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Jan 31, 2008 11:19 AM

Business Dinner in South Beach

Hi everyone,

I'm coordinating a conference that my company will be holding in Miami this July. I'm looking to hold a dinner for all the conference attendees (roughly 60) with a budget of about $100-$150 per person. Ideally this would include a half hour or hour for cocktails before dinner.

So I guess my question is, what's the best place, given these parameters, to bring a group of international travelers? I'd like it to really give these guys the flavor of Miami (whatever that might be, I've never been there!), but if it's also just an excellent restaurant, and not necessarily, Cuban let's say, then that is fine too. Considering these are all foreigners traveling long distances, a little wow factor would be in order, but if the food is really great, it could make up for not incredibly chic decor.

So, what do you say guys, any suggestions?

Thanks so much in advance for any advice.

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  1. Prime 112 or possibly Casa Tua (though I am not a big fan of the food there).

    These are the best for impressing a client.

    4 Replies
    1. re: tpigeon

      TP, I don't think either can handle 60 people. I have to run but will post back later with some ideas. (Stone Crabs will be out of sseason so no Joe's. China Grill comes to mind off the top of my head based on the size of the group)

      1. re: tpigeon

        Are either of those places (1) capable of handling a group of 60; (2) capable of delivering a meal including a cocktail hour for $100-150 a head?

        Prime 112's website says it has a private room but capacity is only 22 plus another 15 in an adjoining room. Casa Tua's says nothing about private dining. I doubt you can buy out eather place for the prices OP is looking for.

        Talula's outdoor space could probably handle a group of that size and they've got some of the best food on South Beach, with some local influence in preparations and ingredients.

        China Grill does private parties and can probably give you a larger space. Good food though not uniquely Miami (indeed has locations elsewhere).

        Nemo could probably handle. Haven't eaten there in a long time. It was good ages ago and the place has a nice South Beach feel to it.

        I have not been to the new Ola location but the old spot on Biscayne had a great-looking private room. Probably the most "Miami-ish" food, i.e. "nuevo latino."

        1. re: Frodnesor

          Missed the part about 60 people entirely.

          In that case...Tuscan may which I would do over china grille but CG is a good second option - another shot in the dark might be the standard as it is all outdoors so on a good night it could be a very cool option. Also Ago might be able to handle it too.

          No way ola can do 60.

          1. re: Frodnesor

            Nemo and Talula are both good choices if they can accomodate too. Nemo should be able to.

        2. I think the only one in the group that could handle it is China Grill. Barton G could probably do it as well, but that's definitely all for show and not really for substance (the food IS very fun, but I haven't been back in some time, because IMO they forgot to taste along the way). I'm curious about the complaints about Casa Tua. It definitely doesn't work for 60 people though

          5 Replies
          1. re: Icantread

            Talula would be my recommendation. Mark's South Beach has a private space and so does Escopazzo.

            Would the rooftop of Wish work?

            1. re: jessierandall

              I meant to note Wish and got distracted. I don't think Escopazzo's back can fit 60 but that space may be larger than I give it credit for. You can definitely fit a few people back there and have your own bartender for it.

              1. re: Icantread

                Do you mean The Tiffany Bar? I don't think they could handle that many for dinner unless they utilized the pool area.

                1. re: BlueHerons

                  Shhh ... it's not called the "Tiffany Bar" - that would violate the intellectual property rights of Tiffany Jewelers. It's apparently the "Spire Bar" (just as the hotel is "The Hotel", not the Tiffany Hotel - even though it was called that for years before getting revamped without anyone complaining).

                  That rooftop space looks pretty sizable:

                  1. re: Frodnesor

                    LOL! Yes, that is it, The Spire Bar.

                    Used to love to go to the rooftop pool for mojitos before the Spire Bar opened.

          2. Maison D'Azur may be able to accomodate. I would also inquire into Il Gabbiano, which is downtown, after my dinner there tonight. You may also want to explore Phillippe as an option.

            1. I know that Emerils, Tuscan Steak, and Blue Door all can accommodate 60 people as they were all choices for a company dinner I had at an old company a few years back. We did Emeril's and the food was so-so in my opinion. Others really enjoyed it. We also did Blue Door and I thought they appetizer was great but the steak I got was blah, mostly because it was overcooked, but I guess that is to be expected when steaks are cooked for a large group. I imagine Smith & Wollensky could accommodate as well.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Blind Mind

                S&W is an average steakhouse but a great location.

                1. re: Blind Mind

                  Smith and Wollensky is a great choice as is Tuscan Steak. I'm not a huge fan of Tuscan Steak as others are, but the quality is definitely better than Smith and Wollensky. It will do for a very nice dining experience. Echoing Frod, S&W has a great location for a function, and I think people zone out (aren't AS picky) when a juicy steak's in front of them. Beware not to take any "complementary" drinks however. I know someone that went and was charged an outrageous sum for mimosas they thought were part of the pre-set menu. Multiply by 60 and your head might explode

                2. I was just in Miami and these are a few of the restaurants that I ate dinner and would take you group size.
                  Texas de Brazil is amazing and would impress people.
                  Escopazzo is amazing as well
                  Quattro on Lincoln is also very very good.
                  I do not think that you will be sorry for going to any of these restaurants. Have a great time.