Photo by Gerri Fernandez

Commercial fisherman Lawrence Schweig always dreamed of working for himself. So after a long and successful career, he ventured on his own and opened a tiny storefront. Even before it became the restaurant we know today, the fishery was known for harvesting the best fish in Lake Michigan, and providing fresh and smoked fish to hotels and restaurants across the city. 

Lawrence’s Fish and Shrimp has been a Chicago staple for over seventy years, but especially for the South Side neighborhoods immediately adjacent to this traditional fishery, such as Bridgeport, Canaryville, East Pilsen and Chinatown.

As the demand for Lawrence’s fish grew over the years, four new items were added to the menu: fried shrimp, perch, frog legs, and chicken. Soon, the small establishment would open its doors 24/7—but it wasn’t until the 1980s that the small establishment expanded to open more locations.

Today, the original location continues to sit at the edge of the South Branch of the Chicago River, providing a soothing view of the water. Whether you are in for a quick bite or a late night basket of fried shrimp, Lawrence’s Fish and Shrimp is the way to go. 

This is your sign to stop by and enjoy the Canal Street patio, a cold beer, and some out-of-this-world fried seafood and chicken.

Join the Conversation


  1. I love Lawrence’s Fish and Shrimp I been eating there for over 40 years and I love it their Shrimp and oysters are the bomb so go there and then they are good all theirs food’s are good ?

  2. I was born and raised in the Bridgeport neighborhood and was introduced to Lawrence Fisheries as a teenager. I am now in my 70’s and live on the northside but I still go to Lawrence. I could eat a pound of their breaded shrimp ?by myself. I requested my son take me there for Mother’s day. Worth the trip ?! ? YUM

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