THE NEW ESTUARY AND EBB & FLOW EATERIES, AT THE BOROUGH’S OWN EAST RIVER MARINA, OFFER FORMAL AND GRAB AND GO OPTIONS, RESPECTIVELY
BY EVAN MONROE
NE°15 Brooklyn Marina, opened in June of 2016 and set on a prime location just south of the Brooklyn Bridge, was a way of addressing a strange city fact; relative to other harbor towns like San Francisco, Boston, New Orleans, and Chicago, New York has only about 10 to 15 percent of their recreational boat dock accommodations. With slips for more than 100 vessels ranging from 16 to 200 feet (its full capacity first available for the 2019 season), the marina boasts equipment to protect watercraft from wind and ferry driven waves, a Sail Club and School, a Community Dock that supports programs offering free and low cost waterfront and boating activities, and most recently the restaurant Estuary, a bistro presenting globally inspired dishes with an emphasis on locally sourced seafood, meat, and vegetables. Its focus, explained Culinary Director and James Beard Foundation Award winning chef Francois Payard, “is on simplicity, seasonality, sustainability and provenance.” The bistro is part and parcel of the broader ONE°15 Brooklyn, a quay set on eight acres between Piers 4 and 5 at the mouth of the East River, which offers the calmest waters in the New York Harbor basin.
Payard, a third generation pastry chef, honed skills at La Tour d’Argent in Paris, then moved to New York, where he served as pastry chef at Le Bernardin, later joining Chef Daniel Boulud for the opening of Restaurant Daniel, where he was named “Pastry Chef of the Year” by Bon Appetit. Payard is joined by Executive Chef Danny Brown, formerly Chef Owner of Charc on the Upper East Side and Danny Brown Wine Bar & Kitchen in his native Queens, the latter earning him a Michelin Star. He is also an alumnus of Circa Brewing Company, Artisanal, and The Cub Room.
“ e marina is thrilled to announce the opening of Estuary, as well as an adjacent grab and go eatery, Ebb & Flow, both helmed by Chef Payard,” said Estelle Lau, ONE°15 Brooklyn Marina’s deputy CEO. “He brings decades of experience and award winning recipes.”
Menu highlights include three variations on tartare, as well as tarts, sandwiches and burgers, seasonal salads, and a raw bar featuring oysters from Long Island’s Peconic Bay (part of a tidal estuary system, the lesser salinity of which has given its clams, oysters, and bay scallops a regional reputation). Specialty flat tarts include caramelized onion and goat cheese varieties, along with Japanese eggplant and plum tomato, Portuguese sardines and tomatoes, and Maine Diver’s Sea Scallops. Some standout shared plates are Fritty Misto (a dish of various deep fried bites), Pissaladiere flat bread with caramelized onions, black olives, and anchovies, and Margherita Flat Bread. Entrées include Hanger Steak Frites, Poulet Rôti (roast chicken), Branzino “en Cocotte,” Estuary Laksa Bouillabaisse (coconut curry, rice noodles, shrimp, scallops, and clams), Chicken Paillard, and Berkshire Pork Chop.
The décor of Estuary’s 5,000 square foot and 150 seat interior features suitably nautically inspired accents, plus an open kitchen for observing the action, a standalone raw bar, and an ice cream sundae station.
A centerpiece is the 28 seat U shaped cocktail bar, one that offers its own menu of aperitivos, local craft beer on tap, and cocktails showcasing Brooklyn craft distilleries and breweries (including Coney Island Brewing Company’s Merman IPA on tap). One of our late summer favorites is the Sunset Spritz: gin and prosecco further enlivened with raspberry balsamic and rosemary with a great acid bite, and perfect with lightly fried dishes and salads. The wine list, curated by Olivier Flosse (previously a sommelier for Missy Robbins and Daniel Boulud), features 24 labels, highlighting producers from France, Italy and the United States. Al fresco drinking and dining, while the weather permits, is offered at the 48 seat outdoor cafe, with panoramic views of the Manhattan skyline.
For faster and less formal sustenance, the associated Ebb & Flow presents an assortment of traditional viennoiserie (baked goods in a Viennese manner, made using a yeastleavened dough), Pullman sandwiches, salads, filled croissants, and slices of Payard’s layer cakes. Its “Bsquared Box,” a unique take on a bento box, is made to provide essentials for a day at Brooklyn Bridge Park, including a protein, carb, baby green salad, and the tart of the day.