Memphis is a vibrant city that is particularly well known for music. However, it also has a fantastic culinary scene with a vast choice of restaurants serving various cuisines. Regardless of whether you want to enjoy a casual meal with friends at a budget-friendly eatery or enjoy a fine dining experience in a high-end restaurant with an intimate vibe, you will find somewhere to meet your needs. If you are a fan of seafood, then there are some outstanding restaurants that you can try, each of which has something unique to offer in terms of the dishes on its menu or the overall dining experience it provides. The following is an overview of the 20 best seafood restaurants in Memphis, TN.
20. The Majestic Grille
Located on South Main Street in downtown Memphis, this restaurant has seating in booths and high ceilings, says Four Square. The menu is varied with a large selection of fish and seafood cooked in a variety of ways. Some diners have recommended visiting on Friday nights when seafood flatbreads are the special dish of the evening. Others say that the mahi-mahi dish from the entrees is one of the best mahi-mahi dishes you will find anywhere in the city.
19. Hook Seafood & Wings
Located on Elvis Presley Boulevard, Hook Seafood & Wings is a casual diner that has eat-in, take-out, or drive-thru options. They serve predominantly fried southern style food, and some customers claim that they make the best whole catfish in Memphis. Diners say that the seasoning on the food is perfect as there is enough seasoning to create flavorsome food without overpowering the fish or chicken and making it too spicy. Those who have ordered food for delivery say that the food arrives still hot and crispy.
18. Red Lobster
Red Lobster is a chain restaurant with a location on US-64 in Memphis. This restaurant has a lively vibe that is great for eating with a group of friends or family dining. The menu consists of American seafood standards that diners can enjoy in the New England-themed dining room. You will find crowd-pleasing items such as lobster rolls and fried shrimp on the menu. There are also some meat options, including southern fried chicken. Customers have said that the service has added to the great experience of dining in this restaurant.
Regardless of whether you want to devour some calorie-laden fried food or opt for a healthy meal, there is something on the menu for you at Humdingers. Some of the healthy options include various seafood salads, seared tuna, or fresh salmon. There are excellent sides to accompany your meal, and you can choose from a range of sauces to add a different twist of flavor to your chosen dish. This restaurant serves some meat dishes, and meat-eaters can also choose from some healthy options, such as chicken and rice, and add accompaniments and sauces to their meal.
16. Southwind Fish
Known for its small plates and comfort food, Southwind Fish is a casual eatery on Winchester Road. Diners say that the fish is cooked and seasoned perfectly, and there are some tasty side orders to accompany your meal, such as onion rings and slaw. The desserts have also been praised, especially the red velvet cake, so save some room to give a dessert a try. Aside from the amazing food, diners have praised the reasonable prices, the customer service, and the speedy arrival of their food. The casual vibe at this restaurant means it is a great place for family dining or casual meals with friends.
A trendy addition to the seafood culinary scene is Bayou, which is a modern venue in a loft-style space that has seating in a dining room and at the bar. Most of the food on the menu is southern style with a little finesse, although there are dishes that are influenced by international cuisine. Some of the options include seafood pasta dishes, po’boys, gumbo, bacon-wrapped shrimp, and crawfish omelet. Many guests simply pop in to visit the bar and enjoy some snacks. It is also a sports bar that streams live sporting events for diners and drinkers to enjoy during their visit.
14. Bahama Breeze
If you enjoy trying international flavors and want to dine somewhere different from the predominantly southern American style restaurants in Memphis, then Bahama Breeze is an option to consider. Bahama Breeze is a chain-eatery with a laid-back vibe that serves Caribbean inspired dishes. The Caribbean theme continues with the beach-style décor of the restaurant and the tropical cocktails that you can order to accompany your meal. Another reason to visit this restaurant is that they host live music and various events regularly. You will find Bahama Breeze on North Germantown Parkway.
13. D & L’s Catfish Shack
Every southern-style menu features catfish, as this is one of the most traditional southern dishes. However, D & L’s Catfish shack takes it to another level by making fried catfish the star of the show. However, this low-key eatery on Mendenhall Road has plenty of other dishes on offer, including hush puppies and wings. The gospel music playing in the background adds to the experience of dining in this southern-style restaurant. It opens at 11 am seven days a week and is open for both lunch and dinner service. Diners say that the service is excellent and the dishes are reasonably priced.
12. Bonefish Grill
Bonefish Grill is a chain restaurant with a location on North Germantown Parkway. The seafood-centric menu predominantly consists of grilled foods, as this style of cooking is for what it is best known. It is a lively restaurant that gets busy quickly, although it is not so loud that you cannot enjoy a conversation with your dining companions. In addition to the seafood options, this restaurant also serves a variety of cuts of steak that are cooked to order.
