Bahama Bob's Rumstyles

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Rumstylin' at Kelly's Caribbean Bar-Grill & Brewery

     Kelly's Caribbean Bar-Grill & Brewery opened in 1991 when "Top Gun" actress Kelly McGillis and then husband Fred Tillman purchased the property.     The building, Pan-Am's ticket office, originally located where the "Pier House" is today, but it was moved to it's present location in the late 1920's.    It later became a trading post and during the 1980's a very small restaurant and piano bar called the "Pigeon Patio".     Located at the Corner of Whitehead and Caroline Streets, Kelly's today is one of most significant historic buildings here in Key West.    

     Kelly's is well known as being the birthplace of Juan Trippe's Pan American World Airways.     Having made his first airmail service flight from Key West to Havana on October 19, 1927.     The rest of the story is history.     Historic photographs cover the walls of the "Crash Bar" giving the visitors a feeling for what has gone before.    Even the bar tells volumes about the place with it's Sikorsky Seaplane crashing through the roof and the aluminum wing bar top.     What a perfect place to serve the "Pan-Am Panic" their signature frozen cocktail.

     The huge trees that form the canopy over the main garden, provide a dining experience second to none.     As you walk down to the cobble stone patio and are seated you can really feel the Caribbean atmosphere take you far away from the ordinary.     The chefs today are still dishing up some of the finest meals available in Key West.     Indoor dining is also available along with room for the largest of parties and wedding receptions.

     This place never seems to stop providing services that brings both locals and tourist to the door.     One of the best "happy hours" in Key West serving wings that are hard to beat any where along with the micro brew  ales all created on the property by their own brew master from the finest of malted barley, hops, water, and yeast all combined and blended into three tasty treats: "Havana Red, Key West Golden, and Southern Clipper Wheat".      In addition to the micro brews there is a full service bar that serves shill and frozen cocktails.

     Long before moving to Key West, my wife and I used to fly down here and our long time favorite place to have dinner was of course Kelly's Caribbean.     One Friday evening we flew from Daytona after the day at the race track was over and proceeded down to Key West to have dinner, Daytona was getting old.     We boarded our plane along with one of my friends and proceeded to Key West had dinner and returned to Daytona.     The dinner was spectacular and the flight was a great break in the action from the Daytona 500 week.     Today we only have to jump on the scooter and we are there, but it is still one of my favorites.    ;o)