Tag Archives: gluten free restaurants

Gluten-Free NYC: The Best Restaurant Celiacs Should Never Go To

I’m on week two of globe-trotting (or United States trotting, to be accurate) and am now all up in New York City. Since you can’t always be in the perfect neighborhood for those gluten-free restaurants that rock, I found myself in search of a restaurant that simply fit the bill of “easy to meet someone whilst in between appointments.” That restaurant happened to be Stuzzi, in the Flatiron District.

I know, I know, Italian restaurants are basically the worst options for celiacs. However, I was standing outside looking at their amazing antipasto menu and thought I could totally make it work. But what happened was even more amazing, and kind of tragic. Continue reading

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Gluten-Free Austin: Frank, Guero’s & The Barley Swine

Wow, people in Austin love beer. When I used to live in Austin I also loved beer. In fact I would say I probably drank more beer in Austin, than in any other city in America. But now that I’m gluten-free, beer is a challenge. Unless you’re in Austin, where gluten-free beer kind of hangs out wherever you wander. In fact, every restaurant I dined in offers a gluten-free beer option. For seriouslys. Which just makes me realize that Austin, Texas has a secret beer agenda and will do everything in the city’s power to make sure people drink beer, at all times. It’s just the way Austin is. So I had to give in, it’s totally not my fault.

I’ve talked about Frank before, because the first time I went there post-diagnosis they already had gf hot dog buns and beer. This is my brother and sister-in-law’s restaurant, but they did this before I was even diagnosed. But now? Now it’s ON. Because this is the menu: Continue reading

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Gluten-Free Santa Barbara: La Super-Rica, Simply Pies & More Fanciness

If you’re posh and planning a trip to Santa Barbara, and also happen to be a celiac you are in massive luck. I just spent the weekend in beautiful Santa Barbara, not on a luxury vacation but visiting my mother-in-law. It’s one of a handful of trips I’ve made to SB since being diagnosed, and luckily, my MIL has done a lot of g-free research for me around Goleta and SB. So before I even arrived I was ahead of the game. Which is probably why Woody’s (my husband’s favorite BBQ restaurant in the whole world) was probably not the first place our family should have gone out to eat, but we did.

Like a lot of barbecue sauce, Woody’s has soy sauce as an ingredient. We know because they picked up the bucket and checked. That’s right, a bucket. My husband’s favorite barbecue comes from a bucket. So I went for the celiac special — a burger without a bun — and the rest of my family enjoyed a gluten-filled meal. Oh yeah, and this:

Which is why I included Woody’s in this round-up. Because that place is a blast, even if you totally can’t eat there. Which you can’t. So don’t go.

One place you will want to frequent, however, is Simply Pies. Almost every one of their pie options is also made gluten-free and honestly, it’s the most amazing pie crust I’ve ever tasted. My MIL brought me a lemon pie a few months ago, and I enjoyed this caramelized onion and mushroom quiche on this trip. That pie crust is truly inspiring. Look it: Continue reading

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Sushi, I’m Not Scared of You Anymore

I’m still all abuzz with my newfound freedom, so please excuse me if I sound disproportionately excited about eating fish and rice. Which, I will. You see soy sauce has gluten in it, which is just so crazy. I don’t understand these fermented things one little bit. This means Chinese food and Japanese food have been off my safe list, and Thai comes in a close second because honestly, I don’t know what’s going on there. (Give me a break, I grew up on a farm . . . in Oklahoma.) While I bust out the wheat-free tamari when I’m at home, I never feel safe waltzing into a restaurant and saying, “Garcon, please bring me your most fanciest gluten-free delights from Asia!” Until now.

Whooo-hoooo Katsu-Ya! I just had the most amazing experience at your strip mall sushi joint in Studio City. That’s right, a strip mall. In the valley. Which is apparently where magic happens. Continue reading

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Gluten-Free Palm Springs ‘Cuz Hurricane Irene Wrecked My Anniversary

I totally thought I’d be informing all of you lovely people about how to eat gluten-free in New York City today. Alas, climate change had other plans for my husband and I this past week. So we took a detour on our way to the five boroughs and wound up in Palm Springs. This is where I’d like to thank Al Gore for sparing most of NYC, and wish my friends without power the best of luck in getting ConEd out and up in your business.

In spite of the massive disappointment of not getting to enjoy our wedding anniversary tradition of lunch at Gramercy Tavern, and seeing loads of great friends, our alternate plans for the weekend in the PS turned out to be AWESOME. And delightfully, g-free. Right on, Palm Springs. Right. On. Continue reading

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Gluten-Free Los Angeles: Farmer’s Market & The Grove (UPDATE)

Coming from a climate that actually has seasons, I’ve always been a fan of the outdoor dining and shopping scene in L.A. Probably too much so, as having a glass of wine with lunch in such close proximity to Anthropologie always ends badly. But fabulously, wardrobe-wise. At least until all that embroidery disappears because you really hate washing clothes by hand.

