Watch Cooking Channel

Seafood Dinners Aboard the Historic Mary A. Whalen

I had an unforgettable dining experience last weekend aboard the Mary A. Whalen, a retired tanker docked off the Brooklyn waterfront neighbordhood of Red Hook.

It was a perfect summer dinner party, dining atop the deck of a historic coastal oil tanker with salty smells of the seawater and the taste of fresh seafood.

The 172-foot boat was built in the Mathis Shipyard of Camden, New Jersey in 1938 — just across the Delaware River from Philadelphia — and had a busy career delivering fuel products up and down the Atlantic Coast, as far as Maine and Maryland. The Whalen was built for Ira S. Bushey, a Red Hook company that is no more. After 56 years of service, she was retired in 1994 and returned home to Brooklyn.

The Mary A. Whalen, in her current home at the container port in Red Hook, Brooklyn.

She is now the working offices of PortSide NewYork, a young non-profit group that promotes sustainable waterfront planning by advocating waterborne transportation — which PortSide maintains is the greenest way to move people and goods — and by providing educational, cultural and social service programs for the community on a water theme. PortSide’s “H2O Arts” program includes everything from ship tours, talks, readings and walks to concerts, performances and movies.

A Supper Club series aboard the boat is in the works to raise awareness and money for needed renovations — I was lucky enough to be invited aboard for a couple test runs.

The first one came last fall, where a group assembled for a huge paella feast.

We enjoyed a paella feast inside the galley aboard the Mary A. Whalen.

“Paella was chosen for the first dinner because I am Spanish, and paella is a big deal in my family” says PortSide director Carolina Salguero. Her father had several paelleras (paella pans); the largest was about 3 feet wide. It’s hard to cook paella on a normal kitchen range with small burners — Spaniards cook them outside over firewood or on custom gas-ring stoves with several concentric rings of fire — but the flat griddle top of the galley stove is perfect for making the traditional Spanish dish.

The diesel-burning range is from the early 1900s.

The galley stove is a diesel-burning Webb Perfection Oil Range, patented in 1918 and manufactured in Philadelphia by Elisha Webb & Son Co. The company was founded in 1894, but is still in business and PortSide enjoys continued customer service on its antique stove!

But the stove is quite the challenge for everyday cooking for Salguero, who lives on the boat. This is partly because it requires running a fuel pump, holding tank and filter system to pump diesel in, but also because the large, cast-iron box can take hours to get to a temperature high enough to perform everyday cooking tasks, like frying an egg. The stove is, therefore, kept at a low rumble which serves the dual purpose of keeping the galley warm in the wintertime.

But there was no need to run the stove last weekend, when the Supper Club test-run returned with an early celebration of summer food. Guests enjoyed a lobster boil and fresh mussels!

Guests set the table for fresh seafood on the deck of the ship.

Guest chef Domenic Venuto shows off the fresh catch, before popping the little guys into the pot.

Watch those fingers.

Dinner aboard the boat is an incredibly memorable experience. The peacefulness of the water, passing ship traffic and looming port-gantry cranes make an atmospheric backdrop to a delicious dinner with friendly guests.

Carolina plans to launch the upcoming dinner party series with the goal of raising awareness and money to make necessary repairs to the Mary A. Whalen. The ship was recently determined to be eligible to be on the National Register of Historic Places, and PortSide is laying out plans for restoration that include repainting the exterior and interior, repairing the heat, running water and toilet systems, and one day, fixing the engine! The campaign will also help PortSide further its goals of getting a home that makes the ship accessible year-round to the public.

If you’re interested in joining a dinner party or making a contribution to the cause, reach out to PortSide here:

And for great seafood recipes, look no further!

Tags:

Comments (2863)

  1. Alex posted 12/24/2013

    Title…

    [...]that is the finish of this article. Right here you will discover some web sites that we assume you will value, just click the hyperlinks over[...]…

  2. cellulite products posted 12/24/2013

    Tumblr article…

    I saw someone talking about this on Tumblr and it linked to…

  3. acne remedies posted 12/24/2013

    Read was interesting, stay in touch……

    [...]please visit the sites we follow, including this one, as it represents our picks from the web[...]……

  4. medical billing and coding jobs from home…

    [...]that would be the finish of this report. Right here you will find some web sites that we feel you will enjoy, just click the hyperlinks over[...]…

  5. betting systems posted 12/25/2013

    Awesome website…

    [...]the time to read or visit the content or sites we have linked to below the[...]……

  6. Dry skin cream posted 12/25/2013

    Links…

    [...]Sites of interest we have a link to[...]……

  7. how to train your dog posted 12/25/2013

    Yahoo results…

    While browsing amazon I discovered this page in the results and I didn’t think it fit…

  8. Dry skin cream posted 12/25/2013

    Bored at work…

    I like to look in various places on the internet, often I will just go to Digg and read and check stuff out…

  9. Dog training posted 12/25/2013

    Read was interesting, stay in touch……

    [...]please visit the sites we follow, including this one, as it represents our picks from the web[...]……

  10. top fashion posted 12/25/2013

    Websites worth visiting…

    [...]here are some links to sites that we link to because we think they are worthed[...]……

  11. Designer handbags posted 12/25/2013

    Websites you should visit…

    [...]below you will find the link to some blogs that we think you could see[...]……

  12. cure hemorrhoids posted 12/25/2013

    You should check this out…

    [...] Wonderful story, reckoned we could combine a few unrelated data, nevertheless really worth taking a look, whoa did one learn about Mid East has got more problerms as well [...]……

  13. sfreelance allenhttp…

    selectaamway titlname otter leman hanelle alleman moremaybe….

