A spot for a post-wedding meal that won't break the bank?

fork on tableT asks via the Facebook:

I am having a City Hall wedding in August and I am looking for a nice place to have a decent meal afterward for about 20 people that won't break the bank. I would like it to be an Albany restaurant. I have researched several options and they are just too much. I would like to do something that would work out to be $20 or less per person. Can you throw this out to your readers for suggestions? Thanks.

Sometimes it seems like there's almost no ceiling on how much can be spent on a wedding. But trying to keep the cost down -- that can take some creativity and flexibility.

So... got a suggestion for T? Please share! We're especially curious if maybe there's some sort of non-traditional option that might work.

Earlier on AOA: Planning a Capital Region wedding: catering

Comments

I don't know what it costs to "reserve" space because I don't have 20 friends (ha ha) but both Olde English & City Beer Hall have upstairs & patios available for private events. Pretty sure Mid-Town Tap & Tea will let you book the back room, too, but that's a bit further from City Hall.

The Orchard has a back room for rent, I am pretty sure you can do sub $20 there!

What has T ruled out already?

We had my graduation dinner at Mezza Notte and rented a room upstairs. The food and service was wonderful. A little far from downtown, but I think the prices were around what you're looking for.

Why not just invite your guests for a couple drinks somewhere? Your budget is food prohibitive.

Albany Pump Station would be great. The upstairs space is perfect for that sort of thing, and under your budget. I would also suggest Midtown Tap and Tea for smaller plates, a little more elevated.

Congrats!

City Beer Hall would be close by and that could be a fun venue.

Ala Shanghai also would be able to host your wedding reception at that price point and is w/in 20 minutes of City Hall.

Olde English's upstairs would also be super cozy and intimate.

My friends had a post-wedding reception party at the Schenectady Bomber's third floor venue. It was a relaxed and fun setting with nice couches/chairs and a tiki bar. For a fee, they also offer a taco buffet there which was delicious.
My friends said it was very affordable.

I think there's a similar option above the Bomber's in Albany.

Sciortino's could be fun. M-F Early bird dinner 3-5pm is $9.95 for all entrees. Spend the rest on happy hour cocktails.

That is really restrictive for a group meal, especially if you would like to add anything like a salad or dessert. I agree it might be better to take people just out of drinks, or maybe for tapas somewhere.

You could try Wolff's Biergarten - it would be pretty neat to push some of those tables together for a big group.

Many restaurants in the area can give you a private room. Buca de Beppo is easy.

Ask your favorite restaurant if they can do a private party, leave out the detail that it's after a wedding. If you don't need the red carpet treatment, don't ask for it by using the "W" word.

Perhaps the Hollow on Pearl Street in downtown Albany? Most of the items I've seen are at about 20 or under (sandwiches/salads hovering around $9-$11).

So glad to see someone else using this approach, which is essentially what we did 30 years ago. Instead of plunging into debt for a one-day party, we went out to dinner after a civil ceremony in our apartment. I'll agree with the folks who think $20 a head is a bit tight, but I also think the suggestion that you just call it a private party, not a wedding, will help.

Lombardo's is sort of a classic spot for this kind of gathering.

We ended up having our wedding lunch for 11 people at Creo in Stuyvesant Plaza. Since it was lunch, the costs were lower than a traditional dinner and we all drank a lot less than you would at night too :) Not a downtown Albany spot, but still close by.

We held a more casual wedding celebration later with 80 or so guests upstairs at the Pump Station and then an after party upstairs at Olde English. I agree with others that it may be best to take your group out for drinks and some light snacks to keep it under $20. If a casual vibe is good with you, Olde English's patio would be beautiful. Or maybe El Mariachi on Hamilton would rent out their patio.

Order food from local restaurant, pick it up and bring to washington or thacher park and have a picnic. Bring a frisbee.
Cater it yourself

I just threw a lunch party at la serre. It was affordable & delicious. The staff was wonderful & it is a lovely Albany institution. Also, it is a short walk from city hall. You can also grab drinks afterwards at a number of downtown bars afterwards.

As soon as u mention "wedding" the price goes up. Wherever u go, just say you are throwing a lunch for some family & friends.

Best wishes!

Tawasentha Room at Normanside Country Club.
My mother hosted an event lunch for family & friends, about 20 people.
We were pleased with the setting, the food, and the service.
Price was under $20pp. I agree with the others, mention the 'w' word & the price quadruples.

At that price point, in August? Skip a real meal and head to Emack & Bolio's for ice cream.

Beautiful side garden, bathrooms inside and access to AC. You can easily celebrate with a custom cake or let each of your guests choose their own creation.

I appreciate all of the suggestions and well-wishes. I have already checked out the Pump Station, La Serre, Jack's, Athos, The Standard, and a few other local spots. I am coming to the conclusion (as others have mentioned) that what I'm looking for may not be possible...I'm thinking that an a la carte lunch might be the way to go, as long as the venue could accommodate that many people.

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