Melissa Kelly’s grandfather used to send her deep into the neighbors’ backyards to pick dandelions.
“If they were small he’d make a salad, if they were big he’d make ravioli filling, ” says the James Beard award-winning chef. It was Kelly’s grandfather – Primo – who taught her the “seasonal to the moment” cooking that has become her signature. And after whom she named her restaurants.
At Primo Orlando, Italian-inspired cuisine embraces Florida’s bounty. Peppers, tomatoes, eggplant. Exotic citrus like calamansi and Persian limes. Radicchio, arugula, kabocha squash. All of it and more grows in the restaurant’s spacious garden. And all of it shapes the daily menu.
“If something’s coming out of the garden today it’s on the menu today,” says Chef Kelly.
Which means that like Primo and his dandelions, each morning matches freshness and creativity.