Although I haven't been to the Hackensack Maggianos, I was VERY surprised to find it to be a chain. The Boston one was excellent...VERY good food, lots of it, and they were very accommodating since there were only two of us. I can only hope the Hackensack location is even half as good.
"I was VERY surprised to find it to be a chain."
Really? Interesting. Maggiano's started in Chicago (AFAIK) (the one on Clark) and went nationwide quite a while ago. Food is decent but not the best or is it authentic Italian, of course - but does deliver OK Italian-American most of the time. Still, the last time I had a meal in the Indy location of the chain it was wholly forgettable (even borderline objectionable) and was definitely NOT cheap for what I got. Their tables are also too high, or the chairs too low.
We celebrated my husbands 70th birthday yesterday at the Riverside Manor at the border of Fair Lawn and Paterson ( GPS - 1 Morlot Ave, Fair Lawn)
It is a beautiful place, service was excellent, decent food, we had a nice large room to ourselves. ( Important if young children are part of your large group) The price was right too. I would recommend them.
It would be helpful to indicate the size of your group.
I'm not certain El Cid will satisfy your foodies. The others are sound choices.You might also look into Cafe Matisse , a lovely BYOB with a beautiful seasonal garden (depending on group size) in Rutherford or Chakra on Route 4 in Paramus. As to satisfying your wallet, none of these options are inexpensive, but Picnic or Matisse being BYOB may be less costly.
167 Park Avenue
Rutherford, New Jersey
144 Route 4
Paramus, New Jersey
Thanks for the suggestions. It's a party of about 20, not all are foodies and tend to eat HUGE amounts. They are of the quantity not quality mindset. I realize that none of these are inexpemsive, I just can't justify spending more than this league. The BYOB option may be the answer, thanks so much!!
I did read on El Cid, was there about 15 years ago. It sounds terrible!
Bergen County restaurants will not generally provide high quality, large portioned, low priced options. For larger eaters, you might try these BYOB Italian restaurants:
268 Huyler Street
South Hackensack, New Jersey
26 E Prospect Street
Waldwick, New Jersey
97 West Allendale Avenue
Allendale, New Jersey