MSP - Dinner for a group this weekend!
A friend of mine was asking for advice on where to take her post grad school fiesta. I know it is last minute, so p1lease keep that in mind when providing suggestions! I know that you all will have much better ideas then I would have come up with.
Here is the criteria:
Dinner this Saturday (5/17)
12-15 people, want reservations (don't want to wait)
St. Paul highly preferred
Needs to have a diverse menu, picky eaters and foodies attending
Looking to spend no more than $15 a plate (preferably less.. )
I think this is all the info I have, but let me know if you know anywhere that wouldn't laugh if a reservation was called in for a group this weekend! Grad school delayed any pre-party planning.
Little Szechuan would be my first call. Caviat: I believe even the most picky/bland eater can find something good from the Americanized stuff on a Chinese food menu.
Otherwise, focusing on the late reservation challenge, the under-the-radar places with decent food/prices come to mind: Puerta Azul, Jay's Cafe and the like come to mind.
While it isn't the greatest food, I find that you can get large group reservations at the Downtowner Woodfire Grill on short notice.
Mai Village in St. Paul off University would be my suggestion. They have such a great space and it's never a problem getting a large group like that in there.
I always love Moscow on the Hill - they have a great little ante-room for larger groups & the menu is very reasonably priced and surprisingly diverse (do NOT skip dessert - White Russian Tiramisu, Napoleon Torte, etc. are fantastic). I don't know if they take formal reservations, but I'm pretty sure that if you called ahead they would be more than happy to accommodate your group. They also have a nice patio (weather permitting) and chances are pretty good that Valeri will serenade your group with his astounding accordion stylings! Behind the bar, Lisa (I mention her specifically because I think she's the only one who makes it) has created a delicious grapefruit cocktail for summer - mmmmmm!
Moscow On the Hill
371 Selby Ave, Saint Paul, MN 55102
Muffaletta has a nice private room that would accomadate that number perfectly. Might see if it's available. About half the menu would be over $15, but half is under, and the food is quite good.
Also Shish on Grand Ave. has a back room that would hold 15 easily. The food is really good, and everything is under $15.