Just a follow-up...
First off, thanks to everyone who responding to my initial plea. The organizer of the party ended up booking at Negril Village.
Now, I know what I said about the original Negril (23rd st), and the reservation issues we had there last time - but I have to admit it, Negril Village (W 3rd st) was great. Service was good, and the food was delicious - I had the Curry Goat Stew which was wonderful.
Anyway, hopefully we'll get a chance to check out some of the other places with a smaller crowd.