Summer in Full Swing

BY JANEL BLADOW  |  Summer’s in full swing. Time to wander to the waterfront and enjoy the breeze, and at night, the bright lights, big sky…

Walk this way…
Last week saw the long-awaited opening of the lower part of the new park along the East River, between Wall Street and Maiden Lane. The new esplanade has plenty of cool features besides the magnificent waterfront views. The “Look-Out” is a series of stadium-style steps/seats leading into the water at the foot of Wall Street. You can literally dip your tootsies into the cool river water. Or, sit and ponder the river, the city, the universe with wide open vistas. Nearby, the new dog park is also yapping. And Downtown dogs are having a blast. They’re climbing the bridge, pawing in the sand pit, rolling on the splash pad and resting in the doghouse.

Several local dog parents have told Seaport Report how excited they are to have a new play place for their puppies. “It just gives us more options when FishBridge Dog Park (at Pearl and Dover Streets.) is crowded and during the day when dogs can’t run on Pier 17,” said one dogowner. “And it sure beats walking to Battery Park on the west side in this heat,” chimed in another.

Cats & Rats…
Several S3 residents have stopped me since last month’s column about the rat explosion in the Seaport. They are all concerned about what the rodent infestation means to our pretty neighborhood. Some point out that the problem exploded after the City picked up and removed several feral cats living around the Brooklyn Bridge and other spots near the waterfront. The cats, some residents claimed, were providing an important health service to the community while not bothering anyone. In fact, most were too frightened of people and would only come out at night or eat treats left by cat lovers when no one was around. There’s a growing underground movement to bring back the feral cats. What do you think?

Straight From the Farm…
Want to get your veggies fresh on Saturday? Head to Wall and Water Sts. for the Andaz Farmers’ Market, 8 a.m. – 3 p.m., every Saturday through Nov. 19. Sponsored by the Andaz Wall Street Hotel, it’s the first farmers market sponsored by a New York City hotel. For some reason, the concept is a bit jarring to SR, probably because it seems such a collision of opposite worlds. But we Seaport/FiDi people are a complex breed!

Performing throughout the afternoon is the Melody Allegra Trio, a groovy bluegrass group. Vendors to look for include Migliorelli Farms, a family-operated fruit and vegetable farm in northern Dutchess County of the Hudson Valley. The family started farming in the Bronx in 1933 when the family patriarch Angelo brought some broccoli raab seeds with him from Italy’s Lazio region. School House Kitchen will be there too, selling all their tasty jams, jellies, mustards, dressings, marinades and sauces. Patsy Smith began her business with a SweetSmoothHotMustard in 2005 with the mission of raising funds for educational organizations and to make her gourmet products available to more people. Sweet.

And speaking sweetly, Orwasher’s Bakery, Manhattan-based bakers who are oven artisans will bring an array of their hand-shaped, brick-oven-baked classic breads to the market. Look for their crusty artisan wine breads such as the chewy miche, slightly sour levian, olive bread and fruit focaccia. Quattro’s Game and Poultry Farm will be peddling free-range chickens, ducks, turkeys and venison as well as smoked and fresh sausages. Everything you’ll need for a romantic Saturday night dinner for two or a weekend blast.

Top Chef…
New Amsterdam Market will have a master chef helming the grill this 
Sunday, July 24. You’ll want to stop by and meet, talk with and watch Galen Zamarra of Mas Farmhouse (on Downing St.) cook up some New American-French delectable dishes on his barbecue. He’s planning on tackling octopus, pork and corn on the cob. Stop by for a nosh or a nibble. N.A.M. President Robert LaValva told SR that Galen’s grilling is the start of something big they hope to continue. “We are developing the concept of guest chefs cooking ‘market fare’ with the aim of making seasonal market specialties available to visitors,” LaValva said.

And next month, the market will repeat a winner from last year: Ice Cream Sunday. LaValva is looking for some of the area’s hottest chefs to cook up a cool whipped cream, in an unofficial contest. Last year’s participants included: Roberta’s and Marlow & Sons restaurants in Brooklyn and The Bent Spoon of Princeton, N.J. “The focus is on making ice cream with local, seasonal flavors,” he told SR.

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