An Entertaining & Informative Vintage Automobile Internet Magazine

*Updated* Fred And Kelly’s Barbecue – Counter, Booth and Car Service

kf1

One glance while driving down the road at this distinctive-looking restaurant back in its time, would surely tempt oneself to pull in and get something to eat or drink. Fred and Kelly’s Barbecue had an oval shape, and the addition of the imaginative neon signage must have really helped to pull in customers off the road.

  •                    kf2                       kf3

The eatery may have been located in the Salt Lake City, Utah area. After a search, an interesting article was found in the July 15, 1942 Desert News, a newspaper published in the city. It told of the roadside establishment being robbed of two hundred and four dollars the previous evening. Photo via Carros Antigos. Many more neon signs here.

*Update* Thanks to readers Hugh N. Coltharp and Terry Roddick we now know the location was at 1084 S. State Street in Salt Lake City. Terry sent a link in his comment to the present day street view.

27 responses to “*Updated* Fred And Kelly’s Barbecue – Counter, Booth and Car Service

  1. Fred and Kelly’s was located on State Street, the main north-south highway through Salt Lake City. It was a gathering place for local hot rodder’s, teenagers, myself included. If the building could talk, what stories it could tell! . the structure is now a Chinese café.

    • General Motors body shell that was shared by several of their brands, so could be Buick, Pontiac, Olds etc

      • Hard to see but the front end looks more like Graham or LaSalle. Grille, from the side rear looks like it’s straight up and down with grille bars curving around.
        But, then, what do I know.

  2. The building was remodelled and reconfigured first as a Mexican restaurant in the 70’s and then to it’s configuration as a Chinese restaurant . The oval windows still exist on the south side of the building.

  3. the car on the left is a 1937 pontiac. irt’s the base l;ine model as it has only one tail light. the same is true for the next car as it is a 1937 chevrolet. also a standard model as it has a single tail lamp.

  4. In the GOODOLD Cruisin State Street days of the ’60s & ’70s F&K had a car service that im guessing served about 20 cars. Typ. cruise was to go through Don Carlos Drive-In on 900 So. State and then through F&K Drive-In. If you were lucky you found a hole to park your machine and ordered an order of french fries which was brought out to you by cool looking chicks.

    AH the good old days!

  5. If I can be of any help, I know the entire story of Fred &Kelly’s. My father was “Kelly”, He died in june of 1942 in a plane crash in Idaho. Mom bought out his business partner Fred “Huth” and ran it from 1943 until she retired around1970 or there about. I, myself, worked there from age 14 until I was 24. Mom was hard for me to work for and I lacked interest in cafe work,
    and she was what you might call a micro manager, so I joined the S.L.C.P.D. in 1962. That burger you ate, I probably cooked. The address was 1084 so. State, Phone # was 4-8787, then EMpire 4-8787 later it was DA-23444.. I worked there off and on until mid June of 1966 , but not after. I retired from the force in 1993, September with 32 years of service on the force.

    After It, Fred & Kelly’s closed it became the “Ponderosa” which lasted only a year of two,then it sat for a while until it became one of Jhonny Quongs “Hawaiian”, He did a lot of remodeling and ran it for several years, I am not sure what went wrong but Mom took it back and again it sat for a while. ( I’m not sure if was a Mexican cafe before or after the JonnyQuong”, Hawaiian” , after that it sat while Mom’s new husband, Leo did some remodeling and put that cover over the front doors. I should add that the old , round front building was remodeled greatly in the fall of 1953, to the present shape it is now. Some of the old building was retained. The south wall from the where the front began to curve back (west) to beyond what was the old back wall and then may be 22 feet more. A new back wall was put in and the new east side was about half of the old wall. The cinder block part was new,but the rest was the old original wall. There was one other building in Salt Lake City that was exactly the same as the” Fred & Kelly’s ” building. I don’t know what it was originally, but it was a dry cleaners When I first saw it. It was located on the north side of 4th south midway between State St and 2nd east, right across the street from the City &County building. The curved part was on the rear of the building. and if you didn’t go around the building, to the back, you didn’t see the curved part.
    The building was sold to a Chinese man who at the time was actually in China. He died before the sale
    was finalized so again the building sat until another Chinese family purchased it, and it was called “The Golden Phoenix” I think that was in 1995 or 1996.
    Mom died in 2004 her husband Leo died in 2008, if I recall correctly. They were living in Arizona when they passed.

