Like everyone else who was scared off from Brooklyn Crab because they read the reviews that railed on its slow service and steep prices, I didn’t go at all last summer. Yes, I’d heard about the free putt-putt, which in theory could entertain my kids, but in reality–how big of a course could it be? I even read Max Silvestri’s semi-positive review last year and felt my stance soften a little. But it wasn’t until I was in Red Hook on a recent Sunday with family and friends that we decided to give it a try. While waiting (a short while) for our table, we started with pints in the GARGANTUAN free putt-putt and corn hole course–which practically screams “host your birthday here!”–then continued on to the top floor of this fun house, where I had a delicious platter of steamers and ate my son’s fish and chips kids meal (for $5, it’s worth borrowing a kid for an hour!). Throughout brunch, the harbor glimmered in the distance and a delicious breeze blew through the open windows, the kind of summer-y ambience you leave the city for. So sure, there are some pricey items on the menu, but the place is an experience, a very fun experience if you come with the right frame of mind, and you’d be hard-pressed not to enjoy yourself on a Monday or Tuesday when they have $1 oysters (Barcats, from the Chesapeake) and $2 Gansett beers all day and night. The special lasts until October 8, so if you have a birthday that falls on one of those weeknights between now and then, you know where to drag your friends.—N.D.