New gluten-free bakeries in the Bay Area

Posted on June 22nd, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Restaurants/Stores, SF Bay Area | Read 5 Comments - Add Your Own »

It’s happening, people. We are getting our own bakeries — gluten-freedom at last!

I am excited to share the news with you that you have a few new options for finding gluten-free baked goods:

migletsbakerycupcakesMiglet’s Gluten-Free Bakery
This adorable bakery features everything from cutesy cupcakes to personal-sized quiche!

  • What: a dedicated gluten-free bakery, and can accommodate dairy, casein, corn, soy, egg, and nut-free orders too
  • Where: located at 480 San Ramon Valley Boulevard #A2 in Danville
  • Who: Katie Alin, owner and founder (mom is Elaine Taylor who has celiac disease and founded Camp Celiac)
  • Website: www.migletsgf.com

goodchemistrybakingbiscuitsGood Chemistry Baking
With a daily menu posted on their website, you can find an array of goods, including biscuits, scones, cookies and bread.

  • What: a dedicated gluten-free bakery, with some dairy-free and nut-free options
  • Where: located at 3249 Grand Avenue in Oakland, near the Grand Lake Theater
  • Who: Jane O’Hara, owner and baker (has celiac disease)
  • Website: www.goodchemistrybaking.com

mariposafarmersmarketMariposa Baking Company
Mariposa isn’t new (it was started in 2004), but what is new is that it is at the Marin Sunday Farmer’s Market! Yippee! There are also many new products being offered, like cinnamon rolls and breads.

  • What: a dedicated gluten-free bakery
  • Where:
    • located at 5427 Telegraph Ave, Unit D3 in Oakland, in the Temescal neighborhood
    • also in a kiosk in the Ferry Building in San Francisco
    • also in the Sunday Farmer’s Market at the Civic Center in San Rafael in Marin County
  • Who: Patti Furey Crane, owner and founder (was diagnosed with MS and then learned she had a gluten allergy)
  • Website: www.mariposabaking.com

Amici’s offers gluten-free pizza

Posted on May 11th, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Restaurants/Stores, SF Bay Area | ADD A COMMENT »

amiciMore and more pizza places are offering gluten-free pizza, which is great news for the millions of people with celiac disease and gluten intolerance. Amici’s East Coast Pizzeria is one Bay Area chain that has stepped up and offers gluten-free and dairy-free pizza at most of their locations. They are known for their thin-crust pizzas baked directly on a hot brick oven floor, and their gluten-free pizza crust (purchased from Still Riding Pizza in Connecticut), is also thin, and is made on a special elevated surface so that it is not touching the same oven floor as the other pizzas.

Most of their toppings are gluten-free also, so there is a large selection to choose from. They even have a pizza with dairy-free, soy-free cheese (made by Daiya), called the Asante.

Their gluten-free menu is impressive not only because of the number of selections, but because of their awareness. There are notes of caution about ingredients used in the restaurant that are not gluten-free, such as certain toppings and salad dressings. This is a restaurant that is getting it!

Amici’s is also very involved in their community and very generous. They donate to many charities and I personally have seen their generosity when they have donated gluten-free pizzas to the Living Gluten-Free classes I teach and to GIG of Marin meetings.

Amici’s gluten-free menu is now available at the following locations: Cupertino, Dublin, Menlo Park, Mountain View, Redwood Shores, San Francisco (Lombard), San Rafael, San Jose, and Vacaville.


P.F. Chang’s expands gluten-free menu

Posted on March 8th, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Food Allergies, Gluten Intolerance, Restaurants/Stores | Read 7 Comments - Add Your Own »

pfchangs11P.F. Chang’s truly goes out of their way to accommodate the gluten-free diner and anyone with food allergies. I recently took my daughter there and they made her an entirely different entree due to her multiple allergies. They are always warm and assuring and my daughter asks to go back to “the noodle place.” They have also been very generous with our local Gluten Intolerance Group. This is one restaurant that really gets it!

