Birthday Dinner Rec's Please!
So, I'm looking for a fun, low-key spot for my birthday next Friday and could really use some great recommendations from my fellow Hounders!
-Takes reservations/ will have a private room for 6-8 people
-One of these people is 5 months old (yup, I know babies in restaurants...but he's super cute and super chill and very well behaved)
-Pricepoint: I really don't want to make people spend lots of cash. Meaning: $60 per person with a drink, splitting an app, an entree, and a dessert is too much. As much as I'd love to hit Bourbon steak like I did for my hubby's bday, I really don't want to ask other people to spend that much.
-Atmosphere: Apart from having a 5 month old along, I'm 7 months preggo and, well, hitting a clubby atmosphere gets me lots of really dirty looks. So, I'm not looking to go there.
-Locale: Most of the folks live in the Rosslyn/Courthouse/Clarendon area. I don't mind heading into DC, but I don't want to drive for an hour and half to get to Maryland, nor do I really want to head out to Springfield or Vienna...
I enjoy/crave recently: Pizza/Steak/Bistro fare/Italian. Sometimes I like Middle Eastern, but not everyday (yay, PG hormones...). Sushi and seafood are definite no's. I"m not too interested in most Asian at the moment. Also, absolutely no Indian (or similar) foods. Most of us lived in that area for several years and are kind of over curry for a little while.
The tough part of your request is the private room for 6-8, not sure if these places have that option for that small of a group, but you can check. That said, in the Arlington area I'd definitely recommend Liberty Tavern or Lyon Hall. I think the price points would be about right for each. Liberty Tavern esp. I think would be good for the pizza/bistro fare request. Lyon Hall has an upstairs that stays pretty quiet- might be good for the baby. Eventide might work too, slightly more upscale so would be a bit more.
The Liberty Tavern
3195 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, VA 22201
I know this probably isn't the most exciting food for you, but the Daily Grill south of Dupont has several private small rooms.
2001 International Dr, Mc Lean, VA 22102
Carmine's in Penn Quarter? The only thing is that to keep the price point down, everyone would have to be fine with sharing. The dishes are meant to be shared between at least 4 people. Apps and desserts are probably good for 6 people per order. They definitely can accomodate your other requests, however, and the food is good. It's on 7th - Chinatown or Penn Quarter metro station. And it's a new place that's getting a lot of buzz, which is always fun, but it's still decidely casual. The place is *huge* so it does not have any of the annoying attributes of the latest hot spot and all that.
Especially this time of year it is really hard to get a private room for any small amount of money. If I were you I might call Tallula in Arlington and see if you could get the table in the front that is sectioned off by the wine rack.
What about American Flatbread? I think they have a table that is a little off the main dining room? It is casual, but great food.
What about Wildfire in Tyson's Galleria, they have good steak and big booths that are semi-private. And the portions are very very shareable and generous and not too expensive?
If you are willing to come in to DC either Dino, Bistro D'Oc or Firefly seem like they might be good options. All have private rooms and a diverse menu to fit different people's tastes. It should keep within your price point as well.
518 10th St NW, Washington, DC 20004
The 5 month old shouldn't be much of a problem if feeding the kid is done before the adult dinner. Learned that one on this board (Thanks Polly G).
And you're in luck if looking for Asian b/c generally Asian places are more allowing for kids anyway.
With all that said, my first thoughts are Nam Viet in Clarendon - securing one of the larger round tables in the back. Or, go to Hee Been down just off of 395 for Korean - they have the private Tatami rooms that are perfect for your sized group. And if you were looking for Sichuan, I've taken a 4yr and a 2yr old to Hong Kong Palace with a small group and been just fine.
Hong Kong Palace
6387 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA 22044
Nam Viet Restaurant
3419 Connecticut Avenue, N.W., washington, dc, DC 20008
Landini Brothers in Old Town has a couple of private rooms upstairs. Don't know about surcharges for using the room. Just be sure to stick to the caesar salad, the seafood and pastas. I haven't found they have a good hand with red meat.