Amalia “Molly” Kelley may be a familiar face to anyone who’s bought a sandwich or picked up coffee and a bacon-egg-and-cheese breakfast order at Wilton’s Diamond Deli. After 14 years working for other deli owners–five of them at Diamond–Kelley has made her dream come true: today is the first day her own shop, Molly’s Deli, is officially open at 673 Danbury Rd., next to Town and Country Nursery.
Kelley had a sort of soft open yesterday, to get everything rolling. Customers stopped in at lunchtime to order sandwiches, some recognizing her from her behind-the-counter stints elsewhere. “Hi honey!” she sings out, greeting a familiar customer warmly, as her employees chop fresh vegetable and man the grill.
Clearly she’s not only in her element, she’s enjoying everything about it.
“Everybody in this town knows me as Molly. I used to tell the customers at Diamond Deli, ‘Whenever you see a sign for Molly’s Deli, that’s going to be me!’ I’ve had this dream for 14 years. It feels good,” she says, and then adds, “and nervous and exciting.”
She’s still waiting for her big menu sign that will be installed behind the counter above the grill. But she has totally renovated the inside of the space that used to be occupied by The Burrito Shack, refinishing the floors, bringing in new food service equipment and brightening it up with a fresh coat of white paint. “We’re trying to make everything come together,” she explains.
But the important things are in, including the grill, oven, fryer and steam table. Molly says all the usual deli fare will be available, from soups to sandwiches, fresh salads, hot lunch specials, chicken cutlets, hamburgers and hot dogs, and vegetarian and gluten free options as well. She hopes to be able to eventually offer some organic choices too, and is really looking forward to having burritos and homemade salsa on the menu.
It’s clear she’s excited about the prospect of making a go of things and putting her name behind it.
“Everything is really good, we’ve got Boar’s Head–other places want to go cheaper, but we want to be good. And make sure you put Molly in there. Everybody knows Molly!” she says, laughing.