On the Waterfront

The Seaport's pirates and brothels are gone, but a few old-timey spots remain

Meet Up: Carmine's With its weathered doors and life-preserver signage, this century-old restaurant is a lonely beacon on a stylish street. Ask the gruff-but-genial bartender for an Irish coffee and get a head start on dinner with an order of baked clams ($8) or garlicky mussels ($9). 140 Beekman St. (at Front St.); 212-962-8606 or carminesattheseaport.com

Fill Up: Bridge Café The city's oldest tavern is not just for imbibing. The distressed-tin ceiling, white wainscoting and worn, wooden floor seduce both couples and history buffs (the building was formerly a brothel). Once you're settled at the polished bar with a bottle of wine or some single malts, try chef Joe Kunst's rich root-vegetable risotto ($13) and oversize lobster pot pie ($24). Don't miss the butterscotch pudding with crumbled toffee ($8.50). 279 Water St. (at Dover St.); 212-227-3344

End Up: The Paris Ornate woodwork, arches and brick walls are vestiges of a former hotel, circa 1873. End the evening here with a slice of warm pecan pie ($6) and a snifter of brandy while taking in views of the illuminated Brooklyn Bridge. 119 South St. (at Peck Slip); 212-240-9797 or theparistavern.com