So you want to usher out 2016 with a bang and welcome in all the possibilities of 2017 with a night on the town? Want to make this the night you stay up past midnight, kiss someone special out in public, and Uber your way home in the wee hours? That’s what New Year’s Eve is all about, right?
Here it is Wednesday morning, and you still don’t have reservations with a local restaurant for Saturday night.
Here’s the good news. You’re not alone. The bad news is this. The longer you wait, the less likely you’ll be dining at your favorite spot. Or you’ll take the only reservation available, and it’s at 6 p.m. At last check, the Open Table web site offered 61 area restaurants with available seating for New Year’s Eve, though many of those listings noted that only a few spots were left.
Tops on that list (ranked by Most Popular) were Ruth’s Chris, Varanese, Village Anchor, Stoney River and Seviche.
Here at EatDrinkTalk, we want to help. Some of our favorite dining establishments are gearing up with special menus, and they still have openings for you. Our advice — print this post and start making calls NOW. Be the hero of the family and get the reservation, then book the babysitter and make sure your best outfit is ready to go.
Some ideas (unless noted, alcohol and gratuity are not included):
At Decca, in NuLu, Chef Annie Pettry offers a prix fixe menu including appetizer, entrée, dessert, champagne toast for $85 per person. Optional wine pairing is extra. Call 502-749-8128.
At The English Grill in the Brown Hotel, chef de cuisine Andrew Welenken offers early diners a three-course dinner ($75) starting at 5:30, or a five-course meal ($125) starting at 8:30. Call 502-583-1234.
At LouVino’s two locations (Highlands, Middletown), executive chef Tavis Rockwell will offer a prix fixe four-course dinner ($70) featuring seasonal dishes with Southern influences. Specially selected optional wine pairings ($30) will complement the evening’s offerings. Seatings at 5, 7 and 9:15. Reservations available online only.
At Doc Crow’s Southern Smokehouse & Raw Bar, special pairings of holiday cocktails and signature smokehouse dishes highlight the night, with reservations available until 11. Call 502-587-1626.
At Bristol Bar & Grille downtown, the celebration is called Pappy New Year, featuring a flight of Pappy Van Winkle 12, 15, 20 and 23-year expression. The four-course feast ($95) features New Orleans style shrimp and filet Oscar. Call 502-582-1995. The Bristol is joining in with the inaugural Lou Year’s Eve Party on Main, featuring local arts groups performing until midnight.
At Bristol Bar & Grille Jeffersonville, the New Year’s special is a worldly five-course wine and food travelogue ($180 per couple) from Master Sommelier Scott Harper and chef Heather Brown. It starts at 8.
At Corbett’s Restaurant in the East End, chef Jeff Dailey’s elegant five-course dinner ($100) makes for a night to remember. Seatings are at 6, 8 and 10 p.m. Call (502) 327-5058.
At Equus & Jack’s Lounge, hard-working chef Dean Corbett’s menu includes prime beef medallion and Canadian rock lobster tail. You can enjoy dinner for $55 starting at 6, or join the second seating at 8 for $65. Call 502-897-9721.
At Butchertown Grocery, a special four-course prix fixe dinner ($85) with optional wine pairings ($40) begins at 9, with seating until 10. Executive chef Bobby Benjamin’s menu features chicken and waffles, steak frites and striped bass. The price includes access to Lola’s party (see below). Call 502-742-8315.
At Lola, in Butchertown, start the party with live music from DJ PYRAMYDZ (aka Craig Pfunder) and a finish with a champagne toast at midnight ($25). Order from the menu, featuring crave-worthy snacks and a cash bar, from 6 p.m. to midnight. Call 502-749-6323.
At Brasserie Provence, you have two prix fixe options. Early birds pay $49 for a three-course meal from 5 – 6:30. Starting at 7:30, Chef Guy Genoud offers a four-course masterpiece at $79. Call 502-883-3153.
At The Levee at the River House, enjoy a full evening of entertainment from Radiotronic, while sampling an all-you-can-eat buffet ($125) of kitchen favorites including charcuterie and cheese, crudité, flatbreads, bacon-wrapped scallops, beef crostini, sliders, and more. Cost includes all-you-can-drink well and call liquor, house wines, and domestic beers. Dancing is encouraged. Call 502-897-5000.
At 21C Museum Hotel and Proof on Main, Executive chef Mike Wajda will prepare a special four-course table d’ hote menu ($67-$78) featuring savory holiday specials, including seared scallops with pumpkin miso, charred broccoli, pickled peanut and yuzu vin and Woodland Farm porchetta with fennel pollen, kale and turnips. Seating is from 5:30 – 11 p.m. Afterward, explore the museum and dance to the music of DJ Matt Coxx, plus enjoy live performances, starting at 9. There is a premium cash bar provided by Michter’s Whiskeys and Against the Grain Brewery. Admission is $59, and includes two drink tickets and a party favor. Check it out at 21cMuseumHotel.eventbrite.com.
AND ON SUNDAY. . .
In the tradition of Lynn’s Paradise Cafe Pajama Party, you can go to Noosh Nosh in flannel pants, robes and slippers from 8 to 2. It’s a family friendly party with awards going to those with the most creative attire. Enjoy chef Anoosh Shariat’s signature breakfast and lunch dishes. Or get your traditional Southern good-luck-themed entrees made with black-eyed peas and collard greens. Also there will be a build-your-own Bloody Mary bar, signature cocktails and specialty coffees. For more information, visit Noosh Nosh on Facebook.