I'm planning a party for 50-60 in the Stamford/Westchester region. It's for my dad's 80th birthday. I'd like something special, somewhat elegant, but hopefully not stuffy. Atmosphere is important, but so is food -- we all love excellent food. It would be for a Saturday night dinner. My budget is roughly $100 per person, maybe a little more. It would be a cocktail hour with drinks and hors d'/pass-arounds, then a seated dinner.
Here are the places that I'm considering:
Blue Lemon, in Westport
Ocean 211, in Stamford
La Cremaillere, in Bedford
Valbella, in Riverside
Barcelona, in SoNo
Bistro 22, in Bedford
I've thought of, but eliminated, Blue Hill (too expensive), Dressing Room (ditto), Dragonfly Lounge (buffet only), La Bretagne (no Saturdays available), and Thomas Henklemann (needs either 35 for private room or 100 to take over).
I heard that Emily Shaw's has re-opened, but I think I also heard that it's now more of a pub-type of place.
Does anyone have any opinions about these options? Or are there any good ones, with private party rooms, that I've overlooked? I'd greatly appreciate the expert feedback from my fellow Chowhounds!