And now, the great news — they have now expanded their gluten-free menu to include BEEF! See the press release below, and their menu…

P.F. CHANG’S CHINA BISTRO LAUNCHES EXPANDED GLUTEN FREE MENU
Enhanced Offering Includes 5 New Beef Entrees and a Total of 28 Dishes

Scottsdale, AZ. (March 8, 2010) – P.F. Chang’s China Bistro (NASDAQ: PFCB) announced today a newly expanded Gluten Free Menu, featuring beef entrees for the first time.  Gluten intolerant diners can now enjoy a wider range of dining options, from P.F. Chang’s signature Chicken Lettuce Wraps and Mongolian Beef to a Flourless Chocolate Dome for dessert.

“More and more of our guests are asking for gluten free options and we’re proud to offer them a greater variety of P.F. Chang’s classics,” said Gregg Piazzi, Director of Culinary Training for P.F. Chang’s China Bistro.  “P.F. Chang’s is sensitive to all of the food allergies and dining requirements of our guests and we strive to serve customized cuisine that meets each diner’s individual needs.”

P.F. Chang’s upholds a rigorous gluten free cooking process to ensure the dietary safety of guests with celiac disease. The restaurant’s staff takes all the necessary measures of precaution during the preparation and serving of gluten free dishes.

The newly expanded Gluten Free Menu features the following items:
Entrées:

  • GF Shrimp with Lobster Sauce – $12.95
  • GF Moo Goo Gai Pan -$13.25
  • GF Ginger Chicken With Broccoli – $12.75
  • GF Philip’s Better Lemon Chicken – $12.95
  • GF Chang’s Spicy Chicken – $12.95
  • GF Chang’s Lemon Scallops – $14.95
  • GF Salmon Steamed With Ginger – $17.95
  • GF Cantonese Shrimp or Scallops – $14.95
  • GF Mongolian Beef – $14.95
  • GF Beef with Broccoli – $11.95
  • GF Beef a La Sichuan – $13.95
  • GF Pepper Steak – $13.25
  • GF Hong Kong Beef with Snow Peas – $10.25
  • GF Dali Chicken – $12.95

Starter:

  • GF Chang’s Chicken Lettuce Wraps – $7.95

Soup:

  • GF Egg Drop Soup Cup – $2.95/Bowl – $5.95

Noodles:

  • GF Singapore Street Noodles – $9.95

Rice:

  • GF P.F. Chang’s Fried Rice – $7.95/Combo – $9.95

Vegetarian:

  • GF Buddha’s Feast – $7.50

Sides (Small: $2.95/Large: $4.95):

  • GF Spinach Stir-Fried with Garlic
  • GF Garlic Snap Peas
  • GF Shanghai Cucumbers

Dessert:

  • GF Flourless Chocolate Dome – $5.95

Lunch Bowls:

  • GF Buddha’s Feast – $7.25
  • GF Shrimp with Lobster Sauce – $8.95
  • GF Moo Goo Gai Pan – $8.95
  • GF Beef with Broccoli – $8.95
  • GF Pepper Steak – $8.95

P.F. Chang’s China Bistro, Inc.

P.F. Chang’s China Bistro, Inc. owns and operates two restaurant concepts in the Asian niche. P.F. Chang’s China Bistro features a blend of high-quality, Chinese-inspired cuisine and American hospitality in a sophisticated, contemporary bistro setting. Pei Wei Asian Diner offers a modest menu of freshly prepared Asian cuisine in a relaxed, warm environment offering attentive counter service and take-out flexibility.


Chipotle restaurant is good for gluten-free and food allergies

Posted on January 10th, 2010 by Alison | Posted in Restaurants/Stores, SF Bay Area | Read 13 Comments - Add Your Own »

I was shopping recently with my 3 year old in a mall when lunchtime rolled around. Looking for a quick and tasty lunch when you must eat gluten-free can be challenging at best. And if you’ve got small children you know that you don’t let them go hungry for too long or you’re really asking for it!

chipotleWe stepped into a new-to-my-area Mexican food place called Chipotle. I started with my usual questions about tortillas and fryers and marinades, blah blah blah (it’s get so tiring sometimes — I wish I could just order like un-allergic people), when to my surprise, the worker handed me an allergen card for all the items on the menu!

