Eating out!

For those who become worried about eating out, I eat out on average every week and have had very few issues with becoming ill. Yesterday we went to Chiquito (national company) in Ashford Kent. Told the waitress what the problem was and had a very good meal without any problems. I had a Classic Chicken Fajita with a pot of tea(took my own milk) I didn't have a desert as the Fajita was filling. If you try Chiquita do not eat the popcorn. I do not ask for gluten free food just food that is wheat & gluten free and that works for me from carvery's to restaurant's to cafe's.

17 Replies

  • That's good to know! I have been gluten free for only 3 weeks and very worried about eating out because I ate some breakfast cereal with gluten in it by accident a week ago and became very ill, so very worried about eating out! I'm not so worried now, will be brave. Is there any chain restaurants you would recommend??

  • I just go into any restaurant, café even hotels and ask for wheat free/gluten free foods. I have learned what to avoid over the years and will ask for an ingredient list if necessary. A lot will depend on your sensitivity and where you live, If it is labelled as Gluten Free I tend to leave well alone. Any catering establishment that is any good will cater for you, be brave and ask what they can do for you.

  • Thanks for your reply, I think your right, need to be more confident, if they are a good restaurant they will cater for me if they want my business.

  • Hi Countrygirl01

    I have eaten in Pizza Express a number of times now and never had an issue. It's another chain that is waking up to the existence of that GF community.

    It's another nationally available option.

  • Hi Regalbirdy, thank you for your reply, that's great that Pizza Express have a gluten free menu, just checked out their menu, I would never have thought I would be able to eat there again, they even have gluten free beer!!

  • I had a great my out on Monday at The Commodore Hotel in Instow Devon, Menu was marked, they made a note on the order and exchanged non GF chips for new potatoes really helpful and knowledgeable. Several places in Bideford Devon now making their Menus very GF friendly. I must admit if they look blank when asked about Wheat/Gluten Free I tend to avoid eating.

  • I've noticed more and more places are GF aware. My tips: with chains, I just boldly go in and ask if they have a GF menu. What a surprise! Wahaca (Mexican street food chain in London) Gave me a whole completely delicious menu to choose from and my non GF friend even joined in and really enjoyed GF sharing-food), Carluccios and Wagamammas also have a GF menus. Leon has loads of GF food, as do EAT and Itsu (food to go chains) Most good big chains will be GF understanding, though that often means you get the plain food without any sauces! Other than that, small restaurants where they cook the food fresh are best because you can get the waiting staff to ask the chef.

  • Yes, agree on the chains. I've also had good gluten-free meals in Brasserie Blanc and Gourmet Burger Kitchen (GF dishes marked on the menu).

  • Carluccios also sell their gf pasta.. Nice

    We have a few smaller places I trust -and would recommend -in the East Midlands , notably near Sherwood Pines is the Dog and Duck. And just off junction 29 is the Elm Tree at Heath. More for Jerrys list!

  • There is a Coeliac Map site, where I try to remember to add any good places to eat.

  • It should be remembered that this caters for those who can tolerate GF foods many cannot.

  • I agree with Penel here and think that the coeliac map is a great resource for coeliac and I put places on there whenever I can.

  • It is good to see Coeliac's agreeing on at least one point, but then it is easier for some Coeliac's to eat out than it is for others. I prefer to use my own instinct when eating out. I am away for a week all inclusive in Tunisia next month and will be eating where and what I can.

  • Pizza Express is a reliable choice. Busaba Eathai (possibly just in London?) has a decent choice of gluten free Thai dishes on their standard menu and is also quite cheap.

    I find it disappointing when chains that could offer a GF selection if they put their minds to it just haven't bothered e.g. Yo Sushi. It's not difficult to do GF sushi at home so why can't they?

    As for pub chains I have been quite impressed by Miller & Carter. Had a really nice burger and chips at their Harlow one recently and jolly good chips they were too. An easy choice for an office lunch.

    I had the best burger I've ever tasted at Riding House Cafe in London recently, a few minutes walk from Oxford Circus tube. Longhorn beef and bone marrow, sans bun obviously but I always think that's no loss anyway. A bit pricey but a nice treat if you're in central London and like a classy burger.

    So I agree it is really pretty easy to find something GF on menus these days and no need to feel too left out (although Chinese restaurants are still mostly no go zones).

  • I've always found Nando's reliable. Separate allergy menu and when you tell them you're coeliac, the manager takes charge of supervising the cooking of your meal.

  • I still worry when I go out and especially since being ill last year I tend to choose places where I have had good experiences in the past. In the restaurant chains often the waiting staff do not appear to understand even when they have a gf menu. This does not instil you with confidence. I find zizzis, Carluccios and also the hand made burger co at Meadowhall for example understand and cater for coeliac, however you have to trust there is no cross contamination in the kitchen. What we need is a coeliac, gluten free restaurant chain! Anyone else could eat there as the food would be so good and fresh, Phil Vickery maybe??

  • The issue of cross contamination is a minor one, a decent kitchen will have hygiene standards. supermarket cafe's/restaurants are a far bigger risk as most use the same utensil's and note where the toaster is situated. I personally would not use a GF restaurant because the gf ingredients may contain more gluten/hydroxypropylmethylcellulose than I can tolerate. It is down to Coeliac's to get out there and demand food fit for them, staying at home does not help your cause. One occasion of being ill for whatever reason should not stop you eating out, just avoid the place that made you ill.

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