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Jul 14, 2008 08:07 AM

Wedding food at Central Park Boathouse

Hello- I'm trying to get some definitive opinions on recent experiences with the food at Boathouse weddings. I've read mixes reviews online, and it's holding me back from booking my wedding there for next summer. I'm considering a sit down multi-course dinner.
Has anyone been in the past year or two to a large event there? I'm having frightening visions of cruise buffet-quality food.
Thank you!

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  1. Until fairly recently, the catered wedding food at the Boathouse was consistently awful. It's improved tremendously over the past 5 years. However, I think the reason for the mixed reviews is because the kitchen still tends to be inconsistent. I've been to 2-3 weddings there in the past 2 years. Food was completely different at all of them. I think it pays for you to be diligent with the menu and really press them hard on how important the food quality is to you. I'd recommend multiple tastings. Don't let them get too ambitious.

    1. I got married at the Boathouse last August and I thought the food was delicious. We had a sit down multi-course dinner. I may be baised, since it was my wedding, but my guests raved about the food and I remember looking around the room and noticing how many people had cleaned their plates. I can't speak to the passed hors d'oeuvres because I didn't have a chance to try any of them. Let me know if you would like some more info about my experience. I've also been to other events there with a buffet and I felt that the buffet food, while good, was much more average than the plated menu.

      3 Replies
      1. re: jessup

        Thank you so much for the feedback. I would be very interested in hearing more- I'm glad to hear that you're wedding went so well! Anything you'd like to share about the experience in general- the food, the space, transportation into the park, the staff- would be very much appreciated! I can be reached at Thank you!

        1. re: jessup

          I saw your post about having your wedding at the Boathouse and was wondering how far in advance you had to reserve the location. My s.o. and I know that we want to have our reception at the Boathouse and have an idea of when we would like to get married, but for a lot of reasons are not "officially engaged" and therefore haven't started any concrete planning, but because we have a specific date in mind we have actually been discussing reserving a space before even being officially engaged. I've been trying to get an idea of how far in advance the Boathouse needs to be reserved, but haven't been able to do so. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

          1. re: vbchica14

            spring, summer and fall weekends book up about a year ahead of time, but if you're willing to do a weeknight or winter, you have a little more leeway, I believe.

        2. I too have been to 2 recent affairs at the Boathouse. Both times the food was bland and dreadful. The chairs were little wooden bottom busters. Grossest of all was the sparrows sitting and eating the rolls that were but on the tables before the guests sat down. The weather was perfect for one affair so it all looked good, the other wedding wasn't so lucky. It poured and the plastic canopy leaked. There are better places for a wedding. Be kind to your guests.

          1. I attended a wedding there about six months ago. The food really was not very good. As expected, the passed items at the beginning of the affair were way better than any of the poor main dishes. Also, they had set up a table of cheeses and salamis and other items (actually a large spread), and that too simply wasn't very good. If food is a principal concern then the Boat House won't fit your bill. Yet, it is a nice spot. Nevertheless, without instigating competing opinions, I just wasn't very impressed with the locale all together. It seemed like nothing very special, a more intimate Tavern on the Green, but that's about it, I thought.

            4 Replies
            1. re: comiendosiempre

              I again went to the Boathouse, this time for a charity event (dinner and auction). Same poor experience, same birds eating the rolls, how could you even consider this place? Go when the weather isn't so great and smell the musty odor. Never ask the bride/groom how the party went, they paid a lot of money, it was their special day, of course they like it all. Guests are always kind, but not truthful about an affair, trust us unbiased observers here.

              1. re: meinNYC

                I originally started this post over a year ago, and ended up having my wedding at the Boathouse in the beginning of August. Because I know how stressful it is to select a venue, I wanted to report on my experience to give some people more information. I am happy to report that, in all honesty, the food was amazing and exceeded our expectations. My husband and I go to A LOT of weddings, and the food at ours was some of the best that we've had. Including all of the weddings we have gone to at Abigal Kirsch locations which, at one time, had seduced me with their shiny marketing photots of the food there.
                My opinion on the food is based on 1) the innovative menu and the willingness of the kitchen to change things as we requested 2) our experience both at our tasting and at the wedding itseld 3) the feedback of our guests and our vendors.
                To meinNYC, I do NOT believe that my opinion is based on the money I spent (which, by the way, is remarkably and relatively affordable compared to other places in Manhattan). If I did not feel that we had gotten good quality, I would be the first to caution other couples about spending their money here. I would also say that, at a charity event, corners are cut and it may not be the best representation of a kitchen.
                We had guests who tipped the waiters for exceptional service (of course totally superfluous and unnecessary, but it was nice to know they were so pleased), guests who asked the matrie'd for the recipes of things they had eaten, and guests who asked for seconds. All I can say is that all that worry was for naught.

                1. re: srk626

                  had my daughter's sweet sixteen there two years ago and we still talk about how much fun it was and the row boatings
                  life long memories

                  1. re: srk626

                    @ srk626-I am happy to read your review bc there are alot of negatives on this venue. we are possibly going to book our wedding for next may and really love the space, did you have a afternoon or night wedding? Did everything go smoothly?