Longevity is not something you find too often in Lower Greenville restaurants, where “flash in the pan” is much more common. But Daddy Jack’s Lobster and Chowder House had it. Opened in 1993 by East Dallas restaurateurs Jack Chaplin, Cary Ray and Neil Connell, the business lasted a staggering 24 years before it quietly closed in May. The business was built on passion — Chaplin wanted to capture the fresh seafood flavors he loved from New England, which were more unusual to find in Texas at the time. The restaurant was no muss, with simple red-checkered tablecloths and a rich menu of seafood staples.
“I say we’re providing the neighborhood a service: love and lobster,” Ray told the Advocate in 2010.
When neighboring business The Crown and the Harp, owned by the same proprietors, announced its plans to close, it was clear Daddy Jack’s wouldn’t be too far behind. Their closures open up prime real estate at 1916 and 1914 Greenville, which as of press time had not yet been filled. But for those missing the fresh fishy taste of Daddy Jack’s, here is the restaurant’s original lobster fra diavlo, first published in the Advocate in June 1998.
Lobster fra diavlo (serves two)
1 cooked lobster (tail split, claws cracked)
10 peeled shrimp
4 cups linguini
3 cups marinara sauce
4 tablespoons garlic butter
2 tablespoons red pepper flakes
3 ounces white wine
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
Place 1 tablespoon of garlic butter, chopped garlic and red pepper flakes in sauté pan.
Cook until garlic is slightly browned.
Add all seafood and cook for two minutes.
Add marinara sauce, white wine and remaining garlic butter.
Cook until clams and mussels open, and sauce is very hot.
Serve over linguini and garnish with chopped green onions or chopped parsley.
Click to sign up for the Advocate's weekly news digest and be the first to know what’s happening in Lakewood/East Dallas.