Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Manhattan >
Apr 22, 2013 10:51 AM

Brunch for 40 people upper west side

Celebrating a new baby and would like a private room and something fairly relaxes, eggs, bagels, fruit, etc. thanks!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. 40 people is pretty tough on the UWS, especially in a private room and relaxed!

    I think your options are really limited.

    I think that Sarabeth's Kitchen on 59th St. might be able to do it, and they do a nice job with brunch, and have private dining for up to 90! The Amsterdam location claims to handle up to 70 in the "Garden Room," but I don't know where that would be.

    Otherwise, I think the BR Guest group offers the best choices:

    Atlantic Grill (Lincoln Center) is very good and can handle large groups in private rooms (up to 150).

    Ocean's web site says that they can accommodate up to 50 people in the "Photo Room."

    Isabella's mezzanine can just accommodate 40 people, sort of spread out, I believe.

    I hate to say it, but one place that is really suited to parties that size is Carmine's. They do a very professional job, but it's really not a foodie place or a brunch place.

    I'd love to know if anyone else has better thoughts on this.

    Maybe The Smith at Lincoln Center???

    10 Replies
    1. re: StevenCinNYC

      I'm a foodie and I LOVE Carmines!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      1. re: StevenCinNYC

        Judging by its website, Sarabeth's UWS location says it can "ideally" handle 30, although maybe an extra 10 is possible.

        I second Atlantic Grill - excellent and fairly priced for what you get. The Smith is also good and can seat 30-100, and Calle Ocho would be fun if you're looking for something different.

        1. re: JeffOverley

          Yes, I think that the 59th St. Sarabeth's should be better for a large party than the Amsterdam location. I've done the 59th w/ about 15, including kids, and they did fine. I just wanted to clarify because both are on the UWS.

          I agree about Atlantic Grill being the best of the rest, and Calle Ocho does a nice job, but when I wanted to do a private party there, they wanted a lot of money, plus people have to like garlic and/or hot peppers.

          1. re: StevenCinNYC

            Sarabeths might not be the place to go and chill for a few hours and not be bothered by the staff except to refill coffee cups. Check out something that does not have a booming brunch biz if you want to focus more on the baby than the baked goodies..

            1. re: dyrewolf

              What's your basis for saying this? Have you ever been rushed out of Sarabeth's? I never have. Is that why you recommended a bunch of Italian restaurants instead of brunch places?

              1. re: StevenCinNYC

                I have not been rushed when having brunch for an hour or so at a table for 2 or 4, but that is not what the OP was after.. she can call Sarabeths and see what they will charge and provide for X$ for X hours.

                Not sure why you have a chip on your shoulder if someone differs to your advice but you in your first post recommended one "brunch place" - Sarabeths, two seafood places - Ocean Grill/Atlantic Grill (probably good choices actually) and two italian places - Carmines (bad choice IMHO) and Isabella's (good brunch but loud and crowded and not really a place to "relax"

                and I recommended 3 Italians, a southwestern and a wine bar with a pretty normal menu... all based on decent food and the sense that the OP could find privacy in a relaxing atmosphere. Again, sorry I disagree with your thoughts, but I don't think Sarabeths is the right choice

                1. re: dyrewolf

                  Sorry. No offense intended. It's just that I think that Sarabeth's does a good job at brunch, and I've done with 15 people and felt it was relaxed, and they had young children, etc. so it seems on target, and I don't understand your basis for objecting to Sarabeth's, particularly in terms of being rushed. On the other hand, I wasn't in a private room, and maybe they charge by the hour for that? I don't know.

                  I tend not to think of the places you suggested for brunch, but I've never eaten at any of them for brunch except Arte Cafe so you probably have a better knowledge of what they can do. The truth is that though they aren't really places I like so I just admit that. Thanks.

                  1. re: StevenCinNYC

                    Sarabeths has a great brunch, certainly better food than other choices... but for lingering for hours passing around a baby... not my choice, I just sense it would be rushed or expensive. Brunch is their business, they need to turn tables so I guess they'd charge a lot for 2 or 3 hours..

                    I live near Arte (sorta), it is not my choice for pasta for dinner for sure (Bello Giardino is my moderate $$ Italian in the hood) but Arte does sling a decent plate of eggs and that have a lot of spaces in there, the OP could get the room off to the right and spend hours for what I guess would be moderate $$ (and it's just a guess)

                    I happen to agree on Ocean/Atlantic.. would give Ocean the slightly higher thumbs up since there are more "rooms" there.

                    Tolani actually has great food and a decent enough brunch, I put the food up there with anything else listed except Sarabeths. If you live in the hood I recommend you try it and maybe have it on your roster of nice places to stop by for a glass and a bite (or not) They have a downstairs room that is likely to be easy enough to get for sensible $$.

                    1. re: dyrewolf

                      Thanks. I'll keep Tolani in mind! I've never tried it.

                      Do you like Ocean better than Atlantic Grill overall? I tend to think of Atlantic Grill Lincoln Center as the best of the BR Guest's fish places, but I only went to Ocean once a long time ago so maybe it warrants a second look?

                      1. re: StevenCinNYC

                        Thanks all for all the fabulous recommendations. Signed with landmarc.

      2. These places have private rooms that theywill prob be happy to book for a weekend brunch. Food is good to better than good at al of them

        Tolani (79th /Amst) Excellent downstairs room

        Arte Cafe - lots of rooms

        Citrus - has a downstairs room and the upper tier in the main floor

        Sambuca - again, many differnt spaces they could give over

        Bello Giardino - beautiful rear garden (notcovered)

        1. Maybe Landmarc at the Time Warner Center?

          1 Reply
          1. re: kathryn

            I think that's an excellent idea. It's a really big place, they did an excellent brunch the last time I was there (which was a couple of years ago, but I doubt they've deteriorated because both their downtown and uptown locations had been very consistent whenever I went there), and the service was relaxed and helpful.