Saratoga group dinner
Hi Chowhounders from a Boston hound.
I am very excited about my first trip to Saratoga Springs next weekend. I have the dubious honor of organizing a group dinner for 15-20 people on Saturday night.
I have read a number of posts about the Saratoga area, and do hope to have time to explore some of the dining options provided, but for my group dinner:
Seating: must offer non-smoking section (one person is allergic).
Price: Most in this group are cost conscious, and aren't necessarily going to get a bottle of wine with dinner. I'm trying to keep under $15 for entrees.
Food style/atmosphere: For obvious reasons, this is not as important as other factors. We have a few squeamish about seafood/sushi.
Most of the group is staying at the Saratoga Springs Inn and Convention Center, and I'd prefer to be within a 15 minute walk. No one in the group is from the area, and I'd rather not have to get everyone in their cars, but a 10 minute drive is okay too.
I've tried Longfellow's and Olde Bryan Inn but neither takes reservations. Wheatfields already has a group scheduled, so that's out, too. Any thoughts on Gaffney's, Horseshoe Inn or Leon's or Publick House? Any other recs?
Longfellows does take reservations, please see their web page. You are correct that their sister restaurant Olde Bryan Inn does not. Longfellows would probably have space for a large group, but they are more pricey than $15 per person. A plus for Longfellows is a very nice atmosphere, however last time I went (Aug 2007), I thought the food and service were not as good as times past. You would definitely need a car to get there. Publick House ditto on needing a car, this is a casual pizza, pasta and sandwich place, totally not in same category as Longfellows. I am not sure if they take reservations. I have only ever had pizza there which is good. I would recommend looking at the restaurant right across the street from the Publick House which is The Ripe Tomato. They have a website to check out. The menu is pretty diverse and most everyone in a group would find something to their liking to order. I have not eaten at Gaffney's for years, have never been to Horseshoe Inn, went once to Leon's and it was ok, but I prefer Mexican Connection to Leon's. Mexican Connection also has a website and does take reservations. It is good, but a little high priced for Mexican. We usually go to Mexican connection 4 to 5 times a year and are long time customers. Do not worry about non smoking section for any place, it is not a factor in your selection. Thankfully all the restaurants are nonsmoking by law and it is fantastic! Hope this has been some help (I am a Saratoga Springs resident).