The South Street Seaport is a historic area in the New York City borough of Manhattan, centered where Fulton Street meets the East River, and adjacent to the Financial District. After much destruction from Hurricane Sandy, the area has been revitalized and there are now many great restaurants and shops in the area along the waterfront and adjacent streets of this eleven block-sized historic district.
The Fulton, by celebrated Chef Jean Georges Vongerichten, was one of the first important places to open in the neighborhood and the chef’s first-ever seafood restaurant. The name pays homage to the famous Fulton Street Fish Market, once located on the site of where the new restaurant sits. The focus is on sea-to-table, with a wide selection of wild-caught and locally-harvested East Coast seafood, such as; oysters, clams, fluke, mackerel, sea scallops, lobster, black sea bass, and so on. Plus he brings in items like a Dover sole, Icelandic cod, and Santa Barbara sea urchin.
Besides the food, which is so fresh and delicious, this 7,300 square foot bi-level space boasts jaw-dropping and sweeping views of the east river, Brooklyn Bridge and skyline of the city. With floor to ceiling hand-painted murals depicting marine life, the decor mimics the previous nautical life on the docks, without being gimmicky. Instead, the design is informal, chic, and modern.
The Fulton is one of the best seafood restaurants in New York in a one-of-a-kind waterfront setting. The first-rate yellowfin tuna tartare with a yuzu mustard sauce and shaved fennel, and the extraordinary Florida red snapper ceviche with watermelon, red onion, avocado, and cucumber, were absolutely exceptional. The razor clams were I have ever had.
The restaurant has an excellent selection of daily items from their raw bar, and the freshest sashimi. The salmon crusted in exotic spices, with a fragrant coconut lime infusion and roasted heirloom squash was a winner. The Maine crab roll was also very good. Another winning dish was the warm and tender octopus with fresh mozzarella, lemon zest, sea salt and black pepper. They also serve a delicious avocado toast at brunch with Russ and Daughters smoked salmon and a perfectly cooked poached egg on a fabulous black bread.
For non-fish eaters there are a couple of meat choices, like a burger or a wagyu beef tenderloin. I didn’t find the prices offensive either considering the quality of food as well as the spectacular views.
We were lucky enough to go at the end of summer on a perfect day and loved eating outdoors on the terrace. Sipping a craft cocktail, mine was a raspberry-lychee bellini, or a house-made juice, like my daughter’s green juice of green apple, cucumber, ginger and greens, or choose from the large selection on the wine list, you will surely enjoy this impressive restaurant.