11. Ellis Seafood
A great place for a casual bite to eat is Ellis Seafood on Getwell Road. This is an unpretentious counter-serve eatery that is open for both lunch and dinner service. Fish and chips is the most popular option at this establishment, although seafood broils come a close second. Former diners have said that the fried seafood is crispy but not greasy on the outside while remaining juicy and tender on the inside.
10. Mardi Gras Memphis
If you are a fan of Creole and Cajun-style cuisine, then one of the top eateries in the city is Mardi Gras Memphis. This establishment has earned a reputation not only for the delicious flavors but also for serving up generous portions. There is the option to eat in the main dining room or to sit out on the shaded patio outdoors in warmer weather. In addition to the great food, it is also a good place to enjoy a cocktail. To sample the delights of Mardi Gras Memphis, head to North Watkins Street.
9. Joe’s Crab Shack
This informal seafood chain restaurant on Horizon Center Boulevard serves American comfort dishes. The no-frills menu includes options such as stuffed shrimp and crab buckets. Diners have said that it is a great place to hang out with friends for a drink and a bite to eat because of the relaxed vibe. They have also praised the customer service.
8. Krab Kingz Memphis
As the name suggests, crab is the highlight of the menu at this restaurant on Stage Road. The crab is served in numerous ways, although there are plenty of other dishes to try if you are not a fan of crab. This is a no-frills restaurant that serves affordable dishes with classic sides. If you don’t want to order crab on its own, then a great option is one of the seafood platters.
7. Bluff City Crab
The super friendly staff add to the welcoming and laid-back atmosphere at Krab Kingz Memphis. It predominantly serves southern-style seafood, and diners can choose from a variety of sauces to accompany their meals. All the seafood is cooked to perfection, and the sides are delicious. If you want to give this restaurant a try, you will find it on Malco Way in Memphis.
6. Pearl’s Oyster House
Three Best Rated says that Pearl’s Oyster House is one of the best places to feast on oysters in Memphis Tennessee. The oysters are either served raw or cooked in a variety of ways, including flash-fried oysters and oysters Rockefeller. However, there are far more options than just oysters on the menu at this restaurant. There is a huge selection of mouthwatering seafood classics, such as blackened catfish, broiled lobster tail, crab cakes, and po’boys. This restaurant has established an excellent reputation for its friendly service and for having a great vibe.
5. Flying Fish
A casual and affordable restaurant that is well-loved by locals is Flying Fish. Located on South Second Street, this restaurant is known for serving American seafood classics, such as crab cakes, snow crab legs, raw oysters, fish tacos, and jumbo shrimp. Not only does this restaurant serve crowd-pleasing dishes, but it also has a great ambiance and a high level of customer service. There are 11 locations of this restaurant across Tennessee.
4. Soul Fish Cafe
The baskets of seafood are a popular option at this casual eatery on Cooper Street. They also serve a wide range of tasty American seafood dishes, such as various po’boys options, blackened salmon, fish and shrimp platter, oysters, and whole catfish. There are also some meat dishes on the menu, such as pork chops, for the meat-eaters in your party. Therefore, it is a restaurant that has something for everyone.
The menu at Tsunamis is inspired by the cuisine of the Pacific Rim, says The Thrillist. This restaurant has been open for more than 20 years, so it has established an excellent reputation among the locals. There are ever-changing small plates that feature seasonally available seafood and keep visiting this restaurant interesting. Chef Ben Smith’s signature dish is sea bass with black Thai rice, but he is continuously adding new and inventive dishes to his menu. Many of the seafood restaurants in Memphis are casual, southern-style eateries, so Tsunami offers something a little different. It is one of the best options if you want to enjoy a meal for a special occasion.
2. The Gray Canary
Inside the Old Dominick Distillery, The Gray Canary is one of the newest additions to the culinary scene in Memphis, It is run by James Beard Award winners Michael Hudman and Andrew Ticer. Other than the dining, one of the best features of this restaurant is the view of the Mississippi River. The expansive dining room has a raw bar that boasts sustainable oysters and sashimi-style fish. The menu features a range of seafood and vegetarian dishes that are prepared in a wood-fired oven. A further reason to visit this restaurant is the drinks, as there are curated wines and fun cocktails.
1. The Half Shell
According to Best Things Tennessee, The Half Shell has been ranked as the best seafood restaurant in Memphis for 40 consecutive years. It has also won multiple awards from local publication in recognition of the outstanding food it serves. There is an extensive menu featuring salads, sandwiches po’boys, crab cakes, blackened catfish, jumbo fried shrimp, and much more. It is recommended that when eating there for the first time, you give the Half Shell Combo a try as this contains a combination of their best ingredients. All entrée platters include a side order of your choice plus a hot roll. There is a children’s menu at this family-oriented eatery, and weekly specials appear on the menu.
Written by Dana Hanson
Read more posts by Dana Hanson