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The best group dining and meal deals in New York

If you’re having dinner with friends, head to one of the best restaurants in NYC for group dining to feast on crowd-pleasing plates

Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz
Bodega Negra pig feast

It can be tough to please a crowd when planning dinner for a large party. Luckily, these New York restaurants offer feasts made specifically for group dining, so you can share some serious bounty. Blowout dinners like these involve digging into massive amounts of meat, including fried chicken and a giant suckling pig, a slew of sides and some of the city's best desserts. Go hog wild with our guide to dining with a group of any size.

Best group dining and meal deals in New York

606 R&D

Every Sunday, this inviting Prospect Heights eatery—complete with a spacious back garden—serves a hearty $25 prix-fixe menu, featuring an appetizer, main course, two sides and dessert. The selections change often: Recently, meals have included arancini to start, followed by chicken picatta and baked ziti with capers, artichokes and lemon, and a spinach salad rounding out the meal. Supper ends with a dish of roasted pears with zabaglione.

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Prospect Heights

Bodega Negra

With three days’ notice, this Mexican cavern will lay out the whole hog: a salt-and-sugar–rubbed suckling pig ($125 per person) that’s been slow-roasted and basted with white wine, then charred on high heat until its skin is shatteringly crisp. Jazz up your family-style swine with a range of salsas—verde, cascabel, habanero—before digging into sides like four-cheesequesadilla rustica, roasted-corn salad, and smoky-chipotle macaroni and cheese. 

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Chelsea

The Brooklyn Star

Gather your crew around the communal tables at Joaquin Baca’s restaurant on Sunday or Monday for a Southern-style feast. Reserve a spot at least a week in advance for 3 to 24 people, and you’ll get a family-style fried-chicken dinner ($20 per person) featuring buttermilk-brined thighs and breasts and three to five generous sides like skillet-baked cheddar grits and stewed collard greens. 

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Williamsburg

The Cleveland

Seasonal produce may be the star of the now Max Sussman–led Nolita charmer, but massive servings of meat are stealing the spotlight. This fall, you’ll find an entire rack of yogurt-marinated, hibachi-grilled lamb ($70 per person), along with roasted turnips buttered with leftover lamb fat and cranberry beans dotted with lamb belly in a shiitake-parsnip broth. But even before that spread arrives, you’ll be filling up on appetizers like apple-cider rye bread with orange-blossom butter and squash sprinkled with honey-candied peanuts.

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Nolita

Decoy

Ed Schoenfeld and Joe Ng’s basement bird haunt serves a complimentary assortment of house-pickled vegetables and fried fish-skin chips before its glistening Peking duck ($65 per person) arrives. Crisp from the rotisserie, the bird is sliced and, in Beijing tradition, paired with a trio of sauces (hoisin, cranberry, sesame), piping-hot shots of clear consommé, and fixins like cucumbers, scallions and fried leeks. Pile cuts of supple meat onto thin, spongy pancakes, and mix-and-match your “sides”—a parade of small plates (oxtail dumplings, octopus salad), vegetable fried rice and entrées such as sweet-and-sour shrimp—until the impressive buffet is cleared. 

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West Village

The John Dory Oyster Bar

Critics' pick

An ambitious departure from the seafood small plates at April Bloomfield and Ken Friedman’s Ace Hotel raw bar, a 3-pound red snapper ($75 per person) is flung into the deep fryer and presented whole at your table. The flaky tempura crust is flecked with fried basil, a canvas for sweet-and-sour and Thai-chili–licked fish sauces. The Far East feast also includes spicy papaya salad, green-curry–soaked eggplant, and rice cooked in coconut milk. Cool your taste buds with dessert: a scoop of bright lemongrass sherbet lanced with cashew wafers. 

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Midtown

The Meatball Shop

Groups can stuff themselves on the cheap at this popular minichain. For $22 a head, you’ll get a family-style spread that includes two meatball choices (spicy pork, chicken, beef or veggie), two sauces (spicy meat, classic tomato, Parmesan cream or mushroom gravy), three sides (such as mashed potatoes, rigatoni or white beans) and two ice cream sandwiches for dessert for the whole party to share. If your entourage is on the small side, the regular menu is still a bargain—nothing is more than $10 except drinks. Reserve at least two weeks in advance.

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Williamsburg

Momofuku Ssäm Bar

Critics' pick

The latest behemoth addition to the perpetually buzzy restaurant’s large-format menu is a 50-day dry-aged, salt-crusted rib eye and cap ($225) cooked a la plancha (on a hot griddle) for a deep sear. After coating the beef in browned butter and thyme, chef Matthew Rudofker serves 65 ounces of juicy meat alongside bowls of roasting juices, bulbs of blackened garlic, red-wine–and-onion marmalade and béarnaise. Complete your plate with a heaping Caesar salad studded with brown-butter–toasted croutons and crunchy, salted fries with a house-made smoked-bacon ketchup. 

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East Village

The Saint Austere

The dishes at this cozy Williamsburg wine bar are intended to be shared, and dining en masse means sampling the menu without breaking the bank—most items come in at under $15. Pull up a stool at one of the bar-height tables for plates like a Caesar-salad-inspired combo of sautéed broccoli rabe, anchovies, Parmigiano-Reggiano and boiled egg ($9), and a spicy-sausage–topped creamy polenta ($10). More substantial grub includes waggu steak tartar with shallots, capers and dijion vinaigrette, and steamed mussels with fennel, onion and white wine. However you divvy it up, you won’t need to spend more than $20 to $25 a person, and the filling fare ensures that no one leaves hungry.

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Lower East Side

Sauce

Frank Prisinzano’s (Supper, Lil’ Frankie’s) rustic trattoria showcases freshly made pastas and house-butchered meats in family-style dinners, offered for parties of four or more ($28.95 per person) served with a lemony, Parmigiano-Reggiano–topped arugula salad. Order the Neo-ragu which features cencioni (a dense oval pasta) with tomato gravy served with a platter of meatballs, sausages and braciola. • (saucerestaurant.com)

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Lower East Side

Comments

2 comments
Edmond V
Edmond V

I agree with Trevor, this pretty much sums up everything that I'm looking for. My wife's birthday is coming up pretty soon, so I'm planning on taking her out to a fancy restaurant. I want it to be something private yet decently priced. I just hope that she doesn't see my comment on here before then. http://www.sabatinos.com/party/seatedandserved.asp

Trevor S
Trevor S

This is a really great list. My wife and I are looking for a good restaurant down town where we can go with a big group of our friends. These places are about in our price range, and the pictures really look great. What would be really nice is to find somewhere close to the waterfront where there is fresh seafood. http://plymouthwaterfront.com