One of New York City’s most famous restaurants is back! Following a 2022 closure, Central Park Boathouse is back in business, for dining, rowing and relaxing in the park.
On the edge of Central Park Lake off East 72nd Street, Central Park Boathouse has been open since 1954. Now, the venue hosts an all-day lakeside café and functional boathouse for row boat excursions.
Legends, which runs culinary operations at New York destinations including Yankee Stadium and One World Observatory, took over the city’s lease for Central Park Boathouse, and has recreated the dining experience.
In collaboration with Legends’ hospitality team, consulting chef Dave Pasternack (formerly of NYC’s Esca) advised on the Boathouse’s café menu, which is available daily from early morning to early evening (8am-7pm). Vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free choices are all on the all day-menu.
Picnic-ready morning options include pastries ($4-$5) and breakfast sandwiches, such as ham, egg and cheese on a kaiser roll ($9). For lunch, savory options include a hriddled dog ($6), made with a local Schaller & Weber hot dog, braised onion and mustard on a split top bun; a fish sandwich ($15) with crispy Atlantic cod, tartar sauce on a buttered potato bun; a lobster roll with chips ($25) consisting of lobster salad, lemon aioli and chives on a buttered split top bun; a grilled vegetable toasted sandwich ($12) with seasonal vegetables, pesto and herb goat cheese on ciabatta; and the namesake Boathouse Burger ($13) with secret sauce, lettuce, tomato, onion and cheddar on a potato bun. An $8 Kid’s Meal includes a cheeseburger, hot dog or grilled cheese, served with a juice box and fruit.
Salads and sides are also on offer, including chicken salad, chilled watermelon, frites with homemade mayonnaise, frozen custard and more.
To drink, the café serves both hot and cold beverages, including espresso drinks, nitro cold brew, fresh lemonade, juices, sodas and more. Craft beers, hard seltzers and wines by the glass can also be enjoyed on site, with local options including brews from Five Boroughs Brewing Company and Montauk Brewing Company. The café also serves signature Cocktails ($16), including an Espresso Martini with Tito’s Vodka, Kahlua, espresso and vanilla syrup; and Park Bench Bourbon Lemonade with Benchmark Bourbon and blackberry mint lemonade.
Situated on the north side of the Boathouse, the café has a separate entrance from the main dining room and bar, which will open later this year. The café has large patio-facing windows, an overhead display menu board, and a horseshoe counter where guests can place their orders. All orders will be packaged to go for diners to experience on the patio’s ample alfresco seating or to enjoy in Central Park.
And to work up an appetite: Row boat rental on Central Park Lake is back. A 150-year old tradition dating back to 1860, paddling through the lake is one of the best ways to take in the surrounding landscape and skyline. Legends’ new, colorful boats are available at an hourly rate ($25/hour) and will soon be able to be reserved online via OpenTable. Walk-ins are also welcome on a first-come, first-serve basis. No food or drink is permitted on the boats. Children must wear a life vest and be accompanied by an adult 18 years of age or older.
Central Park Boathouse’s Café is now open seven days a week. Additional Waterfront Dining, restaurant, bar, Events, and catering will open by early fall.