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Birthday Dinner THIS FRIDAY!

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sesasheep May 3, 2011 04:34 PM

Ok, I know this is so last minute, and might have difficulty getting a reservation, but our birthday plans for Friday night fell through and now we have to find somewhere else. Need a party of 2, around 7:00 PM. Any type of cuisine is good, but looking for something a bit more special, as this is a birthday dinner. We are both foodie types, and eat anything except raw fish(no sushi bars). We would like to keep it around $130-150 for 2 for dinner, tax and tip all included. we dont drink, and so will not be ordering wine or cocktails. if we really have to we can go up to $200 total, but it would have to be really perfect.

So fire away with your favorite birthday spots!

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  1. s
    sesasheep RE: sesasheep May 4, 2011 07:26 AM

    Another possibility is to have a quite casual dinner on the actual day(friday), and then go for a fancy lunch on saturday. I think this may be more in our budget, but not sure if we could get a reservation for anywhere nice on saturday.

    7 Replies
    1. re: sesasheep
      t
      trishottawa RE: sesasheep May 4, 2011 07:56 AM

      Nougatine has a lovely prix fixe lunch on saturday. We have been a few times and the food has always been memorable.

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      Nougatine
      1 Central Park West, New York, NY 10023

      1. re: sesasheep
        p
        peter j RE: sesasheep May 4, 2011 07:59 AM

        Also try Jean Georges, Tocqueville or Picholine for lunch on Saturday.

        For Friday dinner, you have quite a few options since you don't drink. Do you want a great neighborhood spot like Perilla or Telepan, or something edgier like Ma Peche, or something fairly traditional like DB Bistro Moderne, or perhaps small plates like the Modern Bar Room?

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        Perilla
        9 Jones Street, New York, NY 10014

        Jean Georges
        1 Central Park W, New York, NY 10023

        Tocqueville
        1 East 15th Street, New York, NY 10003

        DB Bistro Moderne
        55 West 44th Street, New York, NY 10036

        Telepan
        72 W. 69th Street, New York, NY 10023

        Picholine
        35 West 64th St., New York, NY 10023

        Ma Peche
        15 W 56th St, New York, NY 10019

        1. re: peter j
          s
          sesasheep RE: peter j May 4, 2011 08:06 AM

          We like something a little bit newer and more edgy. Small plates are a +, but not required. We have a tenative reservation at bar room for friday night but wondering what else migth be out there that we dont know about.

          Also, does anyone have any experience with Bouley for lunch? The $45 lunch menu looks like a great menu and wonderful value. there are currently no tables avalible, but hoping for a last minute cancellation.

          I am guessing there are no other tasting menus on saturday lunch that would fit out budget?

          Thanks for all of your help so far.

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          Bouley
          163 Duane St, New York, NY 10013

          1. re: sesasheep
            p
            peter j RE: sesasheep May 4, 2011 08:27 AM

            Bouley has a great lunch tasting menu and perfect for a celebration. You could also look into Lincoln for lunch on Saturday.

            For something newer and edgier for Friday dinner:

            - Hotel Griffou has a new chef, David Santos, who has elevated the food by several notches. The menu is modern Portuguese like Aldea (which is another good option).

            - Kin Shop for Thai inspired small plates; Empellon for Mexican small plates. Nuela for Latin food (the arroz con pato is great).

            - I've also heard good things about Vandaag (Scandinavian small plates), Graffit (Spanish small plates with a whiff of molecular gastronomy), and The Dutch (Andrew Carmellini's new restaurant in Soho) but have not tried them yet,

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            Aldea
            31 West 17th Street, New York, NY 10011

            Hotel Griffou
            21 W 9th St, New York, NY 10011

            Nuela
            43 W 24th St, New York, NY 10010

            Vandaag
            103 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

            Kin Shop
            469 6th Ave, New York, NY 10011

            Lincoln
            142 W 65th St, New York, NY 10023

            The Dutch
            131 Sullivan St, New York, NY 10012

            Empellon Taqueria
            230 W 4th St, New York, NY 10014

            Gastroarte
            141 W 69th St, New York, NY 10023

            1. re: peter j
              k
              kathryn RE: peter j May 4, 2011 01:26 PM

              I like Kin Shop and Vandaag but I don't either is special enough for a birthday dinner.

