South Street Seaport’s effort to transform itself from a rowdy tourist destination to an actual hot spot will continue this month with the planned opening at Pier 17 of a new eatery by Michelin-rated chef Andrew Carmellini.
The chef behind Locanda Verde in Robert de Niro’s Greenwich Hotel is gearing up to open Italian chop shop Carne Mare on June 10 — the latest in a series of high-end eateries to take over the casual dining and fast-food restaurants that once dominated the downtown Manhattan Pier.
Think Florentine steak, spicy lobster spaghetti and salt-baked sea bass wrapped in fig leaves served tableside and finished with fermented chili and dandelion dressing.
It’s a long way from the days when the Fulton Fish Market ruled the area until it was forced out in 2005 amid development pressure. While there were efforts to revitalize Pier 17 after that, it was labeled nothing more than a tourist trap for years.
As a young chef, Carmellini used to go bar hopping at midnight — ending up at the Fulton Fish Market at 3 a.m. to shop.
Chef Andrew Carmellini stands on Pier 17 at Manhattan’s historic South Street Seaport, an area where he once enjoyed bar hopping