The allergen card lists which items contain Eggs, Fish, Gluten, Milk, Peanuts, Shellfish, Soy, Tree Nuts and Wheat. It is great that a restaurant chain has the awareness to do this, but the really great news is that the only thing on the menu that contains gluten is the flour tortilla, which is only used for burritos and soft tacos. Fryers are used only for corn tortilla chips and the deliciously crispy corn taco shells. Or you can skip the tortillas all together and order a rice bowl or have them make you a salad. Everything is yummy!

For those with kids, you can order just 1 taco! You choose what you want them to put on it as you go down the line. Also, quesadillas are not on the menu but can be made by request.

For those with food allergies, there is no eggs, fish, shellfish, peanuts or tree nuts used at all. If you can’t have soybean oil you are out of luck, as this is the oil that is used for everything, including in the fryer (I wished they used another kind of oil).

Be aware that there is a note/disclaimer on the allergen card that reads: “Variations may occur due to differences in suppliers, ingredient substitutions, recipe revisions, and/or food preparation at the restaurant. *Soybean oil, the only soy-based ingredient that we use, is not indicated as an allergen. If you have any concerns pertaining to consumption of soybean oil, please consult your doctor. For general information on food allergens, visit the Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network Web site at http://www.foodallergy.org.”

Reading about the company on their website, I have become impressed with their awareness and commitment to serving natural and organic food, and their mission of “Food With Integrity.” When someone told me that they were owned by McDonald’s, I just couldn’t believe it (food with integrity??) and checked up on that fact myself. Whew. They are not owned by McDonald’s. Chipotle became a subsidiary of McDonald’s in 1999, but Mcdonald’s divested completely from Chipotle and no longer has anything to do with it.

So, I am officially a Chipotle Fan! I find myself going back there again and again for a quick, easy, inexpensive, tasty, kid-friendly, stress-free and gluten-free meal.

NOTE: For those who are extremely sensitive to gluten, be aware that because they do use flour tortillas to make burritos, there is a chance of cross-contamination from the touching of the tortilla with hands and utensils (thanks to my readers for reminding me of this).


Mariposa’s gluten-free baked goods coming to SF!

Posted on November 5th, 2009 by Alison | Posted in Restaurants/Stores, SF Bay Area | Read 2 Comments - Add Your Own »

mariposalogoThat’s right folks! Mariposa Baking Company, the delicious dedicated gluten-free bakery of Oakland will soon sell their fresh, artisan-crafted gluten-free baked goods in San Francisco’s Ferry Building!

Starting in mid-November 2009, look for their kiosk where you will be able to find bread, biscotti, muffins, bagels, baguettes, ravioli and pizza — all gluten-free!

I may be taking a ferry ride verrry soon…

mariposabagels


Mollie Stone’s Bay Area Gluten-Free Food Tasting Event

Posted on September 24th, 2009 by Alison | Posted in Restaurants/Stores, SF Bay Area, Upcoming Events | ADD A COMMENT »

Mollie Stone’s markets are having gluten-free food-tasting events throughout the Bay Area during the month of October. For those of you who haven’t visited a Mollie Stone’s before, you will be pleasantly surprised by their gluten-free offerings!

mollie_stones_marketCome by and sample yummy GF foods on these dates:

  • Oct 3rd Saturday
    Greenbrae store in Marin
  • Oct 4th Sunday
    Sausalito store in Marin — I will be at the store representing the Gluten Intolerance Resource Group — come by and say hi!
  • Oct 10th Saturday
    Burlingame store
  • Oct 11th Sunday
    San Bruno store
  • Oct 17th Saturday
    San Mateo
  • Oct 18th Sunday
    Palo Alto
  • Oct 24th Saturday
    Tower in San Francisco
  • Oct 25th Sunday
    Grand Central in San Francisco

