Tag Archives: gluten free dining

Gluten-Free Los Angeles: The Addiction Bistro

gluten-free-los-angelesThe name is no joke. I want to go back to The Addiction Bistro for every single meal. I mean, do you see that gluten-free fried chicken with mashed potatoes, cream corn and gravy???

I can’t believe I just now made it to this wheat-free kitchen, where everything is made from scratch, and the chef is the nicest man in the world. But I’m glad I finally did. I met Chef Johnny two years ago at the CDF Conference and I swore I’d be in soon. But I get intimidated by parking in LA because I’m a huge weenie and would often drive around West Hollywood thinking, “But I’ll never find parking!” Yesterday, I not only found parking, I found nirvana.

My son did too with his Bacon Ranch sandwich (he got the gluten bun, but everything is available gluten-free)—

gluten-free-los-angelesYou guys, this menu is so filled with foods you never thought you’d be able to see outside of your own kitchen. I have to go back to try the gluten-free French onion soup, meatballs, chicken Parm, the homemade sausages and hot dogs, the homemade pastas, and all the PIE. It’s the most extensive gluten-free menu I’ve ever seen, and they even have a gluten-free IPA on tap! I mean, come on! And I haven’t even talked about the brunch menu….

My kids were totally in love with The Addiction Bistro as well and Chef Johnny sent out this to win us all over, yet again, gluten-free style—

gluten-free-los-angelesThat’s a chocolate chip dream pie, people. And while it was sat down in front of me, you can see my daughter shoved me out of the way.

gluten-free-los-angeles I couldn’t even reach it after a few bites! Which I was incredibly grateful for actually, since we had just left Cedar Sinai where my girl was talking to a pediatric GI. Sigh.

She’s got some celiac symptoms and since it’s been two years since the initial test (that was positive, then not) we’re getting her blood panel done again. It sucks. But I am more prepared to deal with it now if it we get bad news, and at least I know she’ll have a safe, and incredibly delicious, place to gluten-free chow down if it turns out she did inherit my crappy genes.

I’m super stoked to go back (as I’ve said a million times before) and get some gluten-free goodness up in me again. Don’t be like me and wait two years to go. You’re smarter than that.

XO, GIMB

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Gluten-Free Los Angeles: Barrel & Ashes

gluten-free los angelesAvert your eyes, vegans. I’m about to lay some serious meat down on you with even more meat on top of that. Smoked meats, meats in beans, meats on top of Frito’s—Barrel & Ashes has got all of that and it’s very, very gluten-free friendly.

Once again, I found myself in a dark restaurant which isn’t the best to photograph when you only carry an iPhone with zero photo apps (I’ve really got to to do something about that). But how much light do you need to show the awesomeness of a gluten-free Frito chili pie? This much:

gluten-free los angelesAnd this is where I say this restaurant in Studio City is gluten-free friendly, rather than straight up gf. While the smoked meats are naturally gluten-free (huzzah! the brisket is the one to hoard, try the jalapeno cheddar sausage too), the wait staff—while charming—aren’t fully clued into the gluten-free world. Which is fine, in the sense of they’re serving tons of smoked meats, it’s not their biggest priority and even I get that. And luckily most items on the menu are naturally free of gluten, so you know there’s a very low chance of cross-contact. But when you’re trying to be super safe and you feel like the conversation you’re having isn’t really registering, well, it’s best to stay with what you know is free of gluten. Like meats.

But I received mixed reports on that delicious Frito chili pie. The first time I went to B & A, I was told it was off-limits. The second time I was with a group and the appetizers were mostly off-limits so I made sure to double check on the Frito chili pie. In my world, Frito chili pie should always be gluten-free, but many people add thickeners to chili that could contain flour. Hence, my concern. This time I was told I was safe if “Fritos were gluten-free.” This made me nervous, but not too nervous to grab a bite. Perhaps my stomach was a little rumbly? But I’m not 100% sure. Which means next time I’d better skip the chili pie. This is my sad face :(

Again, the brisket is insane and I crave it daily. The sausage is also to die for, and the ribs are amazoids. I loooooove the baked beans with the pork belly. I mean, who wouldn’t? And the greens are delicious and I can’t imagine what could be inside that would make me sick. So stick with that, people and you’ll be happy.

MEAT!!!!

 

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Gluten-Free Los Angeles: Osteria Mozza

gluten-free osteria mozzaWell I’m feeling great today, people. Other than my prosecco headache, that is. But still, no gluten’ing after chowing down in a super popular, super fancy restaurant that I’d assumed was off-limits makes me very, very, happy. Very. I am sad that the photos I have from last night’s amazoids dinner are not so hot. So I will cheat and use some from the website. Like that first one. That’s nice, right?

