warm. Why do you think it's so terrible?

                        1. re: cimui
                          v
                          vegansusan May 23, 2007 02:15 PM

                          Just a really bad experience...i once worked in a restaurant that size and new the importance of satisfied customers that would return. The level of service was subpar and insted of trying to help with requests, they could NOT have cared less that I sat there and ate NOTHING while my boyfriend dined. And, hello, have you ever heard of ventilation

                          1. re: vegansusan
                            egit May 23, 2007 02:31 PM

                            While it's probably true that they should have been more accomodating, I'm not sure it's fair to pan a restaurant due to a dietary choice/restriction. The menu at Home is not extensive and much of their current menupages entry seems "prep heavy." Depending on many factors, the kitchen simply may not have been able to handle a special request like a vegan meal. It certainly seems like the menu is meat/cheese heavy, and they probably use a lot of butter and/or cream too.

                            ... assuming you're vegan, based on your name.

                      2. g
                        gramercyfoodie May 25, 2007 05:04 AM

                        I second the AOC Bleecker recommendation. Just took a friend there for an engagement celebration - the garden (in my opinion) is the best in New York, and the prices are reasonable. The food is typical French Bistro food.

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