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Dec 13, 2008 03:30 PM

Recommendations for daughter's 1st birthday party


Looking for recommendations for my daughter's 1st birthday party. We are trying to spend between $20-40/person and expect approximately 70 people (includes kids) and am interested in locations between San Francisco and Fremont. We are flexible on cuisine but I'm here because food is important. The only other requirement is that the place be family friendly.


Thanks in advance for your help!

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  1. not sure if you're planning a food party or a kids' party? if you're planning a kids' party, I highly recommend doing it at a kids' place like My Gym, Recess (in Potrero), Peekadoodle (Marina). if you're having a food party, you might consider doing a buffet-style lunch at a chinese restaurant. most restaurants that do this (almost all the Yeut Wahs in SF do them) set up a buffet table with noodles, fried chicken, veggies, salad, rice and charge by the number in your party. the guests can pretty much eat as much as they want and it's a very family friendly atmosphere. many chinese families celebrate a "red egg and ginger party" this way for infants at their one month mark.

    2 Replies
    1. re: sfwork

      Thanks! We are planning a food party that will have families. We are currently looking at Hokkaido in San Mateo as an option. Any other thoughts?

      1. re: phooi

        Whatever you do, be sure to include an extra little cake for your daughter to get her hands - and maybe face - into. That's part of the fun of turning one year old.

    2. Since you're looking at including kids/families, I'm assuming you're thinking of lunch rather than dinner? We had my son's 1 year bday party at Zen Peninsula in Millbrae almost 5 months ago. ZP has some weekend afternoon (2PM to 4PM) special banquet menus for a minimum of 5 tables. We chose the $198 per table (10 people) menu, which was:

      BBQ/cold cuts platter
      Seafood/bamboo pith soup
      Peking duck
      Chicken with salty fish fried rice
      Crab with ginger & scallion
      Calamari in shrimp paste
      Salt & pepper filet
      Crispy fried chicken
      Seafood pan fried noodle
      Taro with tapioca dessert soup (scroll about midway


      With tax and service charge, you're looking at about $250 per table ($25 pp). There was plenty of food (every table had leftovers), and the quality varied from decent to pretty good. Corkage is cheap to begin with, and when they asked us if we could finish and clear out by 3:30PM so they could prep for a big wedding banquet afterwards, they readily agreed to waive all corkage. Service is efficient (they do a lot of banquets).

      2 Replies
      1. re: Eugene Park

        What do people think about doing a 1st birthday lunch at Il Fornaio or Kincaids for about 50-60 people (including kids)? Too formal, too much? Remember this is more for adults than for kids...

        1. re: phooi

          I looked at Kincaid's for my mom's bday dinner earlier this year. IIRC, even the cheapest of their set menus will definitely blow past your $40/person pricepoint.

      2. I agree with above posters regarding Asian food. I held my daughter's 1st birthday (she's now 12) at an upscale Indian restaurant during Sunday lunch with open bar. There were about 60 people including kids. We had a section of the restaurant to ourselves & I got to select the buffet menu that day. It was delicious, elegant, kid friendly, & most importantly, stress free :)

        1. So, what did you choose and how was it?