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Where should 50 women eat in Manhattan?

c
cveenstra Jun 6, 2007 08:31 PM

I'm organizing a girlfriend getaway in late August for 50 single women from Canada!

I need a few recommendations for a great restaurant that has a Prix-fix menu that can accomodate larger parties on a Friday or Saturday night ($50 per person).

We'd like to eat in Manhattan (staying mid-town east).

Looking forward to our girls' weekend!

Any help is much appreciated ;-)

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  1. c
    cimui Jun 6, 2007 09:29 PM

    HunkMania Male Revue? ;)

    I wonder if Landmarc at the Time Warner Center would take all of you. Maybe you could pre-arrange to pay 4 or 5 ppl to a bill? Or just make eight reservations of 6 or more people, each? They don't have prix fixe, but prices--esp. for the wine--are pretty fair and the service very friendly.

    Most places in NYC won't have this kind of space. Of the ones I know that do, none has a prix fixe menu. And no place is going to be happy with seating 50 people unless you rent the restaurant for the evening.

    Have you considered breaking up into smaller groups and spreading yourselves around? All 50 people won't be able to talk to each other anyway. And if you're 50 single women who are *looking* -- well, even approaching two women at a time is intimidating for many men, let alone 50.

    7 Replies
    1. re: cimui
      financialdistrictresident Jun 7, 2007 03:53 AM

      Agree with cimui, 50 is tough and you might want to make your reservations in smaller numbers. I have had client dinners for 30+ (we split the group in half) in the small upstairs private room at Del Frisco's (it was cozy/tight for 16+) and at the Sea Grill at Rock Center (2 tables of 8+). Carmine's might be able to accomodate 50, but why come to NYC just to eat good (not great) Italian food? You can go to far better restaurants if you use cimui's approach.

      1. re: financialdistrictresident
        c
        cimui Jun 7, 2007 07:41 AM

        Darn, for a sec, I thought you were agreeing with me that HunkMania Male Revue is the greatest.

        cveenstra, I'm liking financialdistrictresident's Del Frisco's suggestion. I know the wine cellar holds 50, but since I've never personally paid for it, I don't now how much it'll set you back. Just be forewarned that your bellies will leave happy, but you probably won't want to do anything too active for the rest of the night.

        1. re: cimui
          financialdistrictresident Jun 7, 2007 09:59 AM

          I didn't know they had a wine cellar. Good to know. Thanks, cimui. Any fine dining near HMR?

          1. re: financialdistrictresident
            c
            cimui Jun 7, 2007 09:32 PM

            HMR *is* fine dining, my friend--for the eyes. And I'm sure they'll travel to her no matter which fine dining establishment OP decides upon that evening. It might be against fire code in the Del Frisco wine cellar, but if just one of the ladies would take one for the team and eat at the bar, the rest of you will fit just fine.

      2. re: cimui
        w
        whit565 Jun 7, 2007 05:08 PM

        No way will Otto work. No way. Fri or Sat is really a problem, although you might do better in late August when half the city is away. Of course, half the restaurants are closed, too. What about a huge Chinese or the BR Guests are a good idea. You can google them. Redeye Grill in midtown. Vento downtown (meat packing) lots of these places also have private dining rooms but they charge you for that real estate, too. Del Posto has a million private rooms...you are going to have to get on the phone and call. As for the prix fixe, that size party, they'd probably be happier with it.

        1. re: whit565
          c
          centrejack Jun 7, 2007 05:16 PM

          I had a bday dinner at Otto last year. We had the round table and there were 4 other large groups where they pushed together the other tables. If you plan far enough in advance you could probably reserve all of those tables. It is worth a try. FYI Del Posto will break the budget - as will several of the other options. Chinese is a good idea especially for one of the big places like JiFong.

          1. re: whit565
            financialdistrictresident Jun 7, 2007 06:05 PM

            Red Eye Grill has a private room upstairs. We had our holiday dinner there one year. Not sure if it can accomodate 50.

        2. kelea Jun 7, 2007 06:04 AM

          We had our company event at Gabriel's right by the Time Warner Center of 50 people, they did a prix fixe menu for us as and arranged an open bar for socializing before everyone sat down for their meal. I'm not sure their budget but sans the open bar, you might be able to fit it in yours.

          1. foodmonk Jun 7, 2007 06:57 AM

            Maybe divide people into three groups and give each one a 'unique' dining experience somewhere. Meet up at a club later where people can mingle and talk about what they ate and what they liked and did not like. You could choose three tourist-y 'destination' restaurants in the Times Square area, for example.

            1. m
              mclaurie Jun 7, 2007 07:21 AM

              If you all want to eat together, you're going to have to book a private room in a large restaurant or hotel or take over an entire restaurant for the evening. There's no restaurant that would be able to handle serving a group of 50 within the main part of the restaurant. Either way, it's going to be pricey. Does that $50 include drinks?

