Reco for a DT San Jose cocktail reception venue near the convention center?
My company is planning to sponsor an early evening reception for about 50 people during a conference at the San Jose Convention Center in early July. We're looking for a casual, fun venue that has really good food because many of our guests work in the food industry. Walking distance from the convention center and downtown hotels is important. Are there any good brew pubs in San Jose? We miss Tied House but we aren't excited by Gordon Biersch.
2 Harrison Street, San Francisco, CA 94105
Mezcal is a casual fun venue with food that's about as good as you're going to get within walking distance of the San Jose convention center.
Agenda Restaurant seems promising now that Chef Gator is there, but I haven't tried it yet. Now that their web site has been updated with the new menus, it's very tempting.
25 W San Fernando, San Jose, CA 95113
Agenda Restaurant Bar & Lounge
399 S 1st St, San Jose, CA 95113
Check and see if the Agenda Lounge is close enough. They're a flex-space kind of place: their regular dinners downstairs are reasonably tasty and, I think, a cut above what you'd expect in that price range. Higher quality than Tied House. I sometimes go down when they have jazz in that room. They have two floors of clubs above and an outdoor space. The drinks in the bar area are fairly standard don't-order-anything-complicated. Don't know if they have different staff and/or kitchens for the lounge areas / party spaces that you would engage for the receptions, but it's worth a poke. I've seen reception buyouts of half the restaurant, which move to the lounge space later. I think they handle a fair amount of corp. stuff so would be a smooth experience - not that I've ever done that, but one gets the feeling.
There's a number of other club/restaurant places around, but I'm a little out of touch. You might consider something at Original Joes, just because the old-time ambiance would be a kick to your crowd.