Last weekend, I boarded Manhattan By Sail’s Clipper City for a ride around the New York Harbor and a beer tasting from Brooklyn-based KelSo Beer Company. The spacious sailboat was originally built in 1854 as a cargo schooner, decommissioned in 1890 and, in 1984, rebuilt from its original plans with updated safety requirements. Now you can sail around the harbor on the historic boat or Manhattan By Sail’s second vessel, the Shearwater. Both boats offer a variety of sail options, from the daily Daytime Statue Sail to the monthly Lobster & Beer Lovers Sail, featuring food from Luke’s Lobster and beer from Dogfish Head.
I took the Craft Beer Tasting Sail, which occurs twice a week and features a variety of local breweries throughout the sailing season. Our tour guide from Urban Oyster was more of a beer guide, taking us through six brews from KelSo. The beers ranged from the brewery’s year-round offerings—a pilsner, an IPA and a nut brown lager—to its seasonal beers, like the Carrollgaarden Wit, named for its similarity to Hoegaarden beer and the Carroll Gardens neighborhood in Brooklyn.
Even without the added bonus of a beer tasting, the sail was a great way to spend an afternoon. There were amazing views of the skyline and the Statue of Liberty, plus the boat offered lots of space to sit back and relax. Check out all the sails available at manhattanbysail.com.