• Committed to Quality

Our Story

Doing Seafood Better Since 2014

It shouldn’t take a Saturday night reservation or a small fortune to have a delicious seafood meal. But as founder Donna Lee searched for a restaurant offering healthy, quick and affordable seafood in Chicago, she soon realized one simply didn’t exist. So, she built her own. The first Brown Bag Seafood Co. opened at Millennium Park in 2014.

Since then, we’ve stayed committed to that initial vision: providing our guests with quality seafood in an approachable, counter-service format. From our classic Salmon Powerbox to our Crispy Cod Tacos (and everything in between!), we use fresh, sustainably sourced seafood, flown in from around the world every day. Whether you prefer to relax on the patio with a house-made cocktail or grab a healthy meal to go between meetings, you can always count on us. 

And we’re not planning to slow down anytime soon. As long as there are people who - like Donna, six years ago - are lacking a casual seafood joint in their lives, we’ll be looking to introduce ourselves. Always with our amazing food, and always with our blue bandanas and a smile.

Our Mission

Delicious. Friendly. Responsible.

Delicious. Every bite should delight you - and that takes a lot of care and effort. It takes premium ingredients and fresh seafood flown in daily. It takes veggies, soups and sauces made from scratch in every restaurant, every morning. It takes creative, rotating menu items developed by our own passionate crew members. But for all it takes, it gives much more - an unforgettable experience for our guests. 

Friendly. It’s not enough to serve great food. We strive to leave our guests happier than when they came in. We want to know your name and your go-to order, sure, but also your interests and weekend plans. We want you to feel at home in our restaurants, whether you're popping in for a minute to pick up an online order or bringing the whole family for dinner. It's why we've ditched the traditional white tablecloths and black ties of the seafood experience for blue bandanas and brown t-shirts, traded leather-bound menus for DIY menu cards and scrapped scripted wait staff for our genuine, personable crew. If we're doing our jobs right, we're not only making great food, but making great friends as well. 

Responsible. Just as we strive to leave our guests happier than they were when they came in, the same is true of how we aim to treat the environment around us. That’s why we only source seafood approved by the Monterey Bay Seafood Watch, and do our part to prevent species from becoming underpopulated and harmful fishing practices from being employed. It’s also why we rely on wind energy to power our restaurants, create menu items that help achieve near-zero food waste, invest in energy-efficient kitchen equipment and use fully biodegradable packaging products (as minimally as possible). Of course, there’s a cost to being responsible. It’s one we’re more than happy to bear.