              I suggest you contact the catering dept. at BR Guest. They own a chain of reasonably well respected restaurants of all sorts and are good at catering.
              http://www.brguestrestaurants.com/events/index.php

              You also might want to investigate either chartering a yacht or going on one of the larger ones as a group.
              sail-nyc.com
              sheerwatersailing.com
              http://www.spiritcitycruises.com/ba/i...

              Where are you all staying?

              Whatever you're planning, I hope you're making arrangements through group sales departments of various suppliers. You'll save a lot, esp. for things like theater.

              3 Replies
              1. re: mclaurie
                kelea Jun 7, 2007 07:31 AM

                Mclaurie is right, BRGuest Restaurants will pretty accomodating. We've done group parties at Dos Caminos and they were able to put together a prix fixe menu and section off an area just for us.

                1. re: kelea
                  n
                  nancyl126 Jun 7, 2007 09:16 AM

                  I hosted a luncheon for 45 women at Molyvos last year. They were wonderful, gracious, reasonably priced (for NYC) and the food was delicious. If you are willing to go after 7:30 when the theater crowd clears out, you could probably have dinner there.

                2. re: mclaurie
                  financialdistrictresident Jun 7, 2007 10:01 AM

                  Love the cruise idea. Only one caveat - are there any cruises with really good food? I tried to plan a cruise holiday party last year and what stopped us from going the cruise route was the food choices.

                3. r
                  RGR Jun 7, 2007 09:12 AM

                  Trattoria Trecolori, on 47th St., b/t B'way & 8th Av., serves very good Italian food. They have a private room that can accommodate 50 people. It would be a buffet, and you can choose a menu that will fit your per person budget.

                  http://www.trattoriatrecolori.com

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: RGR
                    i
                    idia Jun 7, 2007 10:37 AM

                    I highly recommend Compass.

                    http://www.compassrestaurant.com/sect...

                  2. seal Jun 7, 2007 12:43 PM

                    There is a private room at EMP that may suit you all. I would look into it.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: seal
                      r
                      RGR Jun 7, 2007 04:08 PM

                      seal, $50pp at EMP?!

                    2. c
                      centrejack Jun 7, 2007 04:45 PM

                      The very back section at Otto might work. They normally don't do a single group bigger than 12 (I think) but you may be able to reserve the big round table as well as the other tables that they will line up next to each other there. It may be a long shot, but it is worth a try and you would get a Batali experience to boot.

                      1. f
                        fayth Jun 7, 2007 06:03 PM

                        Opentable reservation site has a section on banquet and large party bookings- lists restaurants, description, and contact information. This might be a good first step then ask for recommendations about specific restaurants.
                        see website:
                        http://www.opentable.com/info/banquet...

                        1. financialdistrictresident Jun 7, 2007 06:10 PM

                          Does it have to be dinner? What about an upscale lunch/brunch? It's so sad to come to NY and not dine at one of the better restaurants (you did say "great" and only $50 pp). Whit565 also makes a good point about August, it's a big vacation month in the city.

                          1. o
                            obakadave Jun 7, 2007 06:32 PM

                            Try Maloney & Porcelli - E. 50th St b/w Madison and Park - they took over the old "Prix-Fixe Wine Dinner" from their sister restaurant, Cite, when it closed this year and now do it only on weekends. Not sure about the space, but they have at least two floors and if you call far enough in advance, they might have the room - best part of this deal, the wine is unlimited so you really get the most bang for your buck (though I think it will be closer to 70/80 per person, not 50).

                            1. p
                              psp Jun 8, 2007 07:03 AM

                              Try the private room at Dennis Foy in Tribecca (amazing food). Also was at a birthday party for about the same number of people in the private dinning room at Eleven Madison Park. While not usually my favorite restaurant, they did a lovely job, although may be hard to keep costs down there.

                              1. Quine Jun 8, 2007 07:33 AM

                                I know this is different than other suggestions, but have you considered a Chinatown Banquet? Many places there are more than happy and experienced to handling your size number as a group. And I am sure you could set it up as a banquet, to get a Prix-fix type of deal. You could arrange it ahead of time to plan the menu, you have lots of lead time. And It would be really fun! The fun of shopping in Chinatown before or after woudl be an additional plus.

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: Quine
                                  k
                                  kobetobiko Jun 8, 2007 09:33 AM

                                  If they are from Canada then I won't suggest Chinese food as they are much better in Canada (or, at least in Toronto and Vancouver).

                                  1. re: kobetobiko
                                    Quine Jun 8, 2007 12:32 PM

                                    Maybe true, but it is a good and fun time. Canada may have good chinese food in some places, like we do here. Both are large countries and both offer great diversities that we can share, not compete about, no?

                                2. h
                                  Hungry Esquire Jun 8, 2007 09:36 AM

                                  What about something like Carmine's or Tony's Di Napoli?? Not the best Italian food in the city, but certainly good for large groups.

                                  Afterwards, you should all head over to my apartment =)

                                  1. g
                                    Glutton_ny Jun 8, 2007 12:37 PM

                                    The private room at Remy is a great spot for a party that size. If you work with the restaurant you may be able to get close to that price point.

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