SALUTE TO PORK
By Pete Temple, Express Sports/Ag Editor
The tenderloin served at Kelly’s Country Oven was a finalist in the 10th annual Best Breaded Pork Tenderloin Contest, conducted by the Iowa Pork Producers Association (IPPA).
There were 993 nominations submitted for the contest. Sixty-five restaurants received the required three or more nominations. Initial judging was done by producer/members of the IPPA.
Five finalists were selected, including Kelly’s. Final judging was completed in early October by members of the IPPA Restaurant and Food Service Committee.
Breitbach’s Country Dining in Balltown was the winner, receiving $500 and a plaque. Vinny’s BBQ in Dakota City was second.
Kelly’s finished fourth, behind The Dog House in Pella and ahead of Antler’s Pub & Grill in Clare.
“It was amazing,” Kelly said. “It’s just an honor even to be nominated, and to be selected in the top five; we were very happy.”
Kelly said the meat for the tenderloins comes from Fareway. Kelly’s tenderizes it and adds its own seasonings.
“We sell a lot of them,” she said. “You can get them grilled or deep fried.”
The contest recognizes Iowa dining establishments that support the swine industry by putting pork on their menu. All restaurants, cafes and taverns that serve breaded pork tenderloin sandwiches can be nominated for the award each year. Previous contest winners are eligible, but are prohibited from winning two consecutive years.
The IPPA judged the tenderloins based on taste, appearance and physical characteristics.