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Jun 30, 2010 02:00 PM

Best Restaurant for an office outing

Looking for a good restaurant in Manhattan (below 59th Street) for a group of 16.

Doesn't need to be fancy, or have a seperate room for the group, but must have great food and a fun atmosphere. Trying to avoid anything akin to Times Square's Bubba Gumps, Olive Garden, ESPN Zone, etc.

A fairly adventurous group when it comes to food, and we have some vegetarians and vegans who we need to be considerate of.

And on top of that, we like to drink, so a quality bar/wine selection is also an important factor.

Thanks in advance!

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  1. What about Le Cirque. The food is good and it's plenty big. May not be fun though.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Littleman

      Whoa. A company outing at Le Cirque? What kind of company would that be? Obviously a successful one. With older employees.

      jonnytb: What is your price range? Would you like it to be in a certain area? Perhaps close to your office? Are you a young start-up? A division of an investment bank? An art gallery? Actuaries? Each would invite its own recommendations.

      Le Cirque
      151 East 58th Street, New York, NY 10022

      1. re: chow_gal

        Um. Thanks for help. Le Cirque is a bit our of our league. I guess you could say we are in the music biz. The demographics are fairly broad though. Most are NYers, some are coming from LA. price range should definitely be south of $100 per person, including drinks. Location should be Manhattan, south of 59th street, but otherwise, no specific neighborhood.

        Le Cirque
        151 East 58th Street, New York, NY 10022

    2. Alto Maybe. There's a private room for 16.

      Alto @ 11 East 53rd Street, New York, NY 212 - 308 - 1099.

      5 Replies
      1. re: Littleman

        Alto does not fit the OP's requirements or preferences.

        1. re: gutsofsteel

          What does fit the OP's requirements. I suggested what I thought was within the OP's requirements. Since you disagree kindly state your suggestion so others can comment as well.

          1. re: Littleman

            I actually like The Smith for a large group. It's near Union Square/East Village (if you want to go out afterwards) food is good and accessible to a wide variety of tastes and eating preferences, they've got a very solid bar, and they handle groups well.


            1. re: eeee

              The Smith is loud, really, really loud. I wouldn't find it conducive for an office outing. You'd only be able to speak to the people seated immediately next to you.

              Having said all that I think the food is quite good for bar food. I really enjoy the tempura string beans.

              1. re: bookhound

                I believe the Smith has a private room downstairs, so that might help with the noise issues.

      2. Perhaps, Tabla? The menu includes traditional Indian and Indian-inspired Contemporary American cuisine. It would certainly satisfy the fairly adventurous and the vegetarians, but you would have to check with the restaurant to see if there are vegan-friendly dishes for those members of your group.

        The food's delicious, they've got a very good wine and drinks list, and service is excellent. Upstairs is nicer than downstairs (same menu); the vibe is lively, yet the noise level remains conversation-friendly; and they can easily accommodate a group of 16.

        Tabla photos here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/11863391...