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Rehearsal Dinner in Long Island-help

lrealml May 24, 2009 01:36 AM

As the primary foodie in the family I am trying to help my in-laws find a restaurant on Long Island (preferably in Suffolk county) to host my brother in-law's rehearsal dinner. The dinner is on a Saturday, and there will be around 30 people. We would like to keep the cost below $50 a person, but could go a bit higher if needed. Since a lot of the family is picky, Italian or American food really are the only options. My in-law's would prefer Italian if possible. Also a number of people including the groom and my father in-law do not eat seafood. Does anyone have any good suggestions about where to hold the dinner?
We are far away in the SF bay area, so we do not know the restaurant scene out there, and so far my internet research so far has found nothing. Also what are some other website for reviews of Long Island restaurants? It appears that yelp has not caught on in NY as much as around here. Any help/advice would be greatly appreciated.


  1. phofiend May 24, 2009 06:35 AM

    If you are near Huntington, there are lots of options there.

    Mangiamo, a family style Italian place, has several private rooms. http://www.mangiamo-ny.com/

    Red, eclectic American. http://thebusinessneighborhood.com/sitecreator/red//

    34 New Street, a bit of everything. http://www.34newstreet.com/index.html

    Good luck!

    1 Reply
    1. re: phofiend
      lrealml May 24, 2009 01:19 PM

      Thanks! Red sounds good. I hope they are available and have a reasonable corkage fee.

    2. s
      synergy May 25, 2009 01:45 PM

      Testorosa, in Syosset is also Italian and might fit the bill. They have a separate room and do parties frequently. Their food is good and will probably satisify your palate & the guests different preferences.

      1. s
        Suse48 May 26, 2009 10:23 AM

        try the restaurant at danford's inn in port jefferson, kitchen a bistro or kitchen a trattoria in st. james (they do small private parties), mirabelle at the three village inn in stony brook. they're all in the same area in suffolk county.

        1. r
          robinsilver May 26, 2009 03:44 PM

          It might be a good idea to let everyone know where in Suffolk County you are going to be. It can cover a lot of territory. If you are closer to Huntington, you may also want to try Piccolo Bussola. They should be good for your size group and in your price range. We like the one in Mineola a lot. Their normal style of food is family style, so it should work out. Also, their wine list has some decent reasonably priced choices, so you might want to go with that. I am assuming if you are coming from CA you are not looking to bring $8 bottles of wine to have them uncork for you.

          1 Reply
          1. re: robinsilver
            missmar79 May 27, 2009 03:07 PM

            i second this- they also have a location in Syosset.

            We had my sister's shower there and they did a great job

          2. Fred19 May 27, 2009 04:32 AM


            If you are further east on LI, Casa Rustica in Smithtown is excellent.

            As far as corkage, this is not a usual practice, as almost all restaurants out here have a liquor license and want to sell you a $6/bottle of wine for $23.

            Good luck in choosing a nice place.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Fred19
              robinsilver May 27, 2009 02:05 PM

              Fred, we have found recently that if you ask a restaurant, "What's your corkage fee?", they will give you an answer. You would be surprised how willing they are to let you bring your own. It could be $25, but they do. If you are a wine collector, and go to a high end restaurant, you will not mind paying the $25 for great wine you have at home. It also is great if you are going with people who are not wine drinkers.
              I have heard Casa Rustica is great, but the only time that we eat in Smithtown is with friends who live there, and that is their regular place.

            2. l
              lrealml May 29, 2009 11:58 PM

              Thank you all for all the replies...
              The groom's family (my in-laws) lives in Lake Grove, and I believe the bride's family lives somewhere in the South Fork, so looking at a map, Huntington might be too far for them. I will look into some of the other suggestions.

              As far as corkage goes, the reason I asked is because from what I've seen so far, we can buy most wines out here for about half or less than the restaurants charge. We would probably buy a case of good mid price wine ($20-30 a bottle), but the corkage fee would have to make $$ sense, or we will just settle for something off their wine list.

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