Last minute group dining in nyc?
April 2, 2014 11:29 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for an affordable restaurant that could accommodate a group of 10 on Saturday night for a birthday party. Ideally in a neighborhood in NYC with solid nearby nightlife.

I realize that this is late notice and that that's a lot to ask, but that would be ideal. Menu must have at least a few good vegetarian options. Ideal would be Thai or Indian or Italian, but I'm flexible.

Cheap drinks would be a big asset, too! We're in uptown manhattan but very much willing to travel.
posted by R a c h e l to Travel & Transportation around New York, NY (12 answers total)
This is going to sound wacky, but I really enjoyed Churrascaria Plataforma. They have an immense salad bar with all sorts of items on it, for the vegetarians, and it's MEAT-O-RAMA for the omnivores.

Meals come with rice, plantains, beans, etc. Plan to be there for a while to really get your grub on. Then, you're downtown, and the world is your oyster!

It's a fixed price, which is great for check dividing. They also have group packages.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 11:40 AM on April 2

Oof! The dinner is $62.50. I don't think it's outrageous for what you get, but it's not as cheap as a pizza joint.

What's affordable?
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 11:42 AM on April 2

Sorry, more information - most important thing is obviously accommodating a group of that size, but priorities, in order of importance, are affordability (most entree options under $15, I'd say), location (this is a 21st birthday party so certain participants will definitely want to go out after - although we're well seasoned bar drinkers so it doesn't need to be all the stereotypical stuff), deliciousness, ambiance, and convenience from the upper west side.

We're willing to dine late in order to try to fit our party in better, and we're willing to travel.
posted by R a c h e l at 11:48 AM on April 2

Also, I thought about just going to a bar instead of dinner, or looking somewhere for decent bar food, but some attendees would not be able to get in so it does need to be a restaurant
posted by R a c h e l at 11:51 AM on April 2

Indian is going to be your best bet- Royal Bangladesh has a massive tent out back, and allows BYOB. The food is decent, and cheap. I've been at 20+ person parties there.
posted by larthegreat at 11:51 AM on April 2

You could search the blog Serious Eats for similar questions posed by others as well as posts about group dining.

You also might want to consider Vapiano. It's a chain and not the hippest place, but it's huge and would be able to accommodate a large group and it has a good ambiance. What's more, everyone gets a card to keep track of their own orders and pays individually, so you wouldn't have to do the annoying split-the-check-ten-ways thing.
posted by ultraviolet catastrophe at 11:55 AM on April 2

Pisticci might have space available. They only take reservations for large groups and they are soooo delicious (and affordable!). If you go, I recommend the garlic bread, the creamy polenta, the artichoke, and all of the pastas.
posted by melissasaurus at 12:21 PM on April 2

Chevy's in Times Square may be more in line with what you were looking for. The place is MASSIVE! And pretty damn tasty for a chain restaurant. Good Veggie options too.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 12:32 PM on April 2

Check open table
posted by brujita at 2:05 PM on April 2 [1 favorite]

I don't mean to disagree, but:
ultraviolet catastrophe: "You also might want to consider Vapiano. It's a chain and not the hippest place, but it's huge and would be able to accommodate a large group and it has a good ambiance."
Vapiano should be a last resort. It's great for informal get-togethers (a friend throws 'hey-come-and-meet-other-people' things there all the time) but it's certainly not the kind of place for a 21st birthday. But if you can't find anywhere else, it sure can hold a lot of folks.
posted by markbao at 8:06 PM on April 2

I held my last birthday party at Lil' Frankies, on 1st and 1st. There's at least a non-zero chance they'll be able to accomodate you, as they can definitely handle large groups. (It's TIGHT in there, though.) The prices are what you are looking for, plenty of vegetarian options, and the location, well, you can't beat that.
posted by Conrad Cornelius o'Donald o'Dell at 9:01 PM on April 2

Was someplace able to accomodate you, I hope? Curious to know what you settled on.
posted by Conrad Cornelius o'Donald o'Dell at 9:32 PM on April 4

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