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Sep 25, 2008 07:39 AM

Planning my birthday dinner/brunch

Hey 'hounders,

I have less than two months to plan for my 23rd birthday dinner and I'm sort of stuck about options. Last year I did a birthday brunch at Highline in the Meatpacking District, which was inexpensive, the food was good, and the atmosphere was quite trendy. I did have a wonderful birthday dinner with a friend a few days before it at Degustation.

This year, I still want something within the moderately-inexpensive side around $35 pp, the atmosphere is festive and/or upscale, and the food obviously has to be good.

I would love to go to Allen & Delancey. Perilla, Annisa, and Bar Blanc but knowing that a large percent of the ones I want to invite to a group dinner can't do so...

Any suggestions or thoughts can help.

Thanks in advance,

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  1. Well if you're looking to do a brunch, you would get a very festive atmosphere with good food at the open bar brunches at Nero or Calle Ocho. If I recall correctly that you and I are both friends with Ariel, he'd definitely enjoy that! As far as dinner, how many are in your party?

    3 Replies
    1. re: JungMann regards to the open bar brunches and Ariel. Ariel and I are distant friends now (things gotten a bit murky a while ago).

      I'm thinking of having six close friends for the dinner (if it's within the aforementioned budget range). If it's me and Ariel, I could go a bit out of bounds with that since he's willing to spend it if it's worth it.

      1. re: chocokitty

        Strange how we're only 1 degree away and yet never met (and I'm not even invited to your birthday. Hmph!). Fun places that come to mind include Alta, Kuma Inn, Kasadela, Peep, Malatesta's, Gyu-Kaku, Sea Thai Bistro, Jeeb, Cube 63. Maybe Kampuchea, depending on whom you're with. The new Lebanese place on Avenue B, Layaly, is pretty bumping, though I haven't been.

        1. re: JungMann

          Haha...well, if you're up for lunch during the weekdays, I don't mind meeting you. (I don't have issues meeting new people, ya know? Met relative strangers via my food blog.)

          I've been to Alta and I don't want to do it for my birthday. I haven't been to the others you've mentioned and I'll take a look at them.

          Thank you!

    2. Probably I should give some restrictions beyond the budget, in order to make this a bit easier.

      - Cuisine preferences would be Asian, French or Mediterranean
      - It can be anywhere in Manhattan but downtown is preferred

      Thanks again!

      1. Hi Tina,

        For Asian, will you be interested in yakitori like Tottos? It should be within your budget, but it's not upscale. It's certainly fun.

        If you do want upscale, you can try Matsugen at lunch time. If you stick with soba and another dish, you will be close to $35 or slightly more.

        You can even try Ippudo for ramen. The place is pretty sleek, but the menu is a bit simple.

        For French, do you like charcuterie like pate and terrine? If so, you can try Bar Boulud for brunch. They have a $29 prix fixe for 2 courses and $9 for addtional. I LOVE their pate and terrine!

        Edit: forgot to mention about the Dovetail's special $38 dinner on Sunday

        1 Reply
        1. re: kobetobiko

          Hi Kobetobiko,

          Thanks for the recs! I should thank you in regards to your suggestion last year for brunch at the Highline, too. :)

          I've been to Ippudo but I don't love it that much to go back. I do like Bar Boulud but haven't been there for brunch...methinks it's a possible venue.

          I would love to go to Dovetail. Bah, the lengthy list of where I want to'll never end.