Seafood in Chicago: 3 new eateries to visit now

Photo: The Front Room Chicago/Yelp

If you've got seafood on the brain, you're in luck: we've found the freshest Chicago eateries to quell your cravings. Here are the newest places to check out the next time you're in the mood for fresh seafood.

Playas Nayaritas


3548 W. Lawrence Ave., Albany Park
Photo: playas nayaritas/Yelp

Newly opened Mexican restaurant Playas Nayaritas features an extensive seafood menu with options like a fresh coconut stuffed with shrimp and octopus; spicy pasta with seafood medley; and empanadas with shrimp and langostinos. Appetizers, alcoholic beverages and family-sized platters are also on offer.

With a five-star Yelp rating out of four reviews, Playas Nayaritas is off to a strong start.

Yelper A S., who reviewed the new restaurant on July 22 said, "So I had a taste for Mexican, my husband wanted seafood! So we decided to look for a place that offed both ... absolutely loved the food, everything was good."

And Sorphea C. wrote, "This place is hands down the best for seafood. The flavor is amazing and on point. The butter garlic snapper and shrimp ceviche is like nothing I've had. Definitely will be back and recommend to others."

Playas Nayaritas is open from noon-10 p.m. on Monday-Thursday, noon-11 p.m. on Friday, 10 a.m.-11 p.m. on Saturday, and 10 a.m.-10 p.m. on Sunday.

The Front Room Chicago


844 W. Randolph St., West Loop
Photo: the front room chicago/Yelp

The Front Room Chicago is a cocktail bar with live jazz and blues music, offering a variety of French Creole-inspired fare, including seafood. Look for the charred octopus with fennel and arugula salad; the tempura soft-shell crab BLT; or blackened salmon served with salad.

Pair your meal with the mezcal-infused Long Gone cocktail with lime, honey, ginger and Hellfire bitters; a pina colada with pineapple, coconut, almond and lime; or the gin-based Southside Gimlet with lime, honey, egg white and mint. Visit the bar's website to see the full menu.

With a 3.5-star rating out of 10 reviews on Yelp, The Front Room Chicago is still finding its way, but it's early days.

Yelper Haiwei S. wrote, "This place brought the quality of New Orleans food back to Chicago! I was so amazed by its jazz and upscale vibe. ... Highly recommend their lobster roll and crab cake."

The Front Room Chicago is open from 5-11 p.m. on Tuesday and Wednesday, 5 p.m.-1 a.m. on Thursday, 4 p.m.-2 a.m. on Friday, and noon-2 a.m. on Saturday. (It's closed on Sunday and Monday.)

Two Lights Seafood & Oyster


227 W. North Ave., Old Town
Photo: two lights seafood & oyster/Yelp

Two Lights Seafood & Oyster comes courtesy of Keene and Megan Addington, who are also behind the Tortoise Supper Club in River North, reports Eater Chicago. On its website, the restaurant's owners say they have drawn inspiration from their annual trips to the coast of Maine, where days end with "cocktails, oysters and laughs with family and friends."

The new casual seafood spot has a long bar and cheerful, pastel decor. On the menu, offerings include Faroe Island salmon tartare, tuna poke tacos, shrimp fritters with honey Sriracha sauce and a lobster stew with green curry. The full menu can be seen here.

Beer, wine and hard ciders are also on offer along with cocktails like the Islands in the Stream with gin, Combier grapefruit liqueur, lime and creme de coconut.

Two Lights Seafood & Oyster has received a warm welcome with a current rating of 4.5 stars out of 15 reviews on Yelp.

Sarah R., who visited the eatery on July 29, wrote, "The staff was friendly and welcoming from the moment we walked inside and the aesthetic is on point. ... Food was superb!"

Yelper Jennifer T. wrote, "Everything at Two Lights is evidently of high quality and very fresh -- can't go wrong there. The staff were all super sweet and attentive throughout our meal. We left with full bellies and no complaints."

Two Lights Seafood & Oyster is open from 5-10 p.m. on Monday-Thursday, 5-11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and 5-9 p.m. on Sunday.
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