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Quiet, empty but nice enough LES/East Village/Chinatown Sat night 8pm with a group?

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Ok, this is sort of an impossible restaurant or bar to search for, and I greatly appreciate any suggestions you may have. After a Saturday night art opening in January, an unknown number of people (from 4-20) of various ages (mostly 40s) will be heading out for drinks and possibly dinner near Allen and Delancey. It may be too cold to walk very far, and it would be better to have a place in mind before starting out with a group. Is there a solid chinese restaurant that would be open and have booze? A strangely quiet pub with some food? Sorry for the the anti-chow request!

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  1. Congee Village on SE corner of Allen and Delancey is big, decent, and has a full bar (and even has private rooms downstairs, if you can talk them into letting you use them.) They have a small bar area, but it's really a restaurant - not worth going if you're not going to sit down and eat.

    You also might try An Choi, on Orchard just south of Broome. Good Vietnamese food, good drinks, big central table if they're not crowded.

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    Congee Village
    100 Allen St, New York, NY 10002

    An Choi
    85 Orchard St, New York, NY 10002

    3 Replies
    1. re: quandros

      Wonderful suggestions--thank you. I forgot to mention that the opening ends at 8pm, so it's the worst time to be looking for a table. We'll try to do a dry run in the next few weeks though.

      1. re: quandros

        Good point on Congee Village. They're likely to be mobbed on a Saturday night, though, unless things have changed lately in that regard. I have eaten at the bar, but the total number of seats at the bar might possibly be around 10, maybe 12 at the outside.

        1. re: quandros

          was going to suggest congee village as well!

        2. If you decide to go the pub route, I've had good experiences at The Sixth Ward. It's roomy, and I've never seen it too crowded (been there for brunch and at happy hour). The food is fine - standard pub fare.

          http://www.sixthwardnyc.com/index.php

          1. We were in the heated back garden area at dba (on 1st ave btwn 2-3rd) last Saturday from about 4-7 and it was suprisingly empty and quiet (given how packed and bustling the bar itself got). You can bring in outside food, and the combination of Xian Famous Foods, space in which to enjoy it, good beer, and space in which to have a chill conversation with friends was awesome.

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            Xi'an Famous Foods
            88 E Broadway, New York, NY 10002

            1. It looks like the Magician will work for an empty and nice bar. And if we need to grab a bite to eat beforehand, Vanessa's Dumpling House for a pancake sandwich. And if it's just a few people for dinner instead, Pho Grand looks good. Any other ideas for sit down meals around 9pm on the Lower East Side? Thanks again!

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              Vanessa's Dumpling House
              118 Eldridge St, New York, NY 10002