I Took My Sister Seafood Adventure-ing When She Visited Me In NYC
“The problem with eating is that eventually you have to stop eating. So then you’re not eating” — @AGreaterMonster
When my sister announced that she was coming to visit me in NYC, I immediately started planning our food adventures. We are both seafood lovers, so I knew it’d be fun to explore the many unique seafood establishments around NYC. We hit on three:
Grand Banks at Pier 25
Since boat bar season was starting, we kicked off our journey at Grand Banks, located at the end of Pier 25. (I would recommend heading to the pier around 3:00-3:30pm so that you can watch the volleyball players play with One World Tower in the background. Selfie away! There’s even a mini golf area if that floats your boat.) Grand Banks opens at 4:00pm so a line forms right at the hour and the venue fills pretty quickly. Our plan was to eat raw oysters at the bar. Unfortunately, the raw bar is in the back and we sat at the front bar so it was a bit of a fail. Regardless, the service was great and it felt novel to sit on a boat bar and sip a beer. They even provided cozy blankets for us! I definitely plan to go again and beeline for the back bar next time so that I can indulge in both a cold pale ale and their fine oyster selection.
Brooklyn Crab in Red Hook
Since my sister relocated to the west coast she’s been sorely missing steamed Maryland blue crabs. They are seasonal and we were in luck because Brooklyn Crab in Red Hook had just received their first shipment of the season.
Brooklyn Crab doesn’t take reservations for small parties but don’t let that deter you. BC is a huge space with two floors and a large outdoor patio. The waiting areas are filled with games such as corn hole or mini golf that you can play for free. We were seated quickly and ordered a dozen crabs steamed with Old Bay which in my opinion is the only way to enjoy MD blue crabs. They were perfectly steamed and came with coleslaw. If you’ve never had MD blue crabs then stop reading this and go! It takes a little work to shell but once you get into the groove, you’re rewarded with their distinctly sweet crab meat. If you’re lucky you might even get a crab with custard like roe. My sister and I could have consumed another dozen easily but we had to pace ourselves!
Lobster Place in Chelsea Market
To round out our seafood journey we had to hunt down my sister’s favorite food which is uni, or sea urchin. It is referred to as the “ice cream” of the sea. I heard that Lobster Place in Chelsea Market provides some of the freshest seafood in town. We sat at the sushi restaurant and promptly ordered two uni sushi pieces. The uni was from Santa Barbara which tend to be sweeter. We popped them in our mouths and immediately tasted cold sweet creamy uni that had just a touch of salt. The seaweed was crispy and the rice perfectly rounded out the bite. I loved it so much that I wanted to introduce it to my family and make it my beneficiary.
Having enjoyed such a delicious piece we naturally wanted more. Fortunately the market at Lobster Place sells whole sea urchin in the shell and for $6 extra dollars you can even have them prep it for you. It’s totally worth it bc they cut the spiky shells open, clean and present the uni on ice. We gingerly scooped out the uni and went into our happy place. My sister does a little shimmy with her shoulders when she is enjoying what she is eating. Don’t be surprised if your body does a happy dance of it’s own. :)
Get your seafood on
Hudson River Park
Manhattan, NY 10013
24 Reed St
b/t Van Brunt St & Conover St
75 9th Ave
Meatpacking District, Chelsea
I’m always on the lookout for unique food experiences in NYC and will likely insist on dining family style.