BYOB Birthday for Broke Best Buddy
I'm looking for a good place for around 10 people to do a BYOB birthday. The birthday boy is a beer fanatic, so I thought it would be a great surprise if everyone brought a big bottle of something good to try over dinner. Do you know of any restaurants that would be okay with this idea? I would prefer to stay in the East/West Village or the Lower East Side, where we live near Orchard and Broome. My friend's favorite foods are cheese, pickles, dumplings and Thai, although he's adventurous and loves any and all cuisine.
On the flip side, does anyone in their vast chowhoundly knowledge know of a places that both has a great beer selection AND has cheapish and delicious food? (Loreley and Good World are out- they've seen other recent brithdays).
Thanky thank thanky!
PS- The birthday is in two weeks, so I have time to make reservations if need be.
I second Kuma Inn if they can handle 10 people. Wonderful food. I'm sure its been written up here many times, but that chinese sausage thing, wow! You MUST reserve in advance though (even if it's just two of us, I always have to make a resy to get a table or the wait is forever). I was there semi-recently and it was still BYOB, with a small corkage fee. The food is very affordable, and you can probably cover the pickles, dumplings and Thai-ish request all in one go.
You might also consider staking out a table at d.b.a. (for the amazing beer selection) and seeing if they'll let you order in (I don't think they have food, but I feel like I read somewhere that you could order in... maybe I'm off my rocker).
Here are some restaurants on Zagat's list of BYO's: Bereket, Georgia's BBQ, La Taza de Oro, Meskerem, Phoenix Garden, Spice Fusion, and Wondee Siam.
Though I've never been to any of them, I'd categorize them as inexpensive. You can check their menus and prices on MenuPages. In terms of food quality and ambiance, hopefully, Hounds who have tried them will chime in and tell you which one(s) they think would be your best bet(s).
I'll try to answer your "flip side" question.
Good food and excellent beer selections can be had at Zum Shnieder (SP?) and waterfront Ale house. I end up at the Waterfront Ale house about once a month.
Most BYOB places are too small to go to with a group of 10 without a long wait.
Funny coincidence, my husband planned my BYOB birthday for this Sunday at The Orchard, which is right in your 'hood, Orchard and Stanton, the food is OUTRAGEOUS, and it's definitely BYOB, no corkage or anything, on Sundays, not sure about the rest of the week. We are getting family-style of 3 different flatbreads and 3 different salads (inc. filet mignon wraps and a crispy rock shrimp salad), choose any entree from the full menu, and all desserts on the menu are served family-style after dinner, all for just $50 pp. If you don't go there for the birthday, I highly recommend going another night just for dinner. The lamb entree in particular was fantastic, but everything I had was so good, bartenders make really great drinks, oh, and the desserts are ridiculous as well.