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              Vandaag
              103 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

              1. re: peter j
                sgordon RE: peter j May 5, 2011 07:42 AM

                Re peter j: I should point out that Vandaag is not a "small plates" place. Regular app / entree sizes (entrees even a bit generous, sometimes)

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                Vandaag
                103 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

                1. re: sgordon
                  p
                  peter j RE: sgordon May 5, 2011 07:50 AM

                  Got it. Sorry for the misinformation. As I mentioned, I haven't tried Vandaag yet!

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                  Vandaag
                  103 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

        2. u
          Upperwestsider RE: sesasheep May 4, 2011 08:41 AM

          Usually, SHO Shaun Hergatt has space on Friday nights; the FiDi tends to clear out after work on that day. Great food, service and eye popping decor. Since you don't drink, you will make your budget easily. Your other idea of a casual dinner and a fancier lunch on Sat is a very good one: The flexible hours make it alot easier to get in.

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          SHO Shaun Hergatt
          40 Broad St, New York, NY 10004

          1. thew RE: sesasheep May 4, 2011 08:45 AM

            2 great birthday dinners i've had in the price range:

            matsuri
            degustation

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            Degustation
            239 E 5th St, New York, NY 10003

            Matsuri
            369 West 16th Street, New York, NY 10011

            1 Reply
            1. re: thew
              s
              sesasheep RE: thew May 4, 2011 08:53 AM

              We tried to get a rez at degustation, but completely booked for friday night.

            2. sgordon RE: sesasheep May 4, 2011 10:18 AM

              $150 and $200 is a big difference in terms of what you can get

              $150 before tax/tip = about $58/pp for food. $200 = $77/pp, opens up the options siginificantly.

              Based on Opentable.com openings around 7:00 on Friday, my $150 choices would be:
              Telepan ($59 prix fixe for four courses)
              Hearth
              Prune (not on Opentable, but worth calling to check)
              Public
              Vandaag
              Apiary
              Devi
              Cookshop
              The Orchard
              Momofuku Ssam Bar (no rezzies, just go a little early and expect a wait)

              My $200 choices would be:
              Cafe Boulud
              WD-50 (nothing on Opentable, but hey have walk-in bar seating that should be fairly open at 7:00)
              Falai
              Wallse
              Colicchio & Sons
              Tocqueville
              Blue Hill

              For lunch, the options open up considerably, since lunch is generally cheaper. In addition to most of the above, you could do:
              Ai Fiori (3 savory courses - a real "Full Italian" meal - would still come in under budget for lunch)
              Picholine (put together your own "tasting" at $14/course, you could really go all out)
              A Voce

              ...and many others. Just note that some places don't do "lunch" on the weekends but "brunch" with significantly different menus.

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              WD-50
              50 Clinton Street, New York, NY 10002

              Cafe Boulud
              20 East 76th St., New York, NY 10021

              Momofuku Ssam Bar
              207 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

              Blue Hill
              75 Washington Place, New York, NY 10011

              Devi
              8 East 18th Street, New York, NY 10003

              Tocqueville
              1 East 15th Street, New York, NY 10003

              Wallse
              344 W. 11th St., New York, NY 10014

              The Orchard
              162 Orchard St., New York, NY 10002

              Hearth
              403 East 12th Street, New York, NY 10009

              Cookshop
              156 10th Avenue, New York, NY 10011

              A Voce
              41 Madison Ave, New York, NY 10010

              Telepan
              72 W. 69th Street, New York, NY 10023

              Picholine
              35 West 64th St., New York, NY 10023

              Falai
              68 Clinton St, New York, NY 10002

              Public
              210 Elizabeth Street, New York, NY 10012

              Prune
              54 E 1st St, New York, NY 10003

              Apiary
              60 3rd Avenue, New York, NY 10003

              A Voce
              10 Columbus Circle, New York, NY 10019

              Colicchio & Sons
              85 10th Ave, New York, NY 10011

              Vandaag
              103 2nd Ave, New York, NY 10003

              Ai Fiori
              400 5th Ave, New York, NY 10018

              2 Replies
              1. re: sgordon
                s
                sesasheep RE: sgordon May 4, 2011 12:52 PM

                First off, a big thank you to all who have helped!

                We are going to do something local, inexpensive for friday, and then on saturday, we managed to luck out because bouley had a cancellation and so we are going to do the lunch tasting there.

                Thanks again for all of your help.

                1. re: sesasheep
                  p
                  peter j RE: sesasheep May 4, 2011 12:57 PM

                  Glad you'll be celebrating at Bouley. Enjoy!

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