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South Street Seaport booms with outdoor movie screenings, open-air farmers' markets and a beer garden during warmer months, but its year-round appeal gets bolstered with this waterfront 6,000-square-foot restaurant from Financial District empire builder Abraham Merchant (Watermark Bar, Clinton Hall). Boasting floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the East River, the vast dining room is decorated with wood tables made from European truck flatbeds, a 12-seat chef's counter across from the open kitchen and curtain-style doors that open onto the esplanade, complemented by a 1,500-square-foot patio lined with white-oak beer-hall tables and plush couches. Chef Marco Allen's menu plays up the seafront locale (shrimp over grits, cedar-planked salmon in ginger vinaigrette), while also turning out wood-fired plates like a sopressata-pecorino pizza, a sirloin topped with smoked pepper salsa and squash gratin layered with zucchini, eggplant and tomato-basil pistou. From the pewter-topped horseshoe bar, expect both craft (Delirium Tremens, Harpoon IPA) and big-brand drafts (Stella Artois, Coors), and 10 seaside-inspired cocktails such as the Shoes Optional (cachaça, mescal, lime) and the Bourbon Berry (elderflower, blackberry compote).
70 South St
|Cross street:||between Maiden Ln and Pine St|
|Transport:||Subway: 2, 3 to Wall St|
|Price:||Average main course: $15. AmEx, Disc, MC, V.|
|Opening hours:||Mon-Fri 11am-11pm; Sat, Sun 10am-11pm|
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