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50th anniversary party in Stillwater, any suggestions?

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The parental units live in Stillwater and have long eschewed the idea of an anniversary celebration as the date approached. BUT they recently attended an anniversary party and had FUN so now they want one of their own. It's in 3 months. Any suggestions? I don't think you'd want them driving any farther than Lake Elmo.

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  1. Phil's Tara Hideaway is unique and I've always had good food and service there.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Skizzle

      LOVE Hideaway....consistently excellent food and service. Marx right on Main St. is also good. Not sure how easily either place could accommodate a large party, so that's something to consider. If it's a relatively modest sized group (15 or fewer), I wouldn't think either would have a problem. Above that MIGHT be difficult. Lake Elmo Inn (also very good food and service) has a much larger capacity.

    2. The only two places worth knowing are listed in the first two replies. Marx and Phil's Tara Hideaway are the only two restaurants worth writing home about. This is coming from someone who has literally eaten at every restaurant in downtown Stillwater and most off of HWY 36.

      5 Replies
      1. re: NugarifiK

        I've never heard of Marx. Is it new?

        Also, what do you think of The Kitchen?

        1. re: BigE

          Marx has been around for quite a while. It used to be half the size but still retains its intimate setting. I have not been to The Kitchen yet, but I like their menu and intend to give it a shot this weekend.

        2. re: NugarifiK

          I looked at the Phil's Hideaway website and I am worried that it is too rustic. On Yelp, everyone mentions how busy it is (and it seems deservedly so). I wonder if they would close for a party. The Lake Elmo Inn has an event center, that might work. Can you please tell me about Marx's, Ive never been there. New update: now Mom wants to have a dinner party Sat night and a huge cocktail shindig Sun. Anyone been to the Lowell Inn? Thank you for your help.

          1. re: runwestierun

            Phil's isn't as rustic as the site makes it look and it's really good. They don't take reservations but my guess is that if you wanted to hold an "event" there they would work with you.
            Marx is like a bistro + wine bar. From what I remember, it's not huge but has good/inventive dishes. Not sure if they could accommodate a large group.
            Smalley's carribean BBQ is owned by Tim McKee and is supposed to be good. It's on Main street- I wandered in to look around but haven't had a chance to eat there yet. The space looked big from my brief glance around. That could be a good option if that's the kind of food you may be interested in.

            1. re: meljohns

              i think that smalley's would definitely be too informal, if the op is worried that phil's would be. bbq and nice clothes don't mix so much. . . and it's just not all that great. all of the sauces seem to be based around worcestershire sauce. i'd love to like the place more, but i don't. when you look at the menu offerings it seems like it's barely a step above a tgi fridays. this is just my opinion and i haven't been back to smalley's since its 1st year of operation. however there are several bar areas and split levels at the restaurant and it seems like it would be easy to close off one of these areas and have a private party there.