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Thursday, August 5, 2004

Set your clock by the timelessness of Shakers

Posted on Thu, Aug 5, 2004 at 4:00 AM

Tucked away on Edgewater Drive, the tiny cottage called Shakers has served its tried-and-true breakfast and lunch menu for ages without becoming outdated. It's the kind of place that can be counted on like clockwork, opening every morning at 7 a.m., except for Sunday.

Named for the kitschy collection of salt and pepper shakers that contribute to a modest dŽcor that's part diner and part country kitchen, Shakers holds less than 20 tables and by 11:30 a.m. on a weekday, those tables fill up fast for the lunch crowd.

Now remember, breakfast is only served until 10:30 a.m., and the choices cover the gamut of familiar day-starters. A variety of three-egg omelets are offered, such as the "chef's omelet" ($5.25), filled with mushrooms, ham, bacon, tomato, potato and cheddar cheese. Add a small stack of blueberry pancakes ($2.75) or biscuits and gravy ($2.15), or choose from side items that range from kielbasa ($2.10) to grits (45 cents).

Lunch can be ordered all day, and the options are impressive. There's a full menu of "gourmet" salads, sandwiches, soups and quiches, along with daily specials that can be as fancy as fresh grilled fish (grouper $7.95, salmon $7.50).

The slice of artichoke-broccoli quiche ($6.35) we ordered arrived with a fresh fruit salad. The thick quiche filling was topped with a layer of melted cheddar cheese – heavy but satisfying. The egg salad sandwich ($3.75) was a lighter item, but also amply loaded and dressed with crisp lettuce and juicy tomatoes.

There's not enough space inside Shakers to satisfy their customers' demands, so they do a lot of takeout and catering business. Just go to the website, www.shakerscafe.com, for a listing of that day's specials, plus all the other details needed to place a mother of a takeout order. They handle mega lunch orders like clockwork, too.

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