MSP - Budget Friendly Birthday Dinner for 7
My birthday was on Saturday, and my family would like to take me out to dinner. There are 7 of us spread out over the metro (my parents are in the northern burbs, I'm in the NE burbs, sisters and significant others are in Eagan and South Minneapolis, respectively). I need ideas for a nice, relatively inexpensive dinner. Less than $20 a head would be ideal. Keep in mind, my dad isn't the most adventurous diner. We took him to Hell's Kitchen in November for his birthday.
I searched for birthday threads and budget dining threads, but couldn't seem to come up with anything.
Thanks in advance for any guidance.
Happy birthday! I also grapple with this issue when my fiancee's mom comes into town. We like to treat - the two of us, his mom, mine, and usually my grandma and my brother - so we try to walk the line between "interesting and fun" and "affordable and not ostentatios". I hope the foodies don't blame me for this, but she loves Famous Dave's and we get a big platter to share family-style. We've also had really good luck at The Independent (they have crab legs on Sundays and happy hour pricing until 9 on Wednesdays). There's always Joe's Garage, which can add up with alcohol but is great for a more adventurous burger. I haven't been to Pop! in NE Mpls for a while but it is a favorite, too. Good luck and let us know how it goes!
Happy Belated Birthday. Funny that soupkitten is the first reply to this thread as her old thread on where to take non-adventurous eaters is the first thing that popped into my head: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/4964...
How about Downtowner Woodfire Grill on West 7th in St. Paul?
maybe a place that serves food family style? ime these places can wind up being cheaper than each person ordering salad, mains, etc. is tea house too adventurous for your dad? there could be a couple of tamer menu selections, as well as a couple of more adventurous ones, and everyone could be happy. some of the old-school italian places might be a good bet, too.
Update: We went to Tea House last night, and everyone was delighted with the choice! Thanks a bunch for the suggestion. We ended up getting the juicy buns and scallion pancakes as appetizers, and we all got something different for entrees. Had we known how generous the portions were, we probably would have gotten one or two less entrees, but I'm OK with leftover Chinese.
Our entrees were: Szechuan kung pao chicken, sesame chicken, chicken lo mein, mongolian lamb, Peking shredded pork, Hunan beef, and one of the specials named something along the lines of 'sizzling beef and scallop platter'.
I enjoyed every dish. The thing that really impressed me was, given the breadth of the menu, every dish and its sauce had a distinct flavor. Even the two most mundane dishes (lo mein and sesame chicken) were outstanding. Both were probably the best version of that dish that I've ever had.
Thanks again for the recommendation.