Group fine dining in Nashville
There's a group of us, 20-25 or so, professionals and food smart, who dine together at our annual conferences. We try to put together interesting prix fixe menus at venues with private or semi-private spaces, realizing that we're too large a group to dine off of the regular menu, while at the same time avoiding banquet chicken/filet/salmon deaths-by-steamtable. We're been doing this for city after city, for going on 20+ years, and outside of New York, our tabs with alcohol and service usually run about $150/ head, although we've crested $300 on rare occasion.
We're in Nashville this year, can't buy out The Catbird Seat, and its been a little more difficult than usual. I'm working on putting together private dining meals at either Capitol Grille at the Hermitage Hotel, and Merchant's (off of the "upstairs" menu). City House can't accommodate us on the night in question.
Any recommendations as to which of these two restaurants will be better able to pull off fine dining for a small mob, which has the better private space, and is there anywhere else we should consider?
re: pete k
Agree with Pete on the alternate selections, good suggestions. For the two you mentioned, Capitol Grille HANDS DOWN in many, many ways -- the ability to handle a large group, the food itself, the ambiance, the service, and on and on.
Another option MIGHT be Cabana. I know they frequently do private parties in their back room, but I'm not sure what the minimum is -- might be larger than your group. They have a sister restaurant across the street, Sunset Grill, that's another possible option. These are good restaurants, but would consider them also-rans to the ones Pete mentioned.