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Half Shell

Restaurants, Seafood Lake View
5 out of 5 stars
(5user reviews)
Photograph: Erica Gannett Crab at Half Shell

Time Out says

Grab a table in the tiny Christmas light–strewn room at this 47-year-old subterranean spot, and start out with the Mulligan stew. For more fried goodness, have the Thirty-Two Pointer for an entrée—a crunchy pile of smelts, perch, frog legs, clam strips and fat shrimp. And if you’re looking to crack some crab, splurge on the massive, meaty king legs.



Address: 676 W Diversey Pkwy

Cross street: at Orchard St
Transport: El stop: Brown, Purple (rush hrs) to Diversey. Bus: 8, 22, 36, 76.
Price: Average main course: $20
Opening hours: Mon-Sat 11:30am-11pm; Sun noon-11pm
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Users say (5)

5 out of 5 stars

Average User Rating

4.6 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:3
  • 4 star:2
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:0
1 person listening

This is a hidden gem in the city. They have great seafood with reasonable prices (CASH ONLY). When you come here you will not get the glitz and glamour. This is a down to earth, small establishment-clearly family owned. This place has the charm of a place you would stumble upon while on vacation. Christmas lights surrounding the area, a fireplace (never seen it used), and a bathtub in the woman’s bathroom (picture attached). What more could you ask for? The house salad is a must! Very simple but the salad dressing is out of this world! Whatever is in there, they need to bottle and sell it. They brought out the biggest oysters I have ever seen. They were cleaned very well and tasted as if recently plucked from the sea. They keep the dressing very simple with the oysters. The service is very laid back but always of quality. This is a place that you know belongs to the neighborhood, that locals go to and salt of the earth people will love. The star of the show is the KING CRAB. It is worth all the work, comes on top of a pile of fries, a side of creamy, melted butter and a sucker.  Go there for a guy’s night, go there for a date if you are seafood lovers. Hands down, one of the best places I would highly recommend. 


Stopped by here for dinner after work and cannot wait to go back. I suggest going when it's warm so you can enjoy the patio. The crab was amazing, I ordered a special which came with both King and Snow Crab. And garlic butter. And a pile of fries. Don't be afraid, you'll get a little messy between the garlic butter and crab but it's well worth it. The waitstaff was super helpful in describing the variety of seafood options on the menu and what to expect. Located on Diversey it's easy to walk from the Brown line stop.

Going into a cave isn't ideal for any reason, but to eat halfshell, I would do it anytime! They have the best drawn butter and it has just enough garlic to not over power the taste. I always have the king crab legs, its go hard or go home when it comes to crab legs. Its gets a little cramped in the evenings, so its a better late lunch grab for me.