Bob Chinn’s Crab House – Wheeling, Illinois

Over 900,000 customers in 1999 couldn’t be wrong when they spent over $28M, the third largest revenue for the year among independent (non-chain) restaurants at Bob Chinn’s Crab House in land-locked Wheeling, Illinois. In 2004, Bob Chinn’s was fifth in revenue among America’s independents.

Fresh seafood flown in daily to a capacious restaurant is the reason why. Turn-away throngs of patrons line up to order their favorite fish feast from a fabulous menu. Many indulge on one of the shrimp lovers choices, all of which are perfectly seasoned (or sweetened as in the case of the wonderful coconut shrimp) with a generous amount of right-sized, de-veined, peel and eat shrimp. You can have your shrimp hot and spicy or bathed in enough garlic to ward off the blood lust of even the most heinous vampire. In fact, if you’re a garlic aficionado, this is the restaurant for you.

Bob Chinn’s garlic rolls are the best in America and the main reason we terminated our Adkins Diet during a visit in 2000. Those garlic rolls are dripping in butter and caked with garlic. An appetizer sided platter of New Zealand green lip mussels features the biggest mussels we’ve ever had. Naturally, we opted to have them served with garlic instead of over pasta or with Italian red sauce. Another excellent garlic bathed appetizer is the edamame (green soybeans typically served in Japanese restaurants as an appetizer) for which Americans are starting to gain a greater appreciation.

Seafood choices from the deep fryer include beer battered fried fish, oysters, scallops or a combination of the three. The oysters are humongous and as fresh tasting as if they’d been caught off the Mississippi Gulf Coast. The scallops are succulent and sweet pearls that swim in your mouth and titillate your taste buds. Salads are garden fresh and the blue cheese dressing worthy of commendation. The clam chowder is as comparable as can be in Illinois to that served in the Boston area, meaning it is savory, rich and absolutely delicious.

Bob Chinn’s Crab House
3993 S. Milwaukee Avenue
Wheeling, Illinois
(847) 520-3633
LATEST VISIT: 2 July 2005
BEST BET: Shrimp, Garlic Rolls, Fried Oysters, Green Lip Mussels

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