With the days getting shorter again, it’s becoming harder to take advantage of the nice weather on a weeknight. By the time I get home from work, there’s only an hour left of daylight and I find myself sorely missing my porch and hammock back in Ohio. If you, like me, have been looking for an inexpensive way to enjoy the outdoors on a weeknight, head to South Street Seaport’s Smorgasbar (http://www.brooklynflea.com/markets/smorgasbar-at-south-st-seaport/).
An off-shoot of Smorgasburg, every day from 11am to 10pm, vendors like Landhaus, Fonda, Milk Bar, and Red Hook Lobster Pound set up shop on the cobbled streets of South Street Seaport for Smorgasbar. Situated off the main drag on a narrow street of idyllic shops, a long row of picnic tables strung with pretty white lights buzz with the relaxed chatter of friends unwinding after work. Smorgasbar’s manageable size and lack of crowds (at least on a Tuesday) make for a relaxing evening, and with the soft thud of sandbags in the background (cornhole boards are available up front!), you may even feel as though you’re at your own backyard party. Hungry for Mexican, but your significant other wants pizza? Or maybe you just want both Mexican and pizza. Well, Smorgasbar provides the options with ease as short lines allow for easy tasting. If you’re in the mood for a burger, however, Landhaus’s was exceptionally good.
Once you’ve had your fill, walk out to get a glimpse of the tall ships. Free entertainment can be found out by the water as brave adventure-seekers undertake an acrobatic class while those lucky enough to have their own private, floating backyards cruise by on the East River.
Lastly, I suggest that if you have a bike, have a CitiBike pass, or have been looking for an excuse to try out a day pass, an even better way to bookend the evening would be to bike to and from South Street Seaport along the East River. Stretches of this walk/bike path vary from: middle-aged women line dancing underneath the FDR highway and fishermen set up with portable grills to cook whatever three-eyed fish they are lucky (?) enough to hook to suburbia-inspired little league games and quiet, sea-grass gardens far enough from the traffic to allow crickets to be heard. The best part of the ride though is watching the river darken from a steely blue to purple to black as the sun sets. But don’t get too distracted, you wouldn’t want to ride right into the river and come out with a third eye yourself.