North River Lobster Company

Restaurants, Seafood Hell's Kitchen
  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • 5 out of 5 stars
(6user reviews)
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North River Lobster Company
Photograph: Paul Wagtouicz
North River Lobster Co.

Once summer reaches its peak, Hudson-docked boat bars drown in a bustling sea of bros and watery beer. At Pier 81, North River Lobster Company, a former Florida gambling ship rejiggered with New England charm, offers a calm alternative to those stormy waters with fast-casual cruises. Bid farewell to overcrowded decks and deafening top-40 tunes—smooth sailing lies ahead.

ORDER THIS: Though the quality of seafood is surprisingly inconsistent—fresh Maine lobster scooped into a sublimely buttered bun is zipped with yuzu aioli while the fish tacos are dry to the core—the nautical cocktails are better balanced. The vodka-spiked High Tide ($12) is an amped-up Arnold Palmer, swirled with a hint of sweet peach in bitter black tea.

GOOD FOR: Escaping the city grind to impress your out-of-town, New-York-hating relatives. Sit at blond-wood picnic tables on one of three decks to admire the West Side skyline, and watch the river stretch under the George Washington Bridge and disappear beyond upper Manhattan.

THE CLINCHER: Undocking for 30-minute jaunts on the Hudson, the ship sets sail on a ride that feels leagues away from the city, making it easy to lose track of time—and your cocktail count.

By: Rheanna O'Neil Bellomo


Venue name: North River Lobster Company
Address: Pier 81, 12th Ave at 41st St
New York
Opening hours: Mon–Thurs 11:30am–11pm; Fri, Sat 11:30am–midnight; Sun 11:30am–11pm
Transport: Subway: A, C, E to Port Authority 1, 2, 3, 7, N, Q, R, S to Times Square
Price: Average entree: $14. AmEx, DC, Disc, M, V
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Average User Rating

4.7 / 5

Rating Breakdown

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  • 4 star:2
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Kelsey D

I absolutely LOVE this boat. I went with two girl friends over the summer, and we stayed on for hours. Get there early, and get yourself a seat. It is free to ride, just pay for food and drinks. We took turns ordering a bucket of beer, and I had a lobster roll which was delicious! You can continue to ride the boat as many time as you want, or get off after one round when it redocks. Can't wait until it is nice enough to do this again!

Moriah S

I love the lobster boat!!! It's definitely a scene but seems more relaxed than Frying Pan. Come early if you want to get seats and bring sunscreen. It's free to get on and you can stay on as long as you like. Their schedule is on the website and they're very punctual but in case you miss the boat, they have a bar on the dock so you're able to enjoy drinks while you wait for the boat to come back. So far this is my favorite bar on a boat in the city!


I loved my experience at the North River Lobster Company. It's free to enter and you really choose for how you're paying by purchasing food and drink. I don't really recommend the drinks all that much since they tend to be watered down but they were delicious and great to share with. This boat is definitely more geared for larger groups since smaller tables and couples tend to get swallowed by the sheer number of people. If you do get a group going, make sure to lie and say that your meeting time is actually 30-45 minutes before the boat actually takes off because your friends will get left behind if they get there too late. Loved the truffle fries and lobster roll! 

lily r

I love the lobster boat. Great seafood that might be a bit overpriced, but when a free 45-minute cruise of the Hudson is taken into consideration, the deal is not bad. Great lobster rolls, awesome raw bar and good drinks, this is a great place to spend a leisurely summer afternoon. Maybe I have been there at off-times, but it is always easy to nab a seat and the order-at-the counter food/drink system makes for quick and easy service. 

Check on line for sail times, because if you arrive ahead of time and the boat is out (gone for 45-minutes ever hour and a half or so) you'll have to wait at the dock (which is not bad, they have a bar). You can also hang out on the boat while it is stationary, once it returns from sail. 

Alexis G

A delicious, reasonably price lobster roll aboard a gratis boat ride with delicious libations to boot? It's a city steal. Get there earlier than you intend to eat to compensate for the wait to get on the boat.