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Apr 16, 2010 07:06 PM

Looking for best Jazz brunch

I would like to celebrate my birthday at a Jazz brunch that doesn't sacrifice the food for the music. My group of 10-15 people will include a vast range of ages from kids to grandparents, so the place needs to have very broad appeal. Some are from out of town and I'd really like them to feel they've seen something that is unique to New York. It doesn't have to be fancy or formal but it shouldn't be sleazy, either. The brunch can be either Saturday or Sunday, and can be anywhere in Manhattan. Please, hounds, help me out!

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  1. Sounds like fun but in my experience, live jazz in a restaurant usually means it's too loud to talk, as many Manhattan restaurants are quite small. Also, 10-15 is a pretty large group, a lot of restaurants will impose a prix fixe menu and/or hike up the price. What's the most you're willing to pay, per person, including coffee/juice/cocktails?

    1 Reply
    1. re: kathryn

      Good points. I think conversations would mostly be between sets but I may have to come up with a totally different plan. North Square is looking pretty good from what I've read and is in a good price range, around $20-35 per person. But maybe there are better places.

      North Square
      103 Waverly Place, New York, NY 10011

    2. If you're all jazz fans I suggest you go forr Sat or Sun brunch at Smoke- on Broadway at 105th St. Smoke is a full time jazz club- some of the biggest bames in the business play there- Cedar Walton, George Coleman, John Farnsowth,-rather than a restaurant that has some small group for Sat or Sun brunch that plays jazz. (like North Square- a restaurant with a nice brunch but not a place where the music is just background music not the major or even an important component-
      And the food is pretty good.

      North Square
      103 Waverly Place, New York, NY 10011

      1. We're going to the Bluenote in the village next Sunday for a jazz brunch Selected more for location and price but I'll report if you're interested. Last year we went to an evening show at Smoke and really enjoyed both food and music.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Berheenia

          I'd love to hear back on yiur experience. I rarely go to the Blue Note because I find their cover charge too high- although they certainly get some great acts.

          1. re: Ann900

            The music was fantastic- group was the Divas quintet. The drinks and service were okay. The food was so bad that my son asked that we didn't talk about it and he is in the restaurant business. It was just too ambitious for a venue like that. Things came out really late and were cold and awful, especially the eggs benedict and the omelet. The potato side dish was something I would expect to see as a c ration in the military. Too bad because it was such a nice time otherwise. I had serious indigestion for the rest of the day and it totally ruined my dinner at Keen's that night.

          1. re: foodismylife

            It may not be the best, but one that i know of and think is decent is Jules on St. Marks. The jazz starts around 12-1 and it's definitely not sleazy. Roomy inside too so you could probably easily get a table for 10 - 15.

            1. re: MinhLikesFood

              In my experience, though, Jules is very loud.