The sixties were busy years for Joe and Suzanne Lee. Army, marriage, starting a family and many entrepreneurial adventures.  Joe Lee's history in the seafood business begins in the early 1970s when Joe Lee purchased and shrimped with a small boat called the "Quajay" . A tow boat named "Jerry" was acquired and Joe ran the boat on the Texas and Louisiana waterways. He sold the boats after a few years and started an oil company that had several gasoline transport trucks delivering product all over Texas. During this period he also owned and operated a seafood packing processing plant with a small store front in Galveston Texas called Capt. Sidneys Seafood. Sidneys product line consisted of stuffed crabs, gumbo and other seafood items that were sold to grocery stores and restaurants.

In 1978 Joe Lee purchased a piece of land located at 102 Kipp Street, on the Clear Creek channel at the mouth of Galveston Bay in Kemah Texas. The property was located right next door to the historic Jimmie Walkers Restaurant at the end of Kipp street where the Chart House Restaurant is located today on the Kemah Boardwalk.

The building on the property was a small one story metal building that was formerly a beer joint, fuel dock and a casino in a previous colorful period in Kemah's history. He raised this building up and enclosed the bottom and opened "Joe Lee's Down on the Creek". The restaurant was located upstairs; downstairs was a fuel dock, grocery store and beer joint. He purchased two more shrimp boats, "Little Rabbit" and "Jack Rabbit". The boats supplied seafood to the restaurant and also would tie up at the fuel dock in the evenings selling fresh shrimp off the boats to locals & tourist.  In addition to owning & operating Joe Lee's Down on the Creek, Joe Lee also served as councilman and mayor of Clear Lake Shores, Texas for ten years.

In August of 1983 Hurricane Alicia destroyed the Fuel dock, grocery store & beer joint. There was no damage to the upstairs restaurant. Joe Lee rebuilt the down stairs and at this point it became a full blown restaurant. The fuel dock continued to operate out of a small office on one end of the dock but the beer joint & grocery store became a part of the past. The restaurant continued to operate and grow until Hurricane Jerry hit in 1989.

In October of 1989 Hurricane Jerry destroyed the downstairs and the fuel dock became part of the past. The restaurant re-opened in February 1990, and continued to grow and become know as one of the best seafood restaurants on the Gulf Coast.

Today's "Joe Lee's Seafood Kitchen" located at 1108 Marina Bay Drive, Kemah, Texas was opened early in 1996 and began to operate, serving the same really good food Joe Lee's has come to be known for, with a different concept featuring counter service as opposed to having a full wait staff.

Joe Lee was in the process of selling the original property on Kipp Street to Landry's Corp. when he unexpectedly passed away in November of 1996. The sale was completed by the family and finalized early 1997. Today his family, wife Suzanne Lee, sons Joe Lee Jr. and Mike Lee continue to own and operate Joe Lee's Seafood Kitchen carrying on his vision into the future.

ORDERS TO GO: (281) 535-0148
1108 Marina Bay Dr. (FM 2094) - Clear Lake Shores, TX 77565
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