I'm a sucker for novelty alfresco dining. Delicious food served in an out-of-the-ordinary outdoor setting? I'll buy that ticket. This summer, the waterways around Manhattan have some of the hottest seats in the city. Here are some of my favorite boats-turned-restaurants to try before the fall:
Grand Banks Docked at: Pier 25 Hudson River Park
New this summer, Grand Banks serves sustainably sourced oysters, seasonal small plates like red snapper ceviche, fluke crudo and fried squash blossoms, cocktails and wine aboard the historic F/V Sherman Zwicker, the last of a fleet of schooners that fished the Grand Banks of the North Atlantic (read more about the boat's fascinating history here). Tables are first come, first served and, if you like what you see, the boat is available for a limited number of private events.
The Water Table Sailing from: Skyport Marina (23rd Street & FDR Drive)
Cruise around New York Harbor aboard a repurposed Yard Patrol Boat built for the U.S. Navy in 1944. The three-course, New England-inspired menu served on Saturdays and Sundays runs $75 and includes chilled cucumber soup, a Maine lobster roll and an ice cream float, while Sunday's $50 menu stars lobster mac and cheese. Cocktails and craft beer are also available for purchase and reservations are required.
North River Lobster Company Sailing from: Pier 81 (W. 41st Street & West Side Highway)
Also new this summer is North River Lobster Company which specializes in, you guessed it, lobster in all forms. They also serve other seafood like shrimp po'boys and fish tacos, and have a raw bar offering. The boat goes out for a 30 minute sail every half hour (check the sailing schedule here). Beer and wine are also available and seating is first come, first served.