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Lunch Bunch navigate varied menu at Burrell Inn

Ahoy maties, the Burrell Inn beckons to buccaneers with hearty appetites.

When the Lunch Bunch visited this inn recently, we discovered a busy dining area with patrons wolfing down large-sized lunch selections.

For those who want to eat on the run, Burrell Inn features an express takeout sandwich storefront. The restaurant is at the back of the building along Leechburg Road. The dining room is past the bar area.

The menu boasts that Burrell Inn has been a Lower Burrell tradition for more than 50 years. We see why. The menu offers a nice variety of sandwiches and hoagies and almost two dozen appetizers.

Of those appetizers, we were most intrigued by Frips ($2.25 or $2.50 with seasoning for small or $3 and $3.25 for large) wafer-thin, homemade potato chips fried to a crisp. Be warned, these yummies are addictive.

We felt compelled to sample Reuben Bites ($3.50) bites of corned beef, sauerkraut and cheese rolled into a ball, breaded and fried. Interesting.

We also settled on a Munchie Platter ($5.75; $6.75 if you build your own) that featured four fried goodies. We included the Reuben Bites as a build-our-own platter then, for good measure, added beer-battered onion rings, which were superb, soft and gooey provolone wedges, and delightful breaded Cheddar cauliflower bites.

The Beer Battered Fish Sandwich, a featured special on Fridays, is one whale of a sandwich. We wisely ordered half of it to be boxed for takeout, and we struggled to finish the half we were served. The reputation of this sandwich precedes it, because at least one diner at every table indulged in fish.

Never realizing the Burrell Inn prepared food for the likes of Paul Bunyan, our salad lover foolishly ordered a large Buffalo Chicken Salad ($6.95). What she received was a humongous bowl filled with enough salad for a family of six, but after she removed the 1 1/2 pounds of homemade french fries, the salad became a manageable luncheon meal. The offering includes iceberg lettuce, hard-cooked egg, lots of cubed chicken breast in a nice, spicy Buffalo hot sauce, shredded cheese, cucumbers, a few green pepper rings, sweet onion rings, a bit of tomato and, believe it or not, sliced radishes. This is the first time radishes were included in a salad at area restaurants. We like that. This is a plentiful salad, and if you want it to be slightly more healthful, ask them to hold the fries, because they make up the bulk of the salad, or order the small ($5.75).

Another hefty choice was the Big Chick Burger ($4.80), a half-pound of ground beef with grilled onion and a gooey slice of hot pepper cheese, topped with a house dressing. The burger was juicy and tender and came on a fresh bun. The burger was so big the diner ate only half. This is a great meal for a hungry guy, but it might be too much for the average person.

More in keeping with Munchkin capacity were the glasses of Iced Tea (75-cents). Iced tea usually is served in tall glasses, not so here. Curvy 8-ounce glasses were filled to the brim with ice cubes and a shot of freshly brewed iced tea with a wedge of lemon. Yes, the tea was good, but why so little• One long slurp on the straw, and it was all gone. And the 75 cents charge entitled the customer to just one refill. Hiss! Boo! One thirsty piggy had a second refill and paid an extra 75 cents.

On Sundays, there is an extra menu that features Italian specialties.

Compiled by Rebecca Killian, Barbara Daugherty and Sis Reola.

Meals are paid for by the Valley News Dispatch and are unrelated to advertising.

Additional Information:

Burrell Inn

Address: 2734 Leechburg Road, Lower Burrell.

Phone: 724-339-9143.

Hours: 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays; 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. Fridays; 11 a.m. to midnight Saturdays, and noon to 11 p.m. Sundays.

Reservations: No.

Credit cards: All major cards are accepted.

Dress: Casual.

Smoking: Permitted.

Handicapped accessible: Yes.

Prices: Sandwiches, $2 to $6.50; salads, $2.25 to $6.95; sides and appetizers, $2 to $6.75.


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