East End Fare Featured on Seafood Menus in the City
More and more restaurants in Manhattan are realizing that there’s little need to import fish from afar when there’s a host of aquatic ingredients to be sourced from right beyond their doorstep in Montauk. Bringing fresher fare and supporting local fishermen, these seafood spots are putting island-hopping on their menus to great effect.
Seamore’s (390 Broome St.)
What Michael Chernow did for the simple meatball at his tirelessly popular Williamsburg restaurant The Meatball Shoppe, he is now doing for underrated fish at Seamore’s in NoLita. Sourcing from fishermen and small-scale wild fisheries around the Northeast, the restaurant takes fish like porgy, monkfish, skate, and flounder and elevates it into po-boy sandwiches, tacos, or whole-fish feasts served with a choice of three greenmarket sides that change daily.
Situated on a street corner, Seamore’s can brighten even the dreariest of days with natural light pouring in through tall windows on two sides to drench flower-topped wooden tables and photos of Montauk Point Lighthouse hanging on the walls. As perfect as it is for groups though, Seamore’s is equally equipped to cater to those looking for a quick happy hour of dollar oysters and a glass of wine. Or, stop by the poke and soft serve pickup window outside to grab a bowl of the freshest sh salad and cone of dairy heaven from Brooklyn’s OddFellow’s ice cream company.
Rosarito Fish Shack (168 Wythe Ave., Brooklyn)
You know you’re in a true fish shack when there are striped napkins and Tabasco sauce on every table. Two blocks from the East River in Williamsburg, Rosarito Fish Shack is the type of place that keeps its lights dimmed, windows open, and bar open late, channeling in the breeze and cool passersby looking for a late- night lobster taco and margarita.
The Latin American menu brings a variety of interesting fare that sounds suited for casual waterside dining, like bacon-wrapped octopus and spicy slaw and fries, or a heap of mixed seafood—salmon, clams, homemade seafood chorizo, and more—for two. Many dishes, like the pescado tacos with chipotle slaw and Peruvian ceviche with dried corn kernels and sweet potato, make use of whatever local sh is freshest on that day. Smoky mezcal drinks and booze-infused desserts are equally good for nightcaps or to get the party going.
Crave Fishbar (945 Second AWvenue; 428 Amsterdam Avenue)
Like a cross between an old yacht club and modern fine dining, Crave Fishbar is relaxed but well-mannered, innovative with its fare but timeless with its atmosphere and ethos. Long Island fishermen ship over fresh, seasonal seafood to fill the raw bar and fashion some dishes like a spicy poke of local porgy with Persian cucumber, enoki mushrooms, and toasted macadamia nuts.
Other dishes require fare from places a bit more far-flung: salmon from the Faroe Islands served with kale sprouts, beets, and popped sorghum, or cod from Norway braised and basking in a porcini mushroom broth. Prime rib, fried chicken with cheesy couscous, and homemade pastas round out the menu. Nautical round mirrors, rough weathered wood, and touches of brass bedeck both locations, one in Midtown East, the other on the Upper West Side.
Almond (12 East 22nd St.)
When Bridgehampton’s Almond restaurant opened a sister location in Flatiron in 2008, it brought with it a crowd of loyal diners eager to incorporate a taste of their summers into their city lives, too. Homey and charming with lots of brick and wood, Almond sources its ingredients from local farmers, gardens, fishermen, and purveyors, and draws its inspiration from all around the globe.
As such, the menu is subject to the seasons but never fails to offer something for everyone: braised short ribs with gnocchi, Long Island duck prepared Korean-style, a comforting dish of tile fish with clam chowder and heirloom potatoes, and an extensive raw bar. Despite its clout and clientele—Bradley Cooper and Hillary Clinton are reportedly fans—the restaurant still maintains down-at-heal touches, like six types of croque sandwiches, eight types of fries, and four-hour weekday happy hours.