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Savannah private dining for 40-50 people, wedding party in Historic district. Any ideas?

c
coatiben Mar 14, 2012 08:13 AM

We are looking at potential wedding locations in Savannah and Charleston. One idea is to have a quick, small wedding in one of the great parks in Savannah and have a reception at a nearby restaurant. I know there are tons of great restaurants in the Historic district, but I'm having a bit of a hard time figuring out which ones could handle a private party of 40-50 people. Ideally, the restaurant would be in walking distance of the park, but we haven't really gotten far along enough to decide which park we'd like (we are planning a reconnaissance trip next week). The bride and groom are quasi-foodies, and full blown booze hounds (we want excellent beer/wine/cocktail options). Several family/friends are vegetarian/vegan, so it would be good to find somewhere that is going to handle that well. We don't have any particular type of cuisine in mind, but we want something creative and good. We are also thinking about appetizers/tapas rather than a formal sit down meal. We'd like the decor to be interesting, and an outside roof deck or patio area would be a huge plus.
Any suggestions, tips, comments, etc.. would be very appreciated.
Thanks in advance

  1. m
    meljohns Mar 14, 2012 10:01 AM

    I got married in the Davenport House Museum garden. We had about 50 guests and the venue was perfect- beautiful and romantic, sheltered from the street. One reason we chose it was that it offered privacy unlike getting married in a park or square which, while gorgeous, is completely out in the open. The DH is very reasonable cost-wise and it's across the street from the Keyhoe House, a great B&B- my fiance and I stayed there so I was able to just walk across the street when the ceremony started. You can have a reception at the Davenport but we chose to have our guests be taken by trolly to Garibaldi's. Our reception was upstairs, which is a gorgeous, gorgeous room. I'd definitely recommend you check it out. They were extremely reasonable and accommodating- we had passed hors d'oeuvres and then a seated dinner. Because of how they do things, we picked a menu with 3 options and then guests got to decide what they wanted at the reception rather than weeks earlier as most places do. The food was delicious. They also have a bar that's in the back, which is beautiful in and of itself. There's no outdoor part to the restaurant but that room has giant windows that overlook the street- it's a terrific space.
    Our guests were at either the Doubetree or the Avia, both of which were a short walk from the reception so no one had to drive. Perfect.

    8 Replies
    1. re: meljohns
      Buddha49 Mar 14, 2012 11:48 AM

      I like meljohns reco re: the Davenport House, which is an absolutely beautiful house museum located downtown. I also like his reco re: upstairs at Garibaldi's. IMO, Garibaldi's has always been a very good Savannah restaurant serving very good food.

      As another option to consider, I recently attended a reception for Wynton Marsalis and the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra held in an upstairs banquet room at The Pink House. My wife's sister, who attended with us, was very impressed with the facility, and thinks this will probably be the location for her daughter's wedding reception next year. The reception featured tables piled high with Savannah/Low Country finger foods and waitroids circulating with trays of great apps. A couple of bars with liquor, beer, wines, and soft drinks. A table of excellent handmade chocolates. Should be able to handle 40-50 or more guests with ease. The Pink House and the Davenport are not quite as far apart as Davenport and Garibaldi's.

      1. re: Buddha49
        m
        meljohns Mar 14, 2012 11:56 AM

        And both are run by the same management, at least when we got married they were (we considered having the rehearsal dinner at the PH house but decided the food was too similar).

      2. re: meljohns
        c
        coatiben Mar 14, 2012 12:00 PM

        Thanks, Davenport House is on our list of places to check out. Garibaldi's wasn't on our radar, so thanks for the tip. It may be a bit too formal/conventional for our tastes. The trolley idea is a great one! We might have to do that.

        1. re: coatiben
          m
          meljohns Mar 14, 2012 12:21 PM

          It's super fun!
          I'd still recommend checking out that upstairs room at Garibaldi's it's very french country elegant, not as formal as the lower level- and not as formal as the website makes it look, haha. At the time we had our reception, their requirements were a $4000 minimum including booze and food- that was it- which is really reasonable for a reception of that quality (I think the Pink House is fairly similar pricing wise from what I remember). We ended up going over but it still wasn't a crazy amount, and like I said, we had about the same number of people as you're thinking.
          No matter where you end up Savannah is a lovely place to get married. Good luck!

          1. re: meljohns
            c
            coatiben Mar 14, 2012 04:28 PM

            I've checked out menu's at Garibaldi's and The Pink House and both serve meat/seafood dishes (almost) exclusively. I'd like to find a place that will also have creative vegetarian options. After a bit more Chowhound reading, I've spotted three other restaurants that can handle private events, and were recommended for their food. Does anyone have any thoughts on these options: Local 11 Ten, Noble Fare, and Sapphire Grill? Unfortunately we'll only have time next week to eat at one of these restaurants.

            1. re: coatiben
              Buddha49 Mar 14, 2012 05:07 PM

              All have their fans, coatiben. We especially like Noble Fare. Sapphire Grill is probably the closest of the three to Davenport House, with Local 11 Ten being farthest; it's located on Bull Street south of Forsyth Park.

              Cha Bella is a pretty good restaurant downtown that serves some vegetarian dishes. I've had a sauteed vegetables over linguini thing there that was one of the best dishes I've ever eaten. Might be worth a look.

              BTW, what kind of coati do you have? Mexican or one of the bigger South American ones?

              1. re: Buddha49
                c
                coatiben Mar 15, 2012 02:11 PM

                Thanks, I saw some recs for Cha Bella. From what I could tell on their website, they may not accept large parties/ private dining (but we can check). Cha Bella might be good for the night before the wedding when more immediate family (and more vegetarians) will be there.
                I'm a field biologist, and I've actually worked with both Central and South American coati species. I first worked in Argentina (picture 1), then in Panama (picture 2).

                 
                 
                1. re: coatiben
                  Buddha49 Mar 15, 2012 03:08 PM

                  Nice pics. Cool critters - For several years, my brother-in-law kept a large South American male named Bubba here in Savannah . They sure love their tails, LOL!

                  Hope you and your guests enjoy your stay here.

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