On a recent Sunday afternoon myself and three others decided to try our hand at a little lobster boating. Thats not to say we went in a boat and tried to catch a lobster, rather, we got on a floating lobster shack and tried to eat a lobster. To do that we turned our attention to the North River Lobster Company here in NYC. The company and its boat is located at Pier 81 in Manhattan along the Hudson river. For $10 you can buy a ticket to board the boat, and take a 45 minute ride up and down the Hudson, all while eating and drinking until your heart’s content.
There are two types of passes at North River, single use and a seasonal pass. Seasonal passes are $50 and afford you the opportunity boarding the boat 7 days a week during the summer season. Single use passes are $10 and let you board as many times as you want for a single day. When you buy the pass the website will ask you to pick a time. Its important to note however that you do not actually have to show up at that time, in fact you can board at any time of the day. Once you’re on board you can stay on board for as many of the 45 minute trips as you’d like. It ends up going by rather quickly so 2-3 trips is probably good for most people, though I could certainly see myself staying on for every long.
Once you’re on board you’ll want to acquire a seat in one of the many sections available. My group and I headed straight for the top deck which is filled with tables and chairs in order to accommodate many parties. There is a lower deck as well as an inside portion but we did not spend any time in there except to use the bathroom.
After boarding, its a pretty typical restaurant experience in that there are waiters and staff to accommodate your needs. The menu on board, while seafood heavy, does offer alternative options if you’re not so inclined. We ended up ordering buffalo wings, truffle fries, and deep fried lobster mac and cheese bites on the first ride. Mainly drinks on the second ride. Then we all ordered the “Signature Roll” lobster roll on the third and final ride. The food was great, especially the truffle fries and the lobster roll on the potato bun. Click here to check out their full menu. For drinks we ended ordering buckets of beer which included 5 beers for the price of 4. Overall the food and drink prices were high, but that was to be expected. Any time you’re on the open water things are going to cost more, because where else are you going to go?
The boat ride itself was nice and calm, though to be honest it could’ve lasted a bit longer. You disembark from Pier 81 which is in Midtown Manhattan near Hudson Yards. You’ll proceed north along the Hudson River for approximately 20 minutes before turning back for Pier 81. From your vantage point you’ll get a great view of Midtown West / Upper West Side of Manhattan.
Overall it was a great trip and something I would like to do again with friends and family. My only gripe was the duration of the ride, id love to be able to ride this boat all the way around Manhattan.
Have you ever been on a North River Lobster Boat company cruise? Thoughts?