  14. pet supplies posted 12/25/2013

    Online Article……

    [...]The info mentioned in this post are useful [...]……

  15. under eye creams posted 12/25/2013

    You should check this out…

    [...] Wonderful story, reckoned we could combine a few unrelated data, nevertheless really worth taking a look, whoa did one learn about Mid East has got more problerms as well [...]……

  16. pet products posted 12/25/2013

    Informative and precise…

    Its hard to find informative and accurate information but here I found…

  17. muscle building supplements posted 12/25/2013

    Informative and precise…

    Its difficult to find informative and accurate info but here I found…

  18. Build muscle posted 12/26/2013

    Websites we think you should visit…

    [...]although websites we backlink to below are considerably not related to ours, we feel they are actually worth a go through, so have a look[...]……

  19. Tumblr article…

    I saw someone writing about this on Tumblr and it linked to…

  20. more info here posted 12/26/2013

    Title…

    [...]The information and facts mentioned in the post are several of the most effective obtainable [...]…

  21. joyetech vapor cigarette posted 12/26/2013

    Title…

    [...]here are some hyperlinks to web-sites that we link to since we assume they’re really worth visiting[...]…

  22. colon cleansing products posted 12/26/2013

    Title…

    [...]one of our visitors a short while ago encouraged the following website[...]…

  23. jobs in criminal justice posted 12/26/2013

    jobs in criminal justice…

    [...]one of our visitors a short while ago proposed the following website[...]…

  24. fast weight loss pills posted 12/26/2013

    Title…

    [...]below you’ll locate the link to some web pages that we believe you ought to visit[...]…

  25. Numerology 2 posted 12/26/2013

    Tumblr article…

    I saw a writer writing about this on Tumblr and it linked to…

  26. Pension Tracing Service posted 12/26/2013

    Bored at work…

    I like to browse in various places on the online world, regularly I will go to Digg and read and check stuff out…

  27. PC cleaner posted 12/27/2013

    Links…

    [...]Sites of interest we have a link to[...]……

  28. Reputation Protection posted 12/27/2013

    Just Browsing…

    While I was surfing yesterday I noticed a great article concerning…

  29. xbox live generator posted 12/27/2013

    Great website…

    [...]we like to honor many other websites, even if they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Under are some of them worthed to try[...]……

  30. free PC games posted 12/27/2013

    Related……

    [...]just beneath, are numerous totally not related sites to ours, however, they are surely worth going over[...]……

  31. 6 pack abs posted 12/27/2013

    Visitor recommendations…

    [...]one of our visitors recently recommended the following website[...]……

  32. gta 5 guide posted 12/27/2013

    Title…

    [...]very handful of web-sites that take place to become detailed beneath, from our point of view are undoubtedly nicely really worth checking out[...]…

  33. Sources…

    [...]check below, are some totally unrelated websites to ours, however, they are most trustworthy sources that we use[...]……

  34. Title…

    [...]we came across a cool web site that you simply may possibly appreciate. Take a search if you want[...]…

  35. Read more on this link posted 12/28/2013

    Read more on this link…

    [...]here are some hyperlinks to websites that we link to mainly because we consider they’re really worth visiting[...]…

  36. beats for sale posted 12/28/2013

    Title…

    [...]very handful of websites that take place to be comprehensive beneath, from our point of view are undoubtedly very well worth checking out[...]…

  37. zack childress posted 12/28/2013

    Tumblr article…

    I saw someone talking about this on Tumblr and it linked to…

  38. zack childress reviews posted 12/28/2013

    News info…

    I was reading the news and I saw this really cool topic…

  39. our website posted 12/29/2013

    Gems form the internet…

    [...]very few websites that happen to be detailed below, from our point of view are undoubtedly well worth checking out[...]……

  40. garcinia cambogia plus trial posted 12/29/2013

    Recommeneded websites…

    [...]Here are few of the sites we recommend for our visitors[...]……

  41. iherb coupon posted 12/29/2013

    Sites we Like……

    [...] Every once in a while we choose blogs that we read. Listed below are the latest sites that we choose [...]……

  42. florida betting posted 12/29/2013

    Yahoo results…

    While searching google I found this article in the results and I didn’t think it fit…

  43. zack childress Co Wholesaling posted 12/29/2013

    Informative and precise…

    Its difficult to find informative and accurate info but here I found…

  44. YouTube to MP3 posted 12/29/2013

    Sources…

    [...]check below, are some totally unrelated websites to ours, however, they are most trustworthy sources that we use[...]……

  45. Informative and precise…

    Its difficult to find informative and accurate info but here I found…

  46. cannabis seeds posted 12/30/2013

    Title…

    [...]The information talked about within the report are a number of the very best offered [...]…

  47. gothic tales posted 12/31/2013

    Looking around…

    I like to browse in various places on the online world, often I will go to Digg and follow thru…

  48. Estudio Viajeros Travelgenio posted 12/31/2013

    Tumblr article…

    I saw a writer writing about this on Tumblr and it linked to…

  49. natural fitness reviews posted 12/31/2013

    Tumblr article…

    I saw a writer talking about this on Tumblr and it linked to…

  50. www.mastersinmottion.com posted 12/31/2013

    Title…

    [...]we like to honor several other internet sites on the net, even though they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Below are some webpages worth checking out[...]…

Post a New Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.

c