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Oct 11, 2013 09:30 AM

Any foodies want to share a table at Alinea in Decemeber?

Alinea has been a restaurant I've been wanting to try out for a while. I would dine by myself, but the problem is I contacted Alinea and they only offer tickets in 2's, which is basically paying for a table and I'd rather not pay double for a meal.

They haven't released their December reservations yet, but I was looking in getting reservations from anywhere from December 17th-23rd. So if anyone is available for those dates and is interested please let me know :)

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  1. I appreciate the eating by yourself thing (i've done it many, many times) but given the length of the service and the theatricality of the presentations it is really an experience that needs to be shared/discussed/debated as each course is presented/consumed.

    As an example, my wife is very fidgety and can't stand meals like Alinea's but she's a good sport and goes with the flow (and in truth she ends up liking it when she's experiencing it but disses it afterwards). It's fun going through each course with her because she cops an "Emperor's New Clothes" attitude as each dish arrives but ultimately gets it when she tastes the dish.

    1. I enjoyed Alinea solo, with a decided "non-foodie", and with a pair of people who enjoy food and fine dining - all three were very memorable experiences and I strongly disagree with ferret that Alinea isn't as great alone (I've also done extended tastings at Per Se and The French Laundry, Manresa, Saison, etc etc etc solo.) That said, since going solo isn't an option I do hope you find someone as it is a truly wonderful experience - if I were in town then I'd gladly go with you.

      14 Replies
      1. re: uhockey

        Hi uhockey, I looked at your website on the restaurants you went to in New York and I'm curious as to which restaurant you would prefer: Eleven Madison Park or Per Se. I'm heading to New York after christmas and I'm planning to dine at either one of those places. This time I can probably dine alone if I can get a reservation. I haven't been to a 3 michelin star restaurant before, but those 2 restaurants are the ones I also really want to try next to Alinea. What would your suggestion be?
        I'm not picky with food, but I'm more into the experience.

        1. re: Sweep

          Obviously not UH, but I've dined at both places twice and would say Per Se for the food but EMP for a more kinetic experience. From your last sentence I think you'd enjoy EMP.

          1. re: willyum

            Did you try the full tasting menu or pre fix menu? I don't want to be spending too much money since I have other restaurants I want to cover, but I was thinking if I do the pre fix then maybe I could also the pre fix at le bernadin also. But only if the pre fixe menus are worth the experience of dining there.

            1. re: Sweep

              Both EMP and Per Se are tasting menu only. EMP eliminated the prix fixe in Sept 2012 and now serves a New York-themed tasting menu (they did a significant revamp over a year ago).

              1. re: kathryn

                that's not true Per Se has a Salon

                1. re: Chadsie

                  True, both EMP and Per Se offer a la carte at their respective bars/salons, but neither offers a prix fixe. The question was whether to do the prix fixe or the tasting -- which is a non-question since there is no prix fixe menu for EMP or Per Se.

              2. re: Sweep

                Don't short yourself at ANY of the Michelin 3*s in New York - do the tasting.


            2. re: Sweep

              I've never had a perfect meal at EMP - and I've dined with VIPs three times. I've had a flawless experience at Per Se at both visits. That being said, EMP is definitely more 'fun' while Per Se is more technically sound. Take into account that both my visits to Per Se were extended tastings that cost $550 all-in while EMP will run you ~$400 after tax and tip.


              1. re: Sweep

                I vote for Per Se for experience. I thought EMP does seafood better than Per Se. Per Se does better with meats, sauces and definitely service. Can I go to Per Se with you if ever you get a reservation:D? Also, you can try both places if you like. EMP has the bar open during lunch where you can order a la carte and Per Se has the salon. The experience obviously isn't the same as the full service dinner but it could be a nice intro to the restaurant that you may want to try later on.

                1. re: sunbrace

                  Hey sunbrace, most definitely if I can get a reservation. The only dates I can do is Dec. 26 - Dec.29th if that works for you too. I'm not sure when the next time I would be back in New York, so I would want the full experience and probably do the full tasting menu w/o the wine pairings (I don't drink enough wine or know enough to fully appreciate it) Do you know if the lunch and dinner tasting menu is the same?

                  1. re: Sweep

                    Since I'm from Chicago, I can most likely make it if it's on a Saturday(anytime) or Sunday(lunch). I believe they recently changed their menu so that you can do a shorter lunch menu if you wish but the standard 9 course menu is available for both lunch and dinner.

                    1. re: sunbrace

                      Shorter menu has always been available for lunch at Per Se and both EMP and Per Se now offer identical menus at lunch and dinner otherwise.

                      Skip the bar/salon - cost/value ratio is totally broken.


                      1. re: sunbrace

                        Sure, I'll try to get a reservation for the 28th or 29th then. My email is

                        Could you email me? Then I can confirm with you on email if I have a table for us or not later.

                2. re: uhockey

                  It's not an issue of not being as great, but it's a long meal and as much theater as dining and I find the interaction over each course (and a post-mortem on the drive home and in the hours following) enhances the experience. Certainly for me, at least.

                3. My wife and I would be happy to join you....if you're buying :)

                  I hope you find someone(s)

                  1. I'll go!!! There are few 2 person options during that time period, unless you've received more replies. How about the 15th?

                    7 Replies
                    1. re: Uvasteph1721

                      I can't do the 15th.... Are you okay with something on the 18th - 22nd? Those are the only available dates I see on the Alinea website right now. Each ticket is going to range from $210-265.

                      If you're available on any of those dates I could reserve 2 tickets and you could pay me back for the other ticket when we meet there if that works?

                      1. re: Sweep

                        I leave for the holidays on the 18th and don't get back until January 3rd. If you can wait I can do dinner sometime in January.

                        I'm in the same boat you are, sadly none of my friends either want to go or can afford to eat here.

                        1. re: Uvasteph1721

                          If I no one can join me for december I'm down for January.

                          Is there an email I can reach you by or im you on skype? chowhound doesn't have private message :(

                          1. re: Sweep

                            I would love to go but I think I will go to the USA another time

                          2. re: Uvasteph1721

                            Hi Uvasteph1721 would you still be interested in going to Alinea in January?

                            I dont think December is going to be happening since no other single diner has gotten back to me.

                            1. re: Sweep

                              Sure, what is your email? I'm sure we can work something out.

                              1. re: Uvasteph1721

                                my email is


                      2. Hi, folks,

                        We're always delighted when groups of hounds get together to dine, but we do ask that the general RSVPing and picking of dates happen by email. Can we ask that the original poster include an email address (you can set one up using gmail or yahoo if you'd rather not share your regular email here out of a legitimate fear of spam) and direct RSVPs there?

                        Thanks and have a great meal!