I know some of us don't have our plans cemented for New Year's Eve -- a few are still waiting to see what everyone else is doing or if something else will come up at the last minute. Check out my column this week for some ruminations to that effect.
But, party peeps, I have one word of advice that might keep you from the last-minute nail-biting and 6 p.m. champagne-chugging spree that'll leave you passed out before the midnight bell tolls. Try a prix fixe meal at one of several local restaurants to start your evening. I did it last year at Kinley's, and honestly, for the price, it's almost unbeatable. We had a lengthy, elegant meal with wine and champagne and before we knew it it was time to head to a friend's party, ready to countdown into 2007.
The best part about set meals is that you don't have to wonder what everyone else is doing. An early seating gets you out before midnight, meaning you'll most assuredly have several voicemails and texts alerting you instantly to all the options that await. It's like a tasty little timeout before the big game.
Last I checked, Kinley's still had seats open in their three evening seatings. Read Mike Peters' dining column for a great list of options. Also, it's not on the list, but don't forget newbie-chic Ginger as a possible party venue -- they're fresh on the scene and offer an affordable menu that includes options like ahi tuna, smoked salmon rolls and lobster for just $55 (425 W. Fifth Ave., 929-3860).
Bottoms up, Anchorage, and happy New Year! Tell me about your night and any funny or horrid stories that ensued. I'm willing to bet that you won't be able to beat mine.
-- by Jessica Bowman