It's holiday party season and Westchester County is rife with restaurants that can do it all for you. From the most casual and rustic to the sleekly urbane, here are eight recommendations.
La Camelia in Mount Kisco
For something different this year, you might go Iberian at this authentic slice of Spain housed in a charming clapboard house (234 N. Bedford Rd., Mount Kisco; 914-666-2466; www.lacameliarestaurant.net). Chef-owner Antonio Alvarez, a native of Galicia on Spain's northwest coast, offers the kind of personalized parties you don't always find in larger venues.
There are two Spanish-style private dining rooms, both with fireplaces. One accommodates 30 guests, the other 60. One option is putting on a cocktail party with selections from the enormous tapas menu, which runs $35 per person with sangria. For a sit-down affair, also $35 per person, the main menu can be mixed and matched in any which way. Or you can go all-out with a roasted suckling pig (price depends on size and market price). The wine list carries some uncommon selections from Spain and Portugal.
The Olde Stone Mill in Tuckahoe
This 200-year-old stone structure has served as everything from a grist mill to a rubber producer to a pharmaceutical firm. Its latest incarnation is a romantic restaurant that serves a mélange of American and Italian fare (2 Scarsdale Rd., Tuckahoe; 914-771-7661; www.theoldestonemill.com).
For private parties, you can choose from three enchanting spaces, all with fireplaces, which hold up to 35, 60 or 100 people. The menus are not as refined as those at more swanky places, but the price is right: between $25 and $40 per person without alcohol.
Celebrate in the clouds at this posh dining complex on the 42nd floor of the Ritz-Carlton in downtown White Plains (221 Main St., White Plains; 914-761-4242; www.42therestaurant.com). Atop the tallest building between New York City and Boston, there are six airy private rooms with sweeping views of Manhattan, the Long Island Sound and the Hudson River.
The venues accommodate groups of 10 to 48, and you can also rent the spacious lounge/tapas restaurant called Bellota at 42. Chef Anthony Goncalves, who melds New American cooking with influences from Spain and Portugal, oversees the kitchens for both.
Party menus in the private rooms are extensive and range from a buffet lunch ($45 per person) to a three-course dinner ($75). Or you can opt for a lavish cocktail party with buffet stations for specialties like fish tacos, risotto and sushi ($118 per person, plus $175 for the buffet attendant).
The sunny, herbaceous cuisine of Provence is brilliantly presented here in one of the most romantic settings in Westchester (530 Milton Rd., Rye; 914-967-8140; www.lapanetiere.com). Set in a rambling 19th century home amid lush gardens, the color scheme is amber and wood, with antique furniture and bucolic paintings.
A romantic greenhouse with twinkling lights and views of the gardens seats up to 55; three attractive smaller rooms hold about 20 each. All have Wi-Fi and iPod hookups. Dinner parties with passed canapés, house wine and a three-course meal run from $68 to $150 per person. Service is highly professional.
This magnificent Tudor-style manor, built in 1907, has seen many incarnations over the decades but fortunately has maintained its dignity and graceful contours (1410 Route 35, South Salem; 914-533-6631; lechateauny.com). With a trellised brick and stone exterior, the magnificently detailed home features chestnut paneling, sweeping staircases, stone fireplaces and outdoor gardens.
There are three party rooms, one small and narrow for affairs of up to 10, and two baronial dining rooms with large fireplaces, chandeliers, fine art and views of the countryside. The food is a hybrid of French, Mediterranean and American, with dishes like pan-seared salmon in a polenta crust with Sauternes ginger cream.
Private parties for 12 or more people are $40 per person over the holidays.
A magnificent historical restoration of a once dilapidated pier on the Yonkers waterfront, X2O is an exhilarating space for holiday celebrations (71 Water Grant St., Yonkers; 914-965-1111; www.xaviars.com). From wherever you sit there are views up and down the Hudson River.
The main private dining room, a spacious aerie on the mezzanine level, is light and contemporary with well-spaced tables. It can be rented for lunch or dinner parties from Tuesday through Thursday and Sunday, and for lunch parties only on Friday. Prices for a three-course meal without drinks begin at $70 per person.
Secluded on a wooded 14-acre compound, The Farmhouse at Bedford Post restaurant is part of a complex that holds a luxurious eight-room country inn, a casual restaurant called The Barn, a bakery and a yoga studio (954 Old Post Rd., Bedford; 914-234-7800; www.bedfordpostinn.com). The dining areas, which occupy the ground floor of the magnificently restored 18th century farmhouse, make for destination dining any time of the year.
There are six options for private affairs: an elegantly appointed farm table for 12; the handcrafted wood wine cellar for 14; a cabinlike private dining room for up to 26 (or 60 for cocktails); a restored barn with crossbeams and floor-to-ceiling paned windows that seats 40 (80 for cocktails); and a soaring wood yoga loft that can handle 80 seated (150 for cocktails). All rooms are set up for iPods and the eclectic American menu is reliably excellent.
In terms of menus, a three-course lunch is $75 per person, and four courses are $90. The three-course dinner is $130, four courses are $135, and a five-course chef's tasting menu is $160 per person.
Inside the turn-of-the-century Southern-style colonial manse that houses Hudson at Haymount House, you'll find a giant ballroom that affords sweeping views of the Hudson River (25 Studio Hill Rd., Briarcliff Manor; 914-502-0080; haymounthouseny.com). The luxurious dining room seats 70, and the venue can accommodate private events of up to 200 guests, with the more casual lounge holding up to 40.
Chef Scott Riesenberger, who has worked in some of the best restaurants in Manhattan, serves locally sourced highly conceptualized fare. The party menus start at $60 per person without wine.