Osteria Mozza is one of those places everyone talks about wistfully, but I always cursed because, Italian. I don’t know how I didn’t get the memo that they were super gluten-free and other allergen friendly, but now that I know I can tell you where my big celebration dinners in LA will be. Right up in that oxtail ragu, is where. This oxtail ragu with gluten-free garganelli pasta

gluten-free los angelesOh hells, that was good. Much better than the picture. And then there was dinner of the naturally gluten-free grilled yellowtail with some kind of chickpea situation that was OFF THE HOOK. Yes, I did describe chickpeas all street like.

We dug into it so quickly, this was the only photo I got of that deliciousness –

gluten-free los angelesI know, we’re hogs.

And dessert was gelato, of course.

gluten-free los angelesIt was dark in there, guys. And a professional photographer I am not.

While everything from the punch di giorno to the gluten-free amuse bouche were impeccable, there’s another reason I’m so in love with Osteria Mozza as a gluten-free diner, and lover of all things yum: These people know how to take care of the celiac.

When I made the reservation I put in the notes that I was gluten-free and celiac. When I arrived at the restaurant, the hostess confirmed that I was celiac, which should not have surprised me since there is a sign right on top of the reservation table that asks everyone to alert their server to any food allergies. Nice. After being seated, not only did our waitress know about my gluten situation, but the guy bringing around the bread did as well. As did the amuse bouche server, as did anyone who came within 2 feet of our table. This is me—happy.

gluten-free los angeles

The waitress also confirmed what I had heard, which was all gluten-free pasta is prepared separately and there is no danger of cross-contamination. Additionally, most of their main dishes (non-pasta) are naturally gluten-free, as are the side dishes, antipasti and salads. The only off-limits foods for me were the stuffed pastas and a lot of the desserts. This. Is. Heaven.

Mario Batali has been fantastic with his restaurants in New York as far as accommodating the gluten-free, and as a partner in Osteria Mozza (along with the amazing Nancy Silverton and Joseph Bastianich) he clearly gets how to make a celiac diner happy. Yes, this is a pricey meal, and yes it’s a special occasion place. But I have yet to have been treated better, and with such consideration at any other fancy restaurants since my diagnosis, so I will be back. Oh, I will be back.

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Gluten-Free Orlando: Universal Studios Eats, Drinks & FUN

gluten-free universal studios orlandoThis girl turned 9 last week, and I couldn’t think of any better birthday for my Harry Potter obsessed gal than a trip to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter right smack in the middle of Universal Florida. Yes, we do live within spitting distance of Universal Studios in Hollywood, but they don’t have the Potter. Yes, it was slightly embarrassing when people asked where we were from and we had to tell them we lived next door to Universal in LA but chose to spend loads of money flying across the country and staying at a hotel and getting our wizard on. But you know what? Who cares! It was this much fun –

universa

Also, the night we were there Olivia Freaking Newton-John was in concert and she totally nailed our favorite Xanadu songs. I might have just flown to Orlando to see that lady rock it out. And taking my daughter to her first real concert where we both knew all the words to the songs? Ummmm-azing.

What’s always not so amazing when I travel is the getting sick factor on account of not knowing my arse from a gluten filled airport meal.  Luckily, I had some guides in the form of GFOrlando and Eating Out Without so I knew I’d be able to swill Butterbeer, if I so chose. I did so choose. So did she – Continue reading

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Gluten-Free Los Angeles: Grand Central Market

gluten-free-los-angeles-grand-central-marketI don’t know about you guys, but I’ve started the official eating season off with a bang. I’ll be putting my vegan’ness on a part-time schedule, as there is much dairy and meat to be had. Much. Gluten-free mac and cheese, I’m talking to you.

I discovered even more goodness last Friday when the family decided to be adventurous and head outside of our neighborhood. Hey, it’s LA. It’s not easy to explore. I mean, unless you have a car. Which we do. Nevermind. Let’s just say I left my neighborhood and found some things.

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Gluten-Free Los Angeles: Meet My New Most Favorite Pizza

best gluten-free pizza Do you know what’s super cool? When you stumble upon gluten-free deliciousness, and not at all on purpose. That happened to me three times on a lunchtime walk the other day. Three times! Apparently that’s what can happen when you walk around Los Angeles. Who knew? Who knew you could even walk around Los Angeles? Now, you all do.

So the first gluten-free spotting I had was Caffe, Etc. where I found these awesome signs: Continue reading

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A Celiac Walks Into a Bakery . . .

gluten-free la brea bakeryOh yes, I did.

Look, I know it’s dumb to a) walk into a bakery, and b) expect that one of the most famous bakeries in America would be all, “Oh, you bet. EVERYTHING is gluten-free.” But I was waiting on my kid to finish her Saturday morning class and right down that very street was the incredibly delicious La Brea Bakery. And all up in it’s new digs!

Not unlike that time I was craving burritos and so I went to the burrito place knowing I could not have them, I just walked on into La Brea Bakery like I owned the place. Which I do not. Perhaps I was buoyed by my last trip into the bakery when it was just a lil’ ol’ bakery and they offered gluten-free macaroons. I thought, well, at least they have one thing I can eat. I was also assuming that even if he laughed at me, the waiter would know what had gluten and what did not. This, I was wrong about.

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