Pilot, a new seasonal restaurant and bar on an historic schooner has opened in Brooklyn, NY, off Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Pier 6 on the East River. The opening has been met with cheers and a few jeers. The cheers are from those who enjoy the opportunity to dine on the water, and jeers from those who would prefer that the Highlander Sea, ex-Pilot, be restored and continue sailing.
The restaurant on the deck of a schooner is the second such venture by Alex and Miles Pincus, who also own Grand Banks, a seasonal restaurant on the fishing schooner Sherman Zwicker docked at Pier 25 in Manhattan. See our review from 2014.
Highlander Sea, originally christened Pilot, was a gaff-rigged topsail schooner built in 1924 in Essex, Massachusetts by J.F. James and Sons. Designed by Starling Burgess, she served for 47 years as a Boston harbor pilot ship.
In the 1970’s she was sold through several owner who used her for voyaging and sail training. Renamed Star Pilot and then Highlander Sea, the schooner was purchased in 2002 and underwent a major refit to serve as a community tall ship for Port Huron, Michigan. In 2011, the schooner was moved to Gloucester, MA and subsequently put up for sale. Her arrival in New York in 2016 was captured by Will van Dorp on his Tugster blog.