Basically, I spend too much time at The Grove at the Farmer’s Market, and after I was diagnosed I was a little freaked out by any of my old haunts that involved food. But it turns out, there are a lot of awesome g-free options right there in the original Farmer’s Market of L.A. Whoo-hooo!  Follow me, I’ll show you how to get your gluten-free eat on in many ridiculous ways. Continue reading

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Gluten-Free Los Angeles: Chain Vs. High-Falutin’

We Moved!

Hi lovers, likers, and tolerate-ors of GIMB. So we moved last week, and in addition to the packing, unpacking, sorting, cleaning, discovering of old clothes that are suddenly new again, I’ve been sans Internet. But I’m back! And I’ve been eating.

The thing is, when you move, is that you wind up dining out a lot. Which is not so awesome for those of us with the celiac. Especially at lunchtime when slices and sandwiches are staring you in the face. Needless to say I had a lot of tacos last week, but I also was lucky enough to hit a couple of stellar joints, both of which served me up gluten-free dinners to die for. Or rather, to totally not die for, as they were gluten-free and will not slowly give me small intestine cancer. Woot! Which made me stop and consider (again) my love of the fancy restaurants, and avoidance of the chain.

I hit both, and here’s what happened, and how they compared. Continue reading

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What Just Happened?

Sing it, Senor

So we’re moving to a new house this weekend, which naturally means I’ve been spending some time at IKEA. Today after my daughter and I grabbed some storage baskets and lighting fixtures at the pride of Sweden, I was starving. Our options at this fab shopping center in beautiful downtown Burbank included California Pizza Kitchen and Chevy’s Fresh Mex. Clearly the pizza was not going to cut it, so we hightailed it to the Fresh Mex of the West.

This is where I admit that I’m becoming more fond of dining at chains, instead of my usual fancy farm-to-tables. Because those people know how to take care of a crazy diner with special needs. What happened next should go down in the celiac hall of fame. Which I will start, after posting this, moving, and getting that book proposal finished.

As we got comfortable with our tortilla chips, salsa and giant water cups, I asked the server if they had a gluten-free menu. She wasn’t really sure what the heck I was talking about, and brought me the tequila menu. Hey, tequila is gluten-free. After I admitted to myself I couldn’t only have tequila for lunch, she went to talk to someone and obviously learned the seriousness of my request. That lady came back and swatted a chip out of my mouth, scooped up the basket before we could shove more in our mouths, yelling, “You can’t eat these.” That’s when I knew Chevy’s wasn’t messing around about the gluten-free. Right after the great chip save, the manager came over and pulled up a chair. That’s right, he wanted to be relaxed as he spent an insane amount of time walking me through the menu, and quite frankly, the whole philosophy of Chevy’s.

He then explained to me that they have a separate frying basket for gluten-free chips, and they were heating the oil right now for me. My own personal chips without the taint of delicious flauta drippings. (Which, by the way, I totally should have thought about!!!) I asked him what I could have on the menu, and he was kind enough to go over all of the options, and inform me that the fajita marinade contained soy sauce. There are four star restaurants I’ve been to where they don’t get the soy sauce thing. He also told me, not to worry because they could substitute corn tortillas on any dish, and leave out the marinade if fajitas were what I was craving that day. He basically told me to order what I wanted, and they’d make it gf. Chevy’s in Burbank, where have you been all my life?

It gets better. Continue reading

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Gluten-Free Austin: Celiac Capital of the World

I’ve only been back from Austin, Texas for a few hours and already I miss the ease of dining as I struggle to figure out where in the world to grab take-out that will appeal to my picky daughter and my celiac self. Because basically, my mind was blown this week as I chowed down in the best city in Texas (and quite frankly, a five state radius).  Here’s what happened in the first 36 hours I was there.

I went to three restaurants in a row that handed me a gluten-free menu. Three! Three gluten-free menus — in a freaking row! They know how to treat a girl who can’t hang with wheat. Also, check out that grocery store aisle above in Central Market. So much g-free business I had to walk away without buying anything so as not to buy EVERYTHING. Whole Foods, you need to take a lesson from the greatest grocery store of all time. Alternately, Central Market — please come to California. You know you want to, especially in the summers.

So here’s where I dined, and you should too if you’re looking for a good gf time in the live music capital of the world. Continue reading

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On Falling Off the Wagon

Today I declared to my husband, “I’m about to fall off the wagon.” You see, we have reservations at this über hot restaurant in LA, and one of the chefs is related to a friend of my husband’s. Which means, amuse bouche and ridiculous desserts will be the name of the game. This is AWESOME. Unless you have celiac disease and can’t eat gluten. It’s amazing how gluten can seep into every damn thing. And when your villi look like someone took a chainsaw to the poor little things, you have to repair that shit before you can say, “Oh, maybe just this once.*”

So this is how my husband responded (picture soulful look in his eye): “I know you don’t remember how sick you were. But you were very, very, ill, and for a long time. You were miserable and it affected your entire life. It affected my life, it affected the kids.” (Dramatic pause) “It even affected the dog.”

It’s been about a few months since I did this to my cabinet: Continue reading

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