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Where to Have Work Holiday Dinner in CC?

Ten people, disparate interests and tastes. Menu must have steak and potatoes, but cannot be a steak house (Boss hates steak houses). We thought the Continental would be perfect but called and they don't take reservations for less than 15. Hostess (?) said we could wait in the bar for up to a half hour. It's hard to make conversation for the length of dinner. Places we've been previously: Fogo de Chao, Estia...on the table now are Roy's and Sotto Varalli...please help!

Cast of Characters:
Boss, foodie and has ultimate say.
Engineer, steak and potatoes guy, uncomfortable in a "fancy" place
Asst. Boss, doesn't like German or Indian
Accountant, will go anywhere
Office Manager, will go anywhere
Receptionist, probably won't show up
Me, avoid the chains, please
Lucky to Go One, will go anywhere
Lucky to Go Two, will go anywhere
Lucky to Go Three, will go anywhere

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  1. It's a chain, but how about Oceaniare?

    1 Reply
    1. re: hungry100

      oceanaire's probably too formal a place for what sounds like a small, casual office... for some reason, i feel like i should be waving a golden cigarette holder and wearing a fur coat every time i go in there. i like nice places, but it's a little to grand for me...

      1. Matyson would be perfect. It has steak frites. it is byo tho.

        1. Brasserie Perrier, Estia, Devon, Branzino? I reccomend against Roy's.

          2 Replies
            1. re: EastCoastWineMan

              I think it's really sub par overpriced chain food that is completley uninspired.

            1. You don't really have a large group with disparate tastes. You have one person doesn't like German or Indian - it's not real hard to avoid those cuisines.

              "Steak and potatoes guys" don't exclude all other food, generally speaking they will eat any food that is not frou-frou.

              Roys and Davios hae been mentioned. Downeys - is Happy Rooster closed? How about DiNArdis or Bookbinders - most seafood places serve steak. Lolita. Marathon.

              I am very much surprised that places are still taking reservations for 15 at this time of year.

              1. Coquette at 5th and Bainbridge?

                  1. re: kacm1003

                    Isn't tangerine closed from about a month ago?

                    1. re: FrankJBN

                      I don't think so, you may be thinking of Washington Square, another Starr place.

                  2. Love the definitions of the cast of characters!
                    Once again, it's all about the boss man. I think Davios would be a good, safe choice. I have had numerous business meals there, and while not super-gourmet, the food has always been good. Also Brassier Perrier might be another worth considering.
                    I assume with that large a group that BYOB would not be a good choice, so in your situation I would not get involved with that.

                    1. I'd recommend Le Bar Lyonnais. I've seen them set up tables for up to 12 people there. It's also not overly "fancy" or "stuffy" (for the Engineer), and you can order a la carte off Le Bec-Fin's menu (for the foodie Boss). In terms of meat and potatoes, the options include a pretty good 18oz porterhouse with french fries or the filet mignon from the main dining room (filet mignon with a baked potato duo). Incidentally, they still have a decent supply of white truffles left so you can order risotto or pasta and have them grate that fresh for you as a topping. I had it the other day, and it was absolutely delicious. The dry weather in Italy has intensifed the flavor and aroma of the white truffles this season.

                      1. Thanks for all the help...I'll tell you where we stand. Davio's has been rejected because the boss's wife has been there and said it's Not That Great. The Boss recently ate at Brasserie Perrier and wasn't impressed. Tangerine probably has that "no reservations for parties of less than 15 rule too"...Not Bookbinders, I can't forgive them for tearing down historic buildings for a parking lot...and the Engineer likes to order beer, I know he can bring it to a BYOB but that won't fly. And he really wants his steak and potatoes, he's not getting anything else.

                        4 Replies
                        1. re: Notso Picky Eater

                          What has the boss suggested? It's confusing how they would aprove of Roy's and reject Davio's and Brasserie.

                          1. re: Notso Picky Eater

                            All the Starr restaurant have a pain in the neck policy about reservations, so I would skip them all. I have to do lots of business meals with larger groups and that restaurant group is unyielding in their policies about how they want things done.
                            Someone suggested the Saloon. We did a few holiday meals there some years ago, and they were successful. We also have done them at Panorama, good food; again not over the top. Sometimes you get service with an attitude, but if you reserve a table in the bar area, it is really very nice.
                            Mr. Pickles has great taste, so I would also take his posting to heart; he knows his food!

                            1. re: mschow

                              I would definitely recommend Panorama over the Saloon. I have never been impressed with the food at the Saloon.

                            2. would eulogy be too casual? i'm convinced that's the place to please people from all wakes... casual, but dark enough that it doesn't feel TOO casual. good food, excellent beers, good service... they take reservations... a nice upstairs table would be great! fish n chips are delicious. there is a WEIRD crab / fried shoestring potato-like appetizer... i think it's super-tasty, maybe an odd thing to share with anyone you're not close with as it involves some digging and picking... but good nonetheless. has anyone else had that thing? i've never encountered such a strange appetizer.
                              anyway, a dark bar and pub food always struck me as festive in its own right... a cozy place to keep warm on a cold night?

                              italian might be a good compromise for your group... i think i am still a few steps away from discovering THE city's best italian, but i do have to give criniti in south philly the vote for best italian i've had thus far. casual, but damn good. totally unpretentious, unlike most of the italian places i've been to in center city.

                              i agree with another poster about panorama / in the bar area. it's a safe pick that will please most... i had no complaints.

                              the one poster's right in that it comes down to what the boss wants or what you convince him he wants (but no one should argue much if you're on the cusp of year-end reviews & raise time!!)... so if you do go with a more upscale place, order a beer to make your engineer colleague feel more comfortable. ugh. i know all too well about trying to please everyone.

                              1. or fork in old city? are they too frou frou?

                                1. Triumph Brewery.

                                  Who'd have thunk.

                                  Thanks for all of your imput!

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: Notso Picky Eater

                                    After all that you get to go to Triumph Brewery. Has anyone told the boss's wife yet!??

                                    1. re: Notso Picky Eater

                                      haven't had their food, but was way less than impressed with the beers... there must be a reason you never hear about it on chowhound... let us know!! :) happy holidays.