Oh man, you guys, I have had a gluten-free experience of epic proportions. As in, I kind of changed the world. Or rather, ummm, one restaurant in Los Angeles. Sure I didn’t do it on purpose and was more the result of a temper tantrum than a thoughtful discussion on the advantages of eating whole foods, but still.
You may remember how excited I got when I learned how to enjoy gluten-free sushi again at Katsuya in Studio City. Which is why I was not at all worried when my mother-in-law came to town to treat her children and their lucky spouses to dinner before we enjoyed The Book of Mormon as it landed right smack in the middle of Hollywood. Because Katsuya has another branch in that family tree in that neighborhood as well, one that looks like it comes from Vegas, but still — same thing, right?
Let’s make a long painful story short. As I was being seated in the flashier Hollywood sushi joint, I asked the hostess about a gluten-free menu. That nice lady informed me that my server could fill me in on gluten-free options. My server, however, had other plans. Plans that included alternately snapping at me and refusing to acknowledge that I existed. Before I could even process her claims that there was nothing I could eat, followed by her admonishment that she “never said that,” my sister-in-law was in full protection mode and turned to me and said, “Let’s get out of here.”
But all I could hear was the inside of my head screaming “We can’t miss Book of Mormon!!! We can’t miss Book of Mormon!!!” After all, I’d already tried to get into two other area restaurants and they were booked. This isn’t Theatre Row in NYC. When you dine pre-theater in LA, you take a right outside the restaurant you’re in and you’ll wind up having cigarettes and bottle of Thunderbird for dinner. So I took a big breath, and tried to have a discussion with my server about what I might be able to eat at the restaurant that apparently puts wheat vinegar in all of their rice and sous vides every cut of meat with soy sauce. It turns out, there were a few things on the menu the chef could turn gf, and so I ordered all of them. Or so I thought.
Clearly I’m not making this long story short. So I’ll skip right over the violent illness that followed and stuck with me for three days, and the three weeks of being not quite right on account of all the gluten I ate at Katsuya in Hollywood. As I tend to do, right in the middle of a massive stomach cramp I got crazy. Instead of stripping naked and telling my husband he should remarry quickly after I dropped dead, I composed an especially angry email to the press department of Katsuya. And what followed was nothing short of amazing. Continue reading