Friday, February 19, 2010

Don's Dock

-The Shrimp Shacks of Chi

Its the Lenten season and so the fish and seafood consumption is going to go up during this time. I don't practice the whole eating rules of religion or any of that stuff for that matter and I'm not going to get into anything religious over here. You know like Chris Rock said and I totally agree with "I have a hard time believing my diet is going to come into question in the afterlife" except that I will say that at least its an excuse to eat me some seafood. Don's Dock is a spot I've only been to once and that was late last summer and I enjoyed my visit there and will get back next time I'm in the area. The family run fishing shacks of Chicago's past are becoming less and less these days but a few with a strong history remain and Don's Dock is one of them. Owned and operated by the Johnson family who started commercial fishing the Great Lakes during the 1930's, they opened up their first market in 1939 and have been at the present location in Des Plaines since 1971 and have been running Don's Dock since 1951.

A familiar face along Northwest Highway

Since 1951 for a reason

Its a family run joint that has over 100 years of experience from their veteran employees and they take care of all the fresh seafood needs in the area. Sometimes fish is delivered to Don's three times a day and you can take fresh fish home and prepare it your way or you can also pick up such specialty's like fried shrimp and other golden seafood goodies to dine in or carry out. As well as smoked fish, cocktail shrimp and homemade salads to accompany them. They will always have specials going on as well for all the different seasons. On my first visit me and a buddy kept it real simple and we went with a pound of fried shrimp and some fried Lake Perch which was in season and from the Great Lakes region.

Fried Shrimp from Don's Dock

Great Lakes Yellow Perch

I enjoyed both quite alot and slightly preferred the perch with the breading they use. The fried shrimp were fried hard and had a very crunchy texture because of this. I prefer a light coating on my shrimp but this was one of the better heavy coats I've e had. The sauce was more of a cocktail based than hot sauce but worked well with the shrimps. If I only lived a little closer to Don's I would use them on a regular basis. They had a glass display case with all sorts of fresh fish by the pound to take home along with smoked shrimp, whitefish and other specialties of the Great Lakes region. Its nice to see the multiple generation family run joints take it to the big boys.

Don's fried their shrimp hard

Don's Dock
1220 E. Northwest Hwy.
Des Plaines, IL 60016
(847) 827-1817

Don's Dock on Urbanspoon

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