My mother asked me where I want to go for my birthday on a Saturday night in a few weeks. She suggested Melisse, to which I have been, so I am wondering what other places people might suggest. I think we are aiming for a price range of approximately $100 without drinks, so Urusawa is out of the question.
There are a few wrinkles, however.
My stepfather cannot eat a lot of foods. He has long avoided shellfish and pork, but he now cannot eat red meat, dairy, or anything spicy.
My mother does not want a tasting menu, though she said she would be okay if others at the table had one. (I believe that Melisse only does a tasting menu if everyone has one, which would also be impossible with my stepfather's dietary restrictions.) I generally like to avoid situations where a few people have a tasting menu and others do not, because it makes it difficult for the kitchen to time things and you wind up with the awkward situation of some people having food and others having nothing.
One of my brothers dislikes fish, though that is a minor consideration.
I do not want to go to any place that will be very noisy. I like to be able to have a conversation.
I'm thinking Providence may be a good bet, but most of the recommendations I have seen have been for the tasting menu. What is it like for an ala carte options? And are there enough non-fish items that PITA brother won't spend the entire evening complaining?
And other suggestions?