The ferry tale of Greenpoint

The ferry tale of Greenpoint
Photo by Jason Speakman

This New York City ferry tale is coming to a close.

It’s the last stop! This week, we arrive at the northernmost Brooklyn location on our ferry kingdom ride. Did we save the best for last? Greenpoint certainly puts up a fight for the crown.

The pier surroundings are quite industrial, but a quick walk down India Street brings you to the trendy Moonlight Mile (200 Franklin St. at India Street), named after a Rolling Stones song. It offers a dozen craft beers on tap, almost 200 options of American bourbon, whiskey, and rye, and a well-stocked, completely free jukebox. The venue also takes on a retro flair on Thursdays, with its cheeky Vinyl Nights.

If you need food before your booze, keep walking down India to Manhattan Avenue and turn left. Here you’ll find Jungle Café (996 Manhattan Ave. at Huron Street), a homey and hearty vegetarian eatery, utterly delicious for all palates and very kid-friendly. Try the mac and cheese with Southern greens and fakin’ bacon, then grab one of their fresh juices for the road — it’s time for a short walk.

Stroll south along the neighborhood’s vibrant high street, Manhattan Avenue, then turn onto Bedford Avenue to discover the giant stretch of greenery that is McCarren Park, which offers an Olympic-sized public pool and courts and fields for all manners of sports, including softball, kickball, and bocce ball. Also very popular is the Saturday greenmarket, offering produce from orchards, farms, and bakeries across New York and New Jersey.

If your exertions have left you gasping for some alcoholic refreshment, on the outskirts of the park you will find Spritzenhaus 33 (33 Nassau Ave. at Gurensey Street), a truly massive fairy-light-lit and wooden-tabled German beer hall. During the summer the walls roll up into the ceiling, giving a open-air, breezy feel to the proceedings, and its wood-burning ovens turn out a German-centric menu of sausages and pretzels.

Finally, lovers of punk music should check out the nearby Warsaw (261 Driggs Ave., between Leonard and Eckford streets), an old Polish music hall turned contemporary concert venue — and yes, they still serve kielbasa. The venue is closed for August, but starts up with a juicy selection of global artists again in September.

New York City Ferry at Greenpoint (10 India St. at the waterfront in Greenpoint, www.ferry.nyc). $2.75 per trip.

Less than a mile: At the whiskey bar Moonlight Mile, just one block from the New York City ferry’s Greenpoint stop, owner Garry Embry shakes up a drink.
Photo by Jason Speakman