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New Greenpoint Waterfront Bar Will be on a Boat

By Serena Dai | February 11, 2015 3:02pm
 Brooklyn Barge Bar will be a bar and restaurant on a boat.
Brooklyn Barge Bar will be a bar and restaurant on a boat.
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Brooklyn Barge Bar/Will Drawbridge

GREENPOINT — Ahoy, Greenpoint — an upcoming bar near Transmitter Park wants to serve its food and drink on a boat.

Brooklyn Barge Bar is a seasonal bar and restaurant planned for the Greenpoint waterfront, at 91 West St., that would have picnic tables on land and seating on a docked barge.

The effect, said owner Will Drawbridge, is of a restaurant on a floating pier, similar to popular bar-on-a-boat The Frying Pan in Chelsea, where Drawbridge has done some consulting.

"It doesn't move, hardly at all," Drawbridge said. "It just offers an incredible view of New York City, frankly."

He hopes to open the spot on May 1. The lease and liquor license approval are still pending.

The boat would house the bar and kitchen, which would cook simple dishes like hamburgers, sandwiches and fries, with prices ranging from $4 for fries to $22 for a steak dish. It would fit about 100 people.

Visitors who prefer to stay landlocked would have access to 10 to 12 picnic tables, all outdoors.

Brooklyn Barge Bar would be open from 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. daily between May 1 and Oct. 31.

Drawbridge — who joked that his last name makes him "born" to work at a water restaurant — said he wants the spot to provide space for the local community, featuring displays from local artists, a farmers market and regular yoga and fitness classes.

He eventually wants to add storage for kayaks so that people can take off into the water from the area.

Being next to Transmitter Park, which opened in 2012, gives Brooklyn Barge Bar an opportunity to help make the Greenpoint waterfront more of a community resource, Drawbridge said.

"A lot of people don't necessarily think, 'Let's go out to the Greenpoint waterfront,'" he said. "We want to change that perception. It's got some of the nicest views in the city."

Visitors to Transmitter Park will have access to the bar's bathrooms, Drawbridge said, and he talked to Open Space Alliance about collaborating on community events.

OSA did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Drawbridge said he has also been in talks with authorities such as the Department of Environmental Conservation to discuss possible impacts on the area.

Despite the area's history of illegal boat parties, Drawbridge said his bar will not be "a raucous place" — instead, it will be a spot to have a couple of drinks and enjoy the view.

Drawbridge said he's been trying to open a place like Brooklyn Barge Bar on the Greenpoint waterfront for about two years now.

"We want to promote a local place," Drawbridge said. "We want to promote the waterfront."