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Aug 30, 1999 12:24 PM

Misadventures on City Island

  • m

My partner and I went to City Island on Saturday for "A
Taste of City Island," described as free samples of all
the island's best fare. First of all, it took us 1 1/2
hours to get there from Brooklyn via public
transportation (4/5 to 125th, transfer to 6 to Pelham
Pkwy., Bx 29 bus). The commercial part of City Island
really consists of one street - it is quite
economically depressed, old Victorian homes with sheets
across the broken windows, abandoned lots. The entire
island is fenced in - not only is there no romantic
beach, the only visible slivers of sand are littered
with garbage. City Island must be famous for its baked
ziti, because all five of the restaurants featured in
their festival served it. We headed over to Johnny's,
and actually found it extremely depressing, despite the
beautiful sunny day - the tables were filthy, the air
reeked of old oil, and it is unconscionable to me that
a plate of fried clam STRIPS (no bellies on these
babies) was $9, lobster $16. I realize that just
because this is an island doesn't mean seafood is
local, but I still left feeling like I had seen a
perfect example of folks being taken advantage of,
particularly those with limited income. I've been
wanting to visit City Island for many years, but after
this trip, I won't return. Not even for baked ziti.

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  1. The only place we have found to be worth the long trip
    is the fried food place at the end of street - on the
    dock (if its a dock). Its not "special", and certainly
    not romantic, but the location is right and the food is
    honest. Its crowded on weekends. Public transportation
    is a rough way to get there from Bklyn!