Jersey City always guarantees good summer outdoor drinking at Surf City. You have the sand, the water, the sky—and the breathtaking view of Manhattan and Liberty Island.
I always look forward to tucking my feet in the sand, sipping on one of their signature bucket cocktails and admiring the boats as I ascertain whether any yacht owners would be willing to take me for a ride on the Hudson.
Since SC comes from the owners of the awesome Zeppelin Hall Beer Garden, there are 25 craft beers on tap. I usually go with Purple Haze at the BG, but SC’s Captain Lawrence Sunblock quenched my thirst perfectly on the hot day I went two weeks ago.
If you’re not into beer, which I’m often not, go for one of the Monster buckets (split it with a friend as they are strong and $18 and Do Not Drive!) I like the Green Monster, but there are four varieties to choose from and each can be made with either vodka or tequila and you can mostly mix and match the other ingredients (inside tip).
Like the BG, SC has communal tables and you walk up to the counter to order your food (though I found out on slower days, the waiters and waitresses will come to you). The wait is typical for a place of this size on a busy night, sometimes 35-40 minutes.
I had the wings, cheeseburger and fries—all are up to par. The Key West Mix salad is my favorite thing so far. While I want to try all of their seafood options (mussels, clams, lobster & shrimp roll, mahi-mahi—you name it), the food is a bit pricey, especially when you compare it to Zeppelin Hall’s menu—which is the natural thought process for patrons who’ve migrated here to test the waters. And let’s consider the fact that you are serving yourself. This year a raw bar is serving fresh seafood daily including jumbo shrimp, clams on the half shell and crab claws, which is more wallet-friendly if you only want a litle taste of the sea.
Surf City can accomodate 3500 patrons per night: It has plenty of indoor and outdoor communal seating and boasts six bars and four dining decks plus the sandy beach with lounge chairs, and If it gets chilly when the sun sets, move near one of the fire pits—so nice.
Getting there is easy: The light rail (Hudson-Bergen) and PATH (Grove) are nearby, and there is free parking in their huge lot at 1 Liberty Harbor (Marin Blvd.)
All in all, it’s a great place to chill and absorb awesome views and the calm that comes with sand and water—with all of your best friends.
Some of my summer pics below: