For all those that don’t know, I’m a self proclaimed foodie. I literally LOVE to try new restaurants and food is truly the way to my heart. Truth be told, it crosses my mind all the time to share new restaurants I visit or recipes we try, but I’m always so excited to eat that I forget to take pictures throughout the process and we all know that just won’t work for a blog post. Thanks to my girls, I remembered to snap a few pictures while trying a new restaurant this past weekend. We went to Seafood by Crushed Velvet in Belleville, IL, approximately 30 minutes away from St. Louis. I literally couldn’t wait to get home to write a formal review about this restaurant!
Restaurant Review: Seafood by Crushed Velvet
As an avid seafood lover, I had heard of Seafood by Crushed Velvet as soon as it opened. However, I hadn’t tried it because I really didn’t want to take that long drive, but when I saw they were participating in Black Restaurant Week I knew the powers that be were telling me to go. My girls and I piled in the car and took what felt like a mini road trip over to Belleville.
The restaurant is located on Main street in what looked to be a downtown like area. It was surrounded by other restaurants, shops, and bars. In fact, there was remnants of a St. Patrick’s Day Parade that we must have just missed. The restaurant itself lacks clear/large signage: we probably would have walked right past it if we hadn’t seen the chalkboard displaying the menu.
Upon entry, my first thought was “wait, are you sure this is it?” Other than the wonderful smell of seafood, I couldn’t even tell I was in a restaurant. Truthfully, I was immediately turned off by the aesthetic of Seafood by Crushed Velvet, but since we’d driven so far I was not about to turn back around. We were promptly seated by a very polite waiter in a back room that at first was dimly lit and a bit cold. We were all a bit dismayed, but the waiter went to work immediately to improve our experience. He turned up the heat, somehow got more lights working, and even obtained a bluetooth speaker for us to listen to music of our choice. Our waiter was very knowledgeable about the menu, including the specials that were not listed. He brought our food fairly quickly and was extremely attentive to all of our needs. He kept our glasses full and was certain to be sure we didn’t need anything. The service was exemplary, which was a welcomed surprised after reading a few reviews to the contrary.
Now let’s jump into what most feel is most important….The Food. Let me tell y’all, this was hands down the best seafood I have ever had from a restaurant! I selected the “under the sea” platter, composed of two crab clusters, a lobster tail, 6 large shrimp, sausage, corn, potatoes, AND a boiled egg. The food was perfectly seasoned and accompanied by what had to have been butter churned by angels drizzled on top. I substituted the boiled egg for extra corn (for no extra charge). The lobster tail basically melted in my mouth and the corn was cooked to perfection. Everything was so delicious, it’s almost to do it just with simply words. I’ve seriously thought about this food everyday since I had it.
Seafood by Crushed Velvet is the textbook definition of why you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. Between the reviews criticizing the service and the restaurants appearance, my expectations were not high. However, they truly turned a skeptic into a fan with their awesome service and exceptional cuisine! I don’t even think I mind that it’s so far away, but I wouldn’t be complaining if she opened a location in St. Louis. I will definitely be visiting Seafood by Crushed Velvet again and I highly recommend everyone that lives in or visits St. Louis to add it to your itinerary.
Have you ever been to Seafood by Crushed Velvet? Do you have a similar restaurant in your town? If so, drop it below as I’m always down to try a new seafood spot!