Best Restaurants for Private Dining in NYC

From group brunches to business dinners
August 16, 2017
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by Zagat Staff

From holiday parties to birthdays to boozy office gatherings, there are an overwhelming number of occasions for which you'll have to plan some kind of group dining excursion. Allow us to guide you through some of NYC's best private dining rooms, perfect for your next party...and all kinds of fussy diners.

Del Posto
Italian · Chelsea · $$$$
Food 4.7 · Decor 4.7 · Service 4.7

“Hard to top” , this “magnifico” Chelsea Italian showcases the Batali-Bastianich “magic” with “inspired” cuisine and an “extraordinary” wine list in a “glamour palace” setting where “gracious” servers leave you “feeling totally pampered” ; just expect to “spend a whopping amount” , or try the lunch prix fixe for “a true bargain.”
Leuca
Southern Italian · Williamsburg · $$

Chef Andrew Carmellini (Locanda Verde, Bar Primi) brings this all-day Southern Italian to Williamsburg’s tony William Vale hotel, offering a midpriced lineup of wood-fired pizza, earthy pastas and grilled specialties. The rustic-chic space boasts eye-catching accents from a white-marble bar to industrial mobiles hung above the dining room.
Ai Fiori
Italian · West 30s · $$$
Food 4.6 · Decor 4.6 · Service 4.5

A “Michael White triumph” on the second floor of the Langham Place Fifth Avenue Hotel, this “classy” Italian delivers Riviera-inspired dishes, including “sublime” pastas, via a “polished, unobtrusive” crew; the “glamorous” setting feels “so magical” , you almost don’t mind the “astronomical” tab, especially if it’s a “special occasion.”
Casa Apicii
Italian · Greenwich Village · $$$

Inside a lofty Village townhouse, this Italian specializes in seasonal plates, pastas and fresh mozzarella, with tasting-menu options for both meat eaters and vegetarians. Starburst chandeliers, leather banquettes and sleek velvet chairs set the tone, while apéritifs encourage lingering at the marble bar.
Paowalla
Indian · SoHo

Celebrated chef Floyd Cardoz has opened this Soho Indian devoted to dishes with Goan roots, as well as a variety of breads from the wood-burning oven. The space is largely unadorned, with neutral tones and whitewashed brick walls setting the stage for vibrant presentations.
Maman
Coffee · Greenpoint
Food 3.9 · Decor 4.0 · Service 3.7

With a “you’re-in-Paris” feel, these “cozy” bakery/cafes offer “tasty” French and American bites for breakfast and lunch, plus sweet stuff à la its “famous chocolate chunk cookie” ; the “cute” , shabby-chic spaces have rustic wood tables, and there’s a to-go version in the International Center of Photography Museum.
Narcissa
New American · East Village · $$$
Food 4.5 · Decor 4.2 · Service 4.2

“Talented” chef John Fraser puts forth “inspired” , “veggie-forward” New American cuisine at this “upscale” destination in the Standard East Village Hotel with serious “farm-to-table” cred (some produce is “grown Upstate” at the co-owner’s farm); its “lovely” , “sunny” interior and garden have a “relaxed” vibe, and the “fun crowd” adds “energy.”
Chinese Tuxedo
Chinese · Chinatown · $$$

Contemporary Chinese cooking is celebrated at this two-story locale set inside a former Chinatown opera house, offering both large and small plates including charcuterie, housemade noodles, bone-in steak and both spicy pork and vegan dumplings. Rustic walls, cozy booths and marble tables enhance the lofty environs.
Covina
American · Murray Hill · $$$
Food 4.4 · Decor 4.0 · Service 4.3

The “simple, refined” Mediterranean-American menu featuring pasta, pizza and wood-grilled meats will “please everyone in the group” at this spot in Murray Hill’s Park South Hotel; “inviting” with patterned banquettes, it operates as a cafe during the day for coffee and housemade pastries.
Momofuku Ssäm Bar
American · East Village · $$
Food 4.5 · Decor 3.6 · Service 4.0

The “bold” dishes are always “a wow” at David Chang’s East Village Asian, which remains “as good as advertised” , especially if you get the “addictive” pork buns or “grab a few friends” for the large-format pork shoulder spread; predictably, groupies “can’t get enough” – presumably even more so now that the "bare-bones" set-up has received a post-Survey facelift and expansion (possibly outdating its Decor rating).