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Kelly's offers great food in a fun atmosphere
By JOCELYN HOWARD
Published July 28, 2003
The 1950s' antique radios line the walls, and a glamorous mannequin dressed in silvery clothes stares back at customers as soon as they enter Kelly's, a restaurant in downtown Dunedin. It is the kind of place that is a pleasant surprise because of the decor and the bustling atmosphere.
We found Kelly's after 20 minutes of walking around looking for a place to eat lunch. It has been open for 13 years under the same owners, Kathy Carlson and Virgil Kelly.
Kelly's has indoor and outdoor seating; we chose outdoors in the little courtyard. It was very comfortable, with umbrellas shading the tables and flowers scattered around the patio.
The restaurant, with its wide variety of foods on the menu, serves breakfast (all day), lunch and dinner.
The portions are generous, and the prices ranged from $1 to $20. Even though the menu is not separated by gender, when I asked the waitress what the most popular item on the menu was, she said it depended on if you were a girl or boy.
For women, a favorite is the grilled Brie sandwich that includes sauteed spinach, cheese, grilled tomatoes and roasted garlic on sourdough. And tops for the men is the Beef Ridiculous, a lunch dish that includes corned beef, roast beef, lettuce, tomato, horseradish mayonnaise and Swiss cheese on rye bread.
The service was helpful and never left us waiting to ask a question or order, and the food came quickly.
It was wonderful. We got the roast beef hash and egg combination, which was the best hash we had ever tasted, and the special offered that day, eggs benedict with fresh spinach, ham, or turkey, and a hollandaise sauce. Although the eggs benedict were good, they were pricey, almost $8, while on the other hand, my egg combination came with two big pancakes, grits, eggs and the hash, for about $6.
We also got the burger, which had lettuce, tomato, onions and mayonnaise with cheese. Everything was exactly as we had ordered it, even though we asked for some substitutions, and it tasted great. I would also suggest splitting a meal, because what we ordered was more than three people could eat and we ended up taking a lot of it home.
Kelly's is a good choice for a family restaurant, for many reasons. It was full of kids when we went, and high chairs lined the outdoor fence, ready for use. The atmosphere is happy, fun and casual, and there was a good kid's menu featuring such items as french toast and cold cereal for breakfast, and a grilled cheese sandwich, cheese pizza and linguini with red sauce for lunch and dinner.
- Jocelyn Howard, 12, just finished sixth grade at Bay Point Middle in St. Petersburg.