Every year I plan my own birthday. I've gotten to the point where it's much easier to pick the places that I want to go to than to wait for my friends to come up with a unanimous decision. In fact, this works so well that I've become the planner for everyone's birthday too.
So every year, I get to go on several different dinners with different groups of friends. It's led me to some very good places in the past. And I am grateful for each and every one of them. There are just a couple of rules I follow in order to pick these places:
1. It has to be a place that I haven't been to before
2. All the places should be different in some way (cuisine, decor, atmosphere, etc) which helps prevent just having all French dinners (which is my favorite).
This year, I plan to go to the following places:
Dinner for 2 at Eleven Madison Park
Dinner for 2 at Corton
Dinner for 4 at Anthos
Dinner for 7 at Maialino
I'm having problems picking another place for a group dinner for 7. I'm thinking about maybe the Old Homestead or Scarpetta.
Does anyone have any suggestions? For any of the dinners? I would appreciate any kind of feedback. There is no price point. Though Masa and Per Se are out of the question. We live all over so anywhere in Manhattan but below Harlem is fine. We all eat anything and are quite adventurous.
And to help prevent suggestions to places I have been to: JG, Daniel, Bouley, Gramery Tavern, Union Sq Cafe, Peter Luger, Babbo, Gotham, Del Posto, Picholine, Felidia, Yasuda, Momo Ko, Marea, Scalini Fedeli, Convivio, Alto, Wolfgang's). And keeping Le Bernardin for something else this year.
Thanks in advance!