If you're a fan of seafood, then you know that calamari is one of the most delicious and versatile options out there. Whether you like it fried, grilled, or sautéed, there's no denying the incredible flavor and texture of this delicious dish.
And if you're in Chicago, you're in luck, because there are plenty of fantastic restaurants serving up some of the best calamari you'll ever taste.
But with so many options to choose from, it can be hard to know where to start. That's why we've put together a comprehensive guide to the best places for calamari in Chicago.
From upscale seafood restaurants to casual neighborhood joints, we've scoured the city to find the most delicious, perfectly cooked calamari around.
No matter what your preferences or budget, we've got you covered. Whether you're looking for classic fried calamari with a zesty marinara sauce, or something a little more adventurous like grilled squid with a spicy aioli dip, we've found the best spots in town to satisfy your cravings.
So sit back, relax, and get ready to discover the best calamari Chicago has to offer.
1. Joe's Seafood
If you're in the mood for calamari, Joe's Seafood is the place to be.
With deliciously fried calamari and other seafood options like lobster, shrimp, and crab cakes, Joe's Seafood is a must-visit for any seafood lover.
The portions are generous and well-priced, and the service is outstanding. The atmosphere is peaceful and diverse, with classical music playing in the background.
Joe's Seafood is definitely worth checking out for your next seafood craving.
2. Shaw's Crab House
Shaw's Crab House is a retro seafood restaurant and oyster bar that serves classic fare and sushi in a relaxed space with a vintage vibe.
The restaurant is a go-to spot for seafood lovers who want to indulge in delicious and well-prepared dishes.
The calamari is a must-try and is cooked to perfection. The batter is flavorful, and the calamari is not too chewy.
The staff is friendly and attentive, making the dining experience enjoyable. Shaw's Crab House is a great place to visit for a comfortable dining experience with family and friends.
3. Volare Ristorante Italiano
Volare Ristorante Italiano is a must-visit place for calamari lovers. Their calamari is cooked to perfection, crispy on the outside and tender on the inside.
The lemon balsamic vinaigrette adds a tangy flavor that perfectly complements the dish. The restaurant has a cozy and traditional ambiance, making it a great place for a romantic dinner or a night out with friends.
The service is excellent, with attentive and friendly staff always ready to assist. The menu offers a variety of Italian dishes, including seafood and pasta, making it a great spot to satisfy any craving.
Volare Ristorante Italiano is definitely worth a visit for anyone looking for delicious calamari and authentic Italian cuisine.
4. Calo Ristorante
Calo Ristorante is a must-visit for calamari lovers. This family-owned Italian eatery has been serving delectable Italian and American cuisine since 1963.
The casual, old-world setting adds to the charm of this place. The portions are generous, and the service is excellent.
The calamari is crispy, tender, and bursting with flavor. The menu offers a variety of seafood and steak options for those looking for something more.
The dedicated parking lot across the street is a huge plus. Give this place a try and indulge in some of the best calamari in town.
5. Eddie V's Prime Seafood
Eddie V's Prime Seafood is an elegant and upscale seafood restaurant that offers a variety of dishes, including calamari.
The restaurant provides exceptional service and a refined atmosphere, making it an ideal place for a special occasion or a nice dinner. The calamari is one of the highlights of the menu, and customers have praised its taste and quality.
In addition to the calamari, Eddie V's Prime Seafood offers a wide range of seafood and steak options. The restaurant also features a cocktail lounge with live jazz music, adding to the overall experience.
If you're looking for a high-end dining experience with exceptional service and delicious calamari, Eddie V's Prime Seafood is the place to go.
6. Viaggio Restaurant Chicago
Viaggio Restaurant Chicago is a must-visit spot for calamari lovers. The restaurant offers upscale Italian-American cuisine in a relaxed and stylish setting.
The portions are generous, and the calamari is cooked to perfection. The service is excellent, and the staff is knowledgeable about the menu and wine selection.
The atmosphere is warm and welcoming, making it an ideal place for a romantic dinner or a night out with friends.
The prices are fair, and the restaurant is conveniently located near the United Center. Don't miss out on the opportunity to try the calamari at Viaggio Restaurant Chicago.
7. Franco's Ristorante
Franco's Ristorante is a charming Italian restaurant that serves up some seriously delicious calamari.
The atmosphere is cozy and romantic, perfect for a date night or a small gathering with friends. The service is friendly and attentive, and the food is cooked to perfection.