    The first cafe called Fred & Kelly’s, was the one in S. l. C. The lot was purchased for around $3700. I was told, in late 1937 or 1938 i. The next on was in Pocatello, Id. at 202 south 5th street, the site of” Sawyers bar-b-que” which was torn down and replaced by the new “FRED & KELLY’S Cafe in 1939 or early 1940. Some years later in Idaho Falls Fred (Huth) opened another cafe and bar also called Fred And Kelly’s, but it was after Dads death and after the end of the partnership had ceased to between Fred and Kelly. I think mom ran the cafe in Salt Lake, for between 25 and 30 years. before she wanted to retire, She married Leo Seifert,
    moved to a few places back East and finally started Selling Realestate in Arizona until she passed.

    There was one other placed called FRED AND KELLY’S It was Never part of our family. It was on State street in Murray, some where near the freeway entrance, across from the mall. It was call Fred and Kelly’s because some guy had remembered it fondly, and found that the business license and every thing else had expired and there for the name was not protected and was available to any one who could pay the fee’s to start up a business. There are many stories I can remember and a lot of people I knew from working there I still wonder about, if they are still with us or not. There were some very pretty car hops and waitress’s If you have any specific questions send me an email and if I know I’ll send you the answer. I am now living in Boise, Id and am well and happy. I hope you find all this interesting.

    • Thanks Roger, I was a car-hop plus cook and fountain girl, I worked there twice, before I was married and after I had a baby boy in 1962. Just looking for pictures and info I can put into my life story. Thanks for your help. Carolyn Held Lamb

    • I grew up in SLC and now live in Boise too. Reminds me of the old days of SLC. I loved Fred and Kellys. My favorite was the Fish & Chips, I’ve never had better. The fish had the perfect crunchy batter, best fries also. Any chance you retained any of the recipes? If so you should publish a recipe book.

    • I was looking through items that my mom saved from her childhood and ran across a menu from Fred and Kelly’s in SLC. She passed by there in June 1941 and I have the menu. In wondering why she kept it I googled the restaurant and happened upon this site. It sounds like it was the happening spot. It must have made an impression on my mom since she kept the menu from Fred and Kelly’s. I was thinking I need to make a road trip to see what it was all about and I’m disappointed to see it’s now closed.

      Roger Kinnersley, are you interested in the menu?

  6. I used to eat a hamburger at Fred and Kelly’s drive-in once or twice a week in the late 50’s, early 60’s. I still crave the hamburgers there and have never been able to re-create it’s deliciousness. As I recall, the meat patty was topped with a long slice of dill pickle, some shredded lettuce and mayonnaise, nothing more. Wonderful burger.

  7. I have a kids menu from the early 50’s
    Fred& Kelly’s Café
    Hiway 91-30-191
    202 South Fifth Avenue
    Pocatello, Idaho
    Could this be the same Fred and Kelly????

    • Sorry for the delay. The answer is YES , the same two guys Fred Huth and Kelly Kinnersley started both, the one in slc first and The one in Pocatello next, in about 1940 or so. I remember them digging the hole because I fell in it and Dad had to pull me out. Then he died in a plane crash and we, Mom me ,ad my sister moved to Slc . The pardnership was desolved and the rest is history.

  8. I was looking through items that my mom saved from her childhood and ran across a menu from Fred and Kelly’s in SLC. She passed by there in June 1941 and I have the menu. In wondering why she kept it I googled the restaurant and happened upon this site. It sounds like it was the happening spot. It must have made an impression on my mom since she kept the menu from Fred and Kelly’s. I was thinking I need to make a road trip to see what it was all about and I’m disappointed to see it’s now closed.

    Roger Kinnersley, are you interested in the menu?

    • No , not really. It’s not the same place it was. Three or four cafe’s have been there since it was Fred an Kelly’s While I worked there and know the history I have only fond memories and some regrets but then was then and now is now. But thanks for the offer. .Roger K.

  9. Pocatello, Idaho also had a Fred and Kelly’s Drive Inn. It had the Best BBQ Chicken Sandwiches and French Fries…..Ever! As I remember…..it looked a lot like this. Oh, the Good Old Days!

  10. My father was from Salt Lake City, and I ran across a great picture of his brother, Calvin, who died probably not long after this photo was taken, and the woman who either was, or shortly after became his wife. I’m guessing they worked there as he is wearing an apron, and she is wearing what looks like a Majorette’s uniform, and on the hat it says “Fred and Kelly’s”. I have the photo but don’t know how to post it!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *