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“We love Joe's”
Review of Joe's Crab Shack

Joe's Crab Shack
Ranked #38 of 143 Restaurants in Gurnee
Price range: $21 - $30
Cuisines: Seafood
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children
Dining options: Reservations
Monroe, Wisconsin
Level 6 Contributor
82 reviews
48 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“We love Joe's”
Reviewed April 12, 2014

This was our second visit to this Joe's Crab Shack. One of our favorites! Great staff and great food! We will return and recommend! Great Sangria!

Visited April 2014
Thank auggie2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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165 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Rating summary
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Portuguese first
  • Any
English first
Roscoe, Illinois
Level 4 Contributor
29 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed March 31, 2014

We stopped into Joe's Crab Shack shortly after 11 AM on a Saturday. We had never been to one before, and I was surprised how empty it was. We were served quickly, and I really liked my by crab-stuffed shrimp meal, though the greenbeans that came with it didn't have much flavor. The kids meals for my daughters were a hit. I got a bite of one of their fishsticks, and it was so good. Of course, it wasn't gourmet, and it was greasy, as a fishstick usually is. But, I thought it had a great flavor.

I'm surprised by all the bad reviews for this place. We really enjoyed it.

Visited March 2014
Thank ccbasq
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
9 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Overall Enjoyable Experience, Good Food, Terrific Service”
Reviewed March 23, 2014

Celebrating our wedding anniversary and seeking something a little different from the local restaurant offerings my wife and I chose on a recent Saturday evening to make the trip to this Joe's Crab Shack in Gurnee, Illinois. The journey was worth it.

JCS has locations throughout the US Midwest .. except Wisconsin.

We arrived at a good time, just ahead of the rush that began while we were dining. All of the booths were full and, while the hostess offered us one of several tables that were available, we asked for a booth and were accommodated without a fuss. We were seated in a few minutes by another polite and friendly member of the staff.

The decor was familiar, also friendly, leaving one very much with the feeling of being in one of the seafood shacks on the American East Coast.

At a comfortable time after being seated our waitress, Amber, introduced herself, asked if we had ever been to Joe's and, after learning this was our first visit, offered several bits of useful information, making us feel to home. Amber was friendly and helpful. She apologized for a slight delay in service that was attributed to a group of 25 that had arrived before us. The delay was brief and understandable under the circumstances. That the reason was communicated to us was much appreciated.

We ordered sweet tea and a cup of New England Clam Chowder ($3.49) for each of us. The tea was just right, not too sweet, served with a lemon wedge "just in case", according to our waitress. The New England Clam Chowder was tasty, served at a good temperature, the clams fresh, the potatoes of just the right texture.

As we had visited the restaurant's website in advance and checked the Shack's offerings, we only needed a few minutes to confirm our selections. My wife decided on Joe's Classic Steampot ($23.99), a traditional shore meal including a Pacific Dungeness crab, a Snow crab, shrimp, smoked sausage, new potatoes and an ear of sweet corn. I chose the Arctic Bay Steampot ($28.99), the steampot including a Queen crab, a whole lobster, shrimp, and smoked sausage "...boiled in a garlic bath and topped with Old Bay® Seasoning."

In both steampots the shrimp, roughly half a dozen, were of good size. The smoked sausage was served as a link, good flavored and snappy. The new potatoes were also tasty, served with just the right consistency, smooth and creamy. The ears of corn? Well, it's March in the Midwest and sweet corn season is a long way off from this beast of a Winter through which we are passing, let's leave it at that.

The crab served in the steampot served my wife was sweet, flaky and plentiful. The Queen crab in my steampot was nicely flavored, cooked and served. We tried a bit of each other's meal to compare the difference in preparation, the seasonings.

The lobster in the Arctic Bay Steampot was of a small to medium size, its shell a bit soft, making removal of its hidden goodness easy. One of the critter's claws was off the lobster when it was served. Saved for last this pre-removed claw proved one of the few negatives in an otherwise enjoyable meal: I discovered there was no meat in this claw, enough to make a fella say, hmmmm, especially given how delicious this succulent lobster meat was. A second claw of that wonderful meat, given lobsters do have a pair of claws, would have been even better. It was expected, after all. The tomalley was on the heavy side, but it was easily cast aside so I may enjoy the lobster meat.

As we neared the end of our meal two gentlemen approached our table, first one, then the other, to inquire about our satisfaction with the meal and service. We understood these to be the manager(s) on duty. This is always a nice touch. It would have been a nice touch, too, had either or both thought to offer a complimentary beverage or dessert when I mentioned we traveled roughly 50 minutes to mark our 34th wedding anniversary at their restaurant, and it was our first visit.

For dessert, Amber mentioned the Crabby Apple Crumble ($7.69) and the Chocolate Shack Attack. We decided instead on the more traditional Key Lime Pie, and were pleased with the size of the desserts and its not-too-tart, not-too-sweet taste. The pie was served in a square, with a dollop of whipped cream and wedge of lime.

With local taxes our bill totaled just under $85. It was an overall enjoyable experience with very good food, terrific service, and simply a nice treat for folks who live well inland from the waters in which dwell the main ingredients of the meal. We look forward to visiting again unless, that is, Joe's Crab Shack expands into Wisconsin, helping us save the cost of fuel and time to travel to one of its locations.

  • Visited March 2014
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank 57C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vernon Hills, Illinois
Level 4 Contributor
39 reviews
27 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Worst restaurant ever!”
Reviewed January 8, 2014

This was a major disappointment for us. We went to one of these in South Carolina and loved it. This one was noisy, chaotic,slower than molasses service and terrible food. Don't waste your time or money--there are much better seafood places to be found.

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
1 Thank OperaDiva71
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Service and Cleanliness lacking”
Reviewed November 9, 2013 via mobile

Went to Joes in Gurnee tonight - waitstaff rather "seedy" - seated and waited at table for 8.5 minutes (I timed) and left - spoke with Robbie the mgr when we left he apologized for bad service but he was defenseless....I would recommend not going to Joe's Crab Shack in Gurnee, IL based on what I experienced.

Visited November 2013
1 Thank discerningtraveler14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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