The calamari is crispy and flavorful, and pairs perfectly with a glass of wine from their extensive selection.
If you're looking for a great spot for calamari, Franco's Ristorante is definitely worth a visit.
8. Ciccio Mio
Looking for the best calamari in town, look no further than Ciccio Mio. This charming Italian restaurant boasts an impeccable service, cozy ambiance, and delicious food.
The menu is filled with classic Italian dishes, but the calamari is a standout.
Perfectly cooked and seasoned, it's a must-try for seafood lovers. The low-lit setting and art-lined walls make for an elegant atmosphere, perfect for a date night or special occasion.
Don't miss out on the chance to dine at this fashionable Italian spot.
9. Il Porcellino
Il Porcellino is a lively Italian restaurant and bar that serves up delicious calamari.
The atmosphere is casual-chic and vibrant, with housemade pastas, Italian specials, and wine in wicker-wrapped bottles. The staff is friendly and knowledgeable.
The calamari is cooked to perfection, with just the right amount of crispiness. It's a great spot for a night out with friends or a date night.
Highly recommended for anyone looking for delicious calamari in a fun and lively atmosphere.
10. Hugo's Frog Bar & Fish House
Hugo's Frog Bar & Fish House is an upscale seafood restaurant that serves some of the best calamari in town.
The dish is perfectly cooked, crispy, and packed with flavor. The restaurant's contemporary setting and attentive service make it a great place for a special night out.
In addition to calamari, Hugo's offers an impressive selection of fresh seafood and steaks.
Whether you're a seafood lover or a steak aficionado, Hugo's Frog Bar & Fish House is definitely worth a visit.
11. Mart Anthony's Italian Restaurant
Mart Anthony's Italian Restaurant is a must-visit for calamari lovers. The Griller Calamari is a unique dish with a spicy and smoky flavor that will leave you wanting more.
The restaurant has a classic Italian ambiance, with black and white photographs of Chicago icons lining the walls.
The friendly service and ample seating make it a great spot for a night out with friends or family.
Don't miss out on the other Italian specialties and homemade desserts, like the Tiramisu. Mart Anthony's Italian Restaurant is a gem of a place that should not be missed.
12. Harry Caray's Italian Steakhouse
If you're in the mood for calamari, Harry Caray's Italian Steakhouse is a great place to visit.
The atmosphere is upscale and the staff is attentive. The calamari is amazing and definitely worth trying.
The menu also offers a variety of other delicious dishes, including steak and Italian fare. The sports memorabilia adds a unique touch to the ambiance.
If you're in the area and craving calamari, Harry Caray's Italian Steakhouse is definitely worth checking out.
13. Club Lago
Club Lago is a classic Italian restaurant that has been serving traditional eats since 1952.
The ambiance is old-school and cozy, making diners feel like they're visiting family. The service is attentive and friendly, and the food is delicious.
The calamari is a must-try dish, along with the chicken picante and veal parmigiana. The portions are generous, and the prices are reasonable for the posh River North area.
Club Lago is a true Chicago gem that is worth visiting for a taste of authentic Northern Italian cuisine.
14. Club Lucky
Looking for a place to satisfy your craving for calamari in a vintage Italian setting with a mid-century vibe in Chicago?
Look no further than Club Lucky!
Their calamari is crispy and perfectly cooked, served with a cocktail sauce that's simple but delicious.
The friendly staff, classic cocktails, and generous portions make this restaurant a must-visit for Italian food lovers.
Don't miss out on this Bucktown gem!
15. Piccolo Sogno
Looking for a place for calamari in the city but not sure where to go yet?
Piccolo Sogno might be the place for you.
While some dishes might be lackluster, the Spaghetti Neri and Fungi al forno come highly recommended.
The outdoor garden area is perfect for summer, and the staff is attentive and knowledgeable.
Give it a try and see if it satisfies your craving for calamari.
16. Kubo Chicago
Kubo Chicago is a hidden gem for calamari lovers. The fried calamari is crispy and served with a spicy aioli that will make your taste buds dance.
The restaurant also offers a variety of other Filipino dishes that are fresh and delicious.
The staff is friendly and attentive, making for a great dining experience. The outdoor patio is spacious and clean, perfect for enjoying a meal on a sunny day.
Kubo Chicago is a must-visit for anyone looking for a unique and flavorful dining experience.