10 Seafood Chains That Serve the Highest Quality Fish

Seafood holds a special place in the hearts (and stomachs) of many Americans, whether they grew up on the coast or landlocked in the heartland. It’s an experience that transcends geography, bringing together flavors of the sea in a variety of culinary creations. While cooking seafood at home might seem daunting to some, the allure of dining out at a seafood restaurant is undeniable. In the United States alone, there are over 20,000 seafood restaurants, each offering its own take on oceanic delights.

10 Seafood Chains That Serve the Highest Quality Fish
10 Seafood Chains That Serve the Highest Quality Fish

What defines a truly exceptional seafood restaurant? It’s not just about the fish on the plate; it’s the entire dining experience. A great seafood restaurant serves up the freshest catch possible, prepared with care and creativity to accentuate rather than mask the natural flavors of the sea. From casual fried fish joints to upscale establishments with white tablecloths and extensive wine lists, there’s something for everyone in the world of seafood dining.

In the realm of seafood chains, a few stand out for their commitment to quality, innovation, and hospitality. These establishments have mastered the art of serving up delicious seafood while creating a welcoming atmosphere for diners of all backgrounds and preferences.

One such chain is Red Lobster, a beloved fixture in the seafood dining scene for decades. Known for its vast selection of seafood dishes, from classic shrimp scampi to indulgent lobster tails, Red Lobster has something for every taste. With its casual yet inviting ambiance, it’s a go-to spot for family dinners, date nights, and everything in between.

For those seeking a more upscale experience, The Capital Grille offers a refined take on seafood dining. With an impressive selection of fresh fish and shellfish, expertly prepared and served alongside world-class wines, The Capital Grille elevates the seafood dining experience to new heights. Whether you’re craving a succulent lobster tail or a perfectly grilled piece of salmon, you’ll find it here in an elegant setting that’s perfect for special occasions.

No discussion of seafood chains would be complete without mentioning Joe’s Crab Shack, a laid-back eatery known for its fun atmosphere and generous portions. From steampots brimming with crab legs, shrimp, and sausage to hearty seafood platters piled high with fried fish and hushpuppies, Joe’s Crab Shack delivers a taste of the coast with a side of Southern hospitality.

10 Seafood Chains That Serve the Highest Quality Fish

In conclusion, while Americans may have had their first taste of seafood at a chain restaurant, these establishments have evolved to offer much more than just mass-produced fish dishes. From casual eateries to upscale dining destinations, the nation’s best seafood chains combine fresh ingredients, innovative preparations, and welcoming service to create memorable dining experiences for seafood lovers everywhere.

Legal Sea Foods

Legal Sea Foods began in 1968 as a Cambridge, Mass. fish market, expanding into a renowned restaurant chain with over 20 locations. Offering New England-style seafood like lobster rolls and fried sea scallops, alongside diverse dishes such as fish tacos and sesame-crusted tuna, it caters to various tastes. Some venues feature sushi, including the delectable lobster tempura maki roll. Despite its upscale menu, Legal maintains a casual ambiance, welcoming diners to savor high-quality, fresh seafood. From large restaurants to cozy outposts and even airport locations, Legal Sea Foods promises a delightful seafood dining experience in the Northeast.

McCormick & Schmick’s

McCormick & Schmick’s, a venerable seafood chain, boasts over 20 locations across the U.S. and five in Canada since its 1979 inception, headquartered in Houston. Renowned for high-quality seafood, its commitment to sustainability leads to varied menus by location, featuring local specialties like Maryland-style crab soup in Washington, D.C., and buttermilk fried oysters in Atlanta. Every locale offers a stellar raw bar and locally sourced fish cooked to perfection—grilled, pan-seared, or broiled. Not just seafood, they excel in steaks too, delivering exemplary steakhouse-style service across their establishments, making dining an unforgettable experience.

Ocean Prime

Indulge in the ultimate seafood dining experience at this celebrity-favorite restaurant chain, renowned for its top-tier offerings and commitment to sourcing the finest ingredients. With 20 locations across the nation, including hotspots like New York City, Denver, Kansas City, and Beverly Hills, it promises an unforgettable culinary journey. Delight in signature dishes like the custom-built seafood tower, exquisite white truffle caviar deviled eggs, flavorful blackened snapper, refreshing poke bowls, and an inventive sushi selection. For those seeking alternatives, savor excellent steaks and other non-seafood options. Elevating the experience further, its extensive wine list rivals that of any high-end establishment. Embrace the splurge for unparalleled freshness and quality.


