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Six foodie ways to celebrate Labor Day in NYC

By Rheanna O'Neil Bellomo

This weekend, during the Labor Day exodus, New Yorkers staying in the city will probably (read: definitely) have nothing to do while their friends jet off to the Hamptons for their last summer getaway. But there’s still hope for the locals left at home! Some of Gotham’s favorite eateries are opening their doors early, curating special prix fixe menus and throwing long-weekend parties. Here are the best of the food festivities: 

Beer Street at Humboldt & Jackson
Pair local brews with cheese and charcuterie at this weekend-long beer bash with live bluegrass performances. Party starts on Friday, August 29 at 7:30pm and costs $35 at the door. 434 Humboldt St at Jackson St, Williamsburg, Brooklyn (718-349-3355;

Carry-out clam bake at Grand Central Oyster Bar Brooklyn
The Park Slope outpost of this seafood spot will be packing up platters of lobster, cherrystone clams, mussels, corn on the cob and potatoes for take-out. Order for two ($35) or four ($60) starting Monday, September 1. Bonus: These will be available through the end of the month. To order, call the restaurant in advance. 256 Fifth Ave between Carroll St and Garfield Pl, Park Slope, Brooklyn (347-294-0596;

Corn dogs and peach pie concretes at Shake Shack
Normally we wouldn’t suggest forgoing a burger for a corned dog, but this is a Danny Meyer dog. The all-beef wonders ($4.50), as well as a Peach Pie Oh My concrete (vanilla frozen custard, peach pie slice) will be available Friday, August 29 through Monday, September 1 at all locations except at ballparks and stadium. Certain outposts, however, will only offer the shake (looking at you JFK airport) while others (Flatbush, DUMBO) will solely have the dog. Another reward for city dwellers: Labor Day is your last chance to glug down Shack X IPA, the shack's anniversary beer by Brooklyn Brewery, so bottom’s up! Various locations (212-889-6600;

Three-course lunch and dinner at The Gander
Choose from shrimp and grits, dry-aged cheeseburgers and “Brontasaurus” short ribs for lunch or dinner at the Gander on Monday. Jesse Schenker’s $35 three-course menu will be available from 11am–8pm and includes desserts like chocolate IPA mousse with ginger and black vinegar, banana parfait with saffron and a brown sugar corn cake with plum. Add brisket tots and cocktails a la carte. 15 West 18th St between Fifth and Sixth Aves (212-229-9500;

Fourth annual party at Maison Premiere
The Labor Day celebration—live music, absinthe cocktails—begins at noon in Williamsburg. Slurp oysters, sample chef specialties and order drinks until 2am. The menu includes tomatillo-dressed sea urchin, tomato salad and a Narragansett beer clam bake with corn on the cob. Seating will be first-come, first-served, but reservations are accepted for dinner from 5–11pm. 298 Bedford Ave between Grand and South 1st Sts, Williamsburg, Brooklyn (347-335-0446;

Labor Day party at M Wells Steakhouse
Instead of clinging to the last few days of summer, M Wells is unveiling part of its autumn menu. Don’t worry, there will be summer specials, too, like fish quenelle and lobster, veal kidney with sea beans and salt-crusted squab. Starting at 3pm, pay $30 at the door for endless food, but booze is pay-by-the-glass. The restaurant’s bartender will also play DJ for the day. 43-15 Crescent Street between 43rd Ave and 44th Dr, Long Island City (718-786-9060,


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