Seafood Splendor: Chicago's Must-Try Spots for Seafood Lovers

Seafood Splendor: Chicago’s Must-Try Spots for Seafood Lovers

Chicago, a city known for its culinary delights and architectural wonders, rivals coastal locations in its seafood offerings. In the piece, we delve into the center of the Windy City’s seafood culture, highlighting eateries with daily catch specials and cooking skills as sophisticated as Lake Michigan.

We explore the best that the city has to offer, from the recognizable Joe’s Seafood to the storied Hagen’s Fish Market. Get ready to cast a wide net and bring in an abundance of tastes that this city can provide.

Boston Fish Market

Boston Fish Market, located in the suburbs of Wheeling and Des Plaines, offers what is arguably the freshest seafood available. In addition to being a restaurant, this market is one of the biggest salmon and whitefish processors in the Midwest.

The menu is extensive and includes items such as swordfish, mahi-mahi, and Chilean sea bass in addition to lobster tails, scallops from Georges Bank, and Alaskan king crab legs.

You can also cook a lot of things Cajun-style. For the best experience during the outdoor eating season, aim to get a table on the busy patio.

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Shaw’s Crab House

A Chicago institution, Shaw’s Crab House is our favorite place to have seafood. You can choose to eat in the elegant dining room with its white tablecloths or in the bustling oyster bar, where we enjoy oysters, break open crab claws, and drown lobster tails in butter.

Seafood Splendor: Chicago's Must-Try Spots for Seafood Lovers

Along with sushi and sashimi, the menu also features a delicious lobster roll that is linked together with only a trace of mayo. Go great with oysters, match your seafood feast with a classic martini or a locally brewed beer.

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Hugo’s Frog Bar & Fish House

This beloved seafood restaurant is shared by Gibson’s Steakhouse’s kitchen as well as the smart-casual tie-and-blazer crowd that frequents both establishments.

The atmosphere is a combination of boardroom and Rat Pack, with dark wood, leather seats, and career servers carrying enormous trays full of enormous Australian lobster tails, luscious and sweet Alaskan king crab legs, and enormous porterhouses.

Well-prepared vintage favorites—some of which are even addictive—are offered. We enjoy the frog legs with butter and lemon.

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Bob Chinn’s Crab House

Every day of the week, large crowds swarm this Chicagoland landmark, which provides an abundance of seafood, crab, shrimp, and lobster.

Seafood Splendor: Chicago's Must-Try Spots for Seafood Lovers

There are plenty of other dishes on the menu that are worth trying, but don’t overindulge in the incredibly buttery, garlicky rolls that start the meal.

Sweet Mai Tais are served in plastic tiki mugs that almost exactly resemble buckets; plump shrimp are prepared in a number of ways, including tempura frying; and king crab bits are served with butter or citrus crab sauce.

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Half Shell

The phrases “We close when we feel like closing” and “Nothin’ but cash, no exceptions” are just a couple of the amusing remarks we heard in a single evening at this over 50-year-old underground location.

Set up a table in the little space littered with Christmas lights, and begin your meal with a half-shell of Mulligan and a dish of deep-fried oysters.

Order the “Thirty-Two Pointer” as an entrée for extra crispy goodness—a crunchy mound of smelts, perch, frog legs, clam strips, and fat shrimp. And treat yourself to the enormous, succulent king legs if you’re in the mood for some crab.

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To Conclude

For any foodie, the seafood scene in Chicago is a nice surprise. Everything from the finest seafood at Boston Fish Market to the sophisticated atmosphere of Shaw’s Crab House has its place.

Chicago’s abundance of seafood is sure to please, whether you’re craving a traditional cioppino at Hugo’s Frog Bar or something more like a seafood boil at Bob Chinn’s.

Therefore, dive into the deep blue instead of the deep dish the next time you’re in the Windy City. Your palate will appreciate it.


With more than two years of expertise in news and analysis, Eileen Stewart is a seasoned reporter. Eileen is a respected voice in this field, well-known for her sharp reporting and insightful analysis. Her writing covers a wide range of subjects, from politics to culture and more.