Truluck’s, with branches in Texas, Florida, Illinois, and Washington, D.C., is a premier fine dining seafood chain beloved nationwide. Specializing in fresh seafood, their signature stone crab claws are a perennial favorite. The crab and shrimp Napoleon, featuring layers of succulent blue crab, shrimp, and sweet mango, is another standout dish. Not to be missed is their exceptional lobster roll, rivaling those found in New England. Pair your meal with one of their inventive cocktails, such as the blackberry margarita, for a perfect date night experience. Truluck’s promises an unforgettable culinary journey at any of its locations.

Chart House

Believe it or not, this upscale chain traces its roots back to a modest diner in 1961. Since then, it has blossomed into a network of 28 locations spanning the nation. Each venue boasts not only delectable seafood but also breathtaking vistas, whether it’s the Manhattan skyline at the Weehawken, N.J., outpost or the panoramic views atop San Antonio’s Tower of Americas. Culinary offerings include a daily selection of freshly caught fish prepared to perfection—grilled, baked, or sautéed—alongside indulgent jumbo shrimp cocktails and award-winning clam chowder, ensuring a feast for both the palate and the eyes.

Eddie V’s Prime Seafood

10 Seafood Chains That Serve the Highest Quality Fish

Founded in 2000 in Austin, Texas, Eddie V’s is a seafood and steak chain with over 30 locations across the United States. Renowned for its world-class service, extensive wine list, and fresh seafood sourced daily from around the globe, Eddie V’s offers high-end dishes like ahi tuna and parmesan-crusted sole. While prices can be steep, patrons can indulge in top-notch fare for less during the chain’s popular happy hour. Menus typically feature discounted delights such as lobster bites, crab cakes, and kung pao calamari, along with specials on wine and cocktails, making Eddie V’s a destination for upscale dining experiences.

Luke’s Lobster

Luke’s, originating as a humble NYC lobster shack, now boasts 30+ locations across the U.S. and Asia. Started by a family with operations in Maine, they offer fresh lobster rolls in-store and ship flash-frozen lobster meat worldwide. Their menu caters to seafood lovers, featuring well-priced lobster, crab, and shrimp rolls in a casual setting. Patrons relish the choice between Maine-style (mayo) and Connecticut-style (butter) sandwiches. Whether enjoying a buttery roll in-house or savoring the convenience of online orders, Luke’s commitment to quality makes it a go-to destination for seafood aficionados seeking authentic, flavorful indulgence.

The Boiling Crab

The Boiling Crab offers a unique seafood dining experience akin to a choose-your-own-adventure tale. Patrons begin by selecting from a variety of shellfish options, including crawfish, shrimp, lobster tail, and various types of crab. Transparency is key as the restaurant acknowledges that not all offerings may be fresh. Diners then customize their meal with a choice of sauce, spice level, and additional ingredients like corn and potatoes. With 23 locations across the U.S. and a few overseas, The Boiling Crab provides a one-of-a-kind culinary journey that’s challenging to recreate at home, making it a cherished dining destination for seafood enthusiasts.

Bonefish Grill

Welcome to our seafood haven, where even non-seafood enthusiasts find delight! Our diverse menu caters to all palates, boasting delectable options from the sea and land. Don’t miss our renowned Bang Bang Shrimp—it might just change minds about seafood forever! Indulge in our array of fish, from succulent salmon to tender mahi mahi and Chilean sea bass. For the ultimate culinary experience, explore our Perfect Pairings menu, offering tantalizing seafood duos and harmonious meat and fish combinations. Whether you’re a seafood aficionado or a landlubber, there’s something for everyone at our restaurant. Join us for an unforgettable dining adventure!

Red Lobster

Red Lobster, a leading seafood chain in the U.S., is often the initial encounter for many Americans with lobster tails. Beyond its namesake dish, the menu offers diverse seafood options catering to various tastes. Dishes like the Asian-inspired sesame soy salmon bowl with rice and crispy Brussels sprouts and the flavorful crab linguine broaden the culinary experience. Notably, every meal includes the beloved Cheddar Bay Biscuits, delighting diners with their irresistible flavor. Red Lobster’s relaxed atmosphere and extensive menu ensure there’s something to satisfy every seafood craving, making it a go-to destination for seafood enthusiasts nationwide.

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