The food-related buzz about the Red Hook Ikea in Brooklyn so far has been that the cafe there will serve "unspecified New York specialties" in addition to the usual meatball fare.
But the real story is this, ladies and gents: The Red Hook vendors will now be easily accessible from Manhattan via the Ikea Ferry.
Starting June 18, the ferry will run from Pier 11 in Lower Manhattan every 40 minutes during the hours of 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Operated by New York Water Taxi, the boat will run seven days a week, so you'll totally be able to hop that ship on weekends. (The soccer taco stands operate from roughly 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.)
The ride is free, and it's open to everyone, not just Ikea customers. The Red Hook Ikea store opens June 18, and the ferry holds 74 passengers.
Pier 11 is on the East River at the base of Wall Street; the nearest subway stations are:
- R, W at Whitehall
- 2, 3 at Wall Street
- 1 at South Ferry
- 4, 5 at Bowling Green
Though the heretofore isolated nature of the Red Hook ball fields hasn't deterred serious eaters, the new accessibility will open the deliciousness to more casual food fans. What's interesting to note, too, is that the Ikea Ferry could potentially give Staten Islanders easier access to the Red Hook vendors than some Manhattanites—and certainly easier access than Bronx and Queens residents, and even some Brooklynites.
The Ikea Shuttle Bus Hack
And the Ikea Ferry is not the only Ikea-sponsored transport that's hackable for taco-related purposes. The store will be running three free shuttle buses every 10 minutes that you can catch at the following subway stations:
- Court Street–Borough Hall, Downtown Brooklyn
- Smith–9th streets, Carroll Gardens
- Fourth Avenue–9th Street, Park Slope/Gowanus
And for those pure of heart who don't want to mooch off Ikea, the MTA has also extended the B61 and B77 bus routes to run to "Ikea Terminal." That should put you right near the soccer tacos, folks.
Getting Fat in Red Hook, Part 1 [The Girl Who Ate Everything]
Getting Fat in Red Hook, Part 2 [The Girl Who Ate Everything]
Dinner Tonight: Grilled Corn (Red Hook Ball Field Style) [Serious Eats Recipes]
Comprehensive vendor info [Porkchop Express]
Ikea product hacks [Ikea Hacker]
Credit where credit's due: I wish I could take sole credit for this post, but our admin-tech mastermind, Raphael, came up with the idea of hacking the Ikea system.