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Feb 1, 2008 06:35 AM

Business dinner in Providence - large group:

Help - I'm putting together a dinner for what should be 22-25 people. It'll be a Monday evening, so either a place open Monday or willing to open for our group. They like either a private room, a separate area that feels separate, or one small enough that we can take over the whole place.

The group is at the "money is no object" level. In the past when this same group has come into town we've gone to The Gatehouse and Ruth's Chris, and I wouldn't care to repeat a venue.

So far I'm thinking New Rivers. Any thoughts? Getting mixed reviews on this board and that makes me nervous. I'd call Chez Pascal in a heartbeat, but about half of this group is from France and it seems silly to serve them French food.

I thought of Gracie's but held back for two reasons - I went w/a group of 50 two wks ago and while that was perfect I thought our smaller group would either be lost in that big room or they wouldn't be willing to open for so few. Also, while our recent dinner was wonderful, my boss was underwhelmed last spring and I'm not sure how he'd feel if I recommended it again.

Anyone have any ideas?

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  1. I suppose Dave and Busters is out of the question. I am sure for that many people you would be able to score some power cards and get a few free games of pool. All kidding aside I am a fan of Ten. I think they have a private area in the back and they are open on Monday's. Ten can be loud around the bar area, but I imigine a Monday won't be too bad at all and I do like the food.

    1. Pane e Vino has a private room in the back large enough to accomodate your group. The food is quite good, and the 100% Italian wine list is 50% off on Monday nights. I've dined there at least 50 times and only once had a less than stellar experience.

      1. I hate to recommend a chain, but Napa Valley Grille in the mall has very good food and a private room in the front.

        5 Replies
        1. re: Jenkins

          You know, I happen to love NVG and would be happy to send them there, but I know the mall location would raise a few eyebrows. (which is sad, IMO).

          I just sent a smaller group (15) to Ten and I don't think they were thrilled - I didn't get many comments.

          Invino, I'm going to take your word on this and throw Pane e Vino into the mix. I went once, several years ago, and it was for the 2/1 special and wasn't thrilled, so I never went back.

          I am now also thinking of Cafe Nuovo...?

          1. re: JaneRI

            I second Pane e Vino. If I had guests from France, I might like to eat good Italian (on Federal Hill, all the better) to show off (ha---only half tongue in cheek there).

            It's been much too long for me to reliably say, so if others here have more recent feedback----but Blue Grotto might be nice also. If you're willing to leave downcity, Pizzico could be taken over (the right half) pretty nicely by a group. CAV also---don't they have a separate room? Very nice environment, great food.

            1. re: Moonpie1

              I personally love CAV, but only go for brunch and had heard mixed things on these boards about dinner...and last time I had brunch (December) we had to move from 3 tables to find a clean one....he was very apologetic but there was really no excuse for that. Like linens hadn't been changed since dinner the night before?

            2. re: JaneRI

              Hi Jane, Not sure if you are wed to the Providence area, but one of my favorite restaurants in the state is actually in Bristol: Persimmon. I was first introduced to it when I was a guest at a rehearsal dinner last summer. The food is amazing (the bride and groom had put together a four-course dinner). Everybody was really impressed; the food at the wedding (it was held in Newport, so I won't name names!) was nowhere near as good. I've been going regularly ever since. In fact, I have reservations for this Saturday night! I'll report back.

              PS It's small so that number would probably work out fine there.

              1. re: frobb

                Yes, def wed to Providence-proper. They're coming and going at different times, some are heading to Logan straight from dinner on Monday, some are staying for a Tues mtg, etc.

          2. Camille's on Federal Hill caters to a lot of business clients. High-end Italian, great wine list. I believe they are open on Mondays.

            1. I know it's gotten mixed reviews here as of late, but we had a very successful dinner, similar to the one you are describing, at Mills Tavern about a year ago. The private room held about 25 -- I think we had 30 and it was a tad bit tight at one table, but fine. The guests enjoyed the food very much (though of course none of them was from France, so ....).

              1 Reply
              1. re: ann in ma

                Mills Tavern would be a good choice. Chez Pascal might open for you.Camille's would be nice.Pane e vino would also be a logical choice