Some information about their gluten-free foods can be found on the Mollie Stone’s website, but they really carry more than is listed there. Also, you can find these gluten-free items in the bakeries:

  • AG Ferrari Torta di Amaretto
  • AG Ferrari Torta di Ciocollato
  • French Meadow Brownie GF Tub
  • French Meadow Macaroons GF Tub
  • Mariposa Biscotti Almond Gluten Free
  • Mariposa Brownie Mocha Gluten Free
  • Fabe’s Pie Gluten Free Apple 6″
  • Flax 4 Life Muffin Carrot Raisin 4Pk
  • Flax 4 Life Muffin Wild Blueberry 4Pk
  • Flax 4 Life Granola Banana Coconut
  • Flax 4 Life Granola Cranberry Orange
  • Taza Bar Chocolate 60% Organic
  • Taza Bar Chocolate 80% Organic
  • Crave Tart Franpane Apple GF
  • Crave Tart Franpane Apricot GF

Thank you to Mollie Stone’s for helping the gluten-free community!


Paradise Foods in Marin County offers gluten-free sandwiches

Posted on September 10th, 2009 by Alison | Posted in Restaurants/Stores, SF Bay Area | Read 5 Comments - Add Your Own »

paradisefoodsIf you are living gluten-free,  you really should visit Paradise Foods in Corte Madera, CA. Not only do they have a great selection of gluten-free groceries, they are now making gluten-free sandwiches in their deli. They use Kinnikinnick sandwich bread (toasted) and Boar’s Head meats (all gluten-free) so you can order up a sandwich of your choice — just like those non-gluten-free people get to do!
Thanks to Paradise Foods for being on the ball and my friend Courtney for the tip!

Paradise Foods
5627 Paradise Drive
Corte Madera 94925
Telephone: 415 945-8855

Directions from Highway 101 (North or South):
Take the Paradise Dr exit toward Paradise Dr (this will take you EAST)
Stay in right lane and turn right at San Clemente Dr
Continue on San Clemente as it veres to the left and becomes Paradise Dr


Gluten-free cones at gelateria cici in Mill Valley, CA

Posted on June 18th, 2009 by Alison | Posted in Celiac Disease, Dairy Allergy, Restaurants/Stores, SF Bay Area | Read 6 Comments - Add Your Own »

gelateriaciciLast Sunday I had the pleasure of visiting gelateria cici in Mill Valley, CA (11 miles north of San Francisco). After meeting friends in the square in the center of town, we walked up to cici, specifically because I had heard that they have gluten-free cones — quite a rarity in ice cream or gelato shops!

glutenfreeconeIndeed, there were gluten-free cones. In fact, there were only gluten-free cones. And not only that, but they were WAFFLE cones! I was actually a bit confused at first, making certain that they understood I wanted the gluten-free cones. The people working there must have thought I was kind of slow! It took me a little while to get it that all the cones there are gluten-free. Got it? (Note: if other allergies are a concern, the cones do contain dairy and eggs, and may contain traces of soy, but other types of gluten-free cones may be in the works for the future.)

Even someone with a dairy or nut allergy would find something here. The traditional gelato contains dairy of course, but they always offer dairy-free sorbets. In the summer they usually have 4 or more sorbet flavors (in the winter there are less because they use seasonal ingredients). At the time I was there, there was even a chocolate sorbet made with Guittard chocolate! Regarding nut allergies, the owner herself is allergic, so although there could be a gelato that contains nuts, the employees are well-aware of cross-contamination issues and know how to serve up a safe treat!

Other wonderful things about this gelato shop are that the gelato is made from scratch and is seasonal, meaning that they make flavors according to what is available fresh at a given time of year. They also use local ingredients, meaning they source ingredients from as close as possible. And, the gelato is organic (except for the Guittard chocolate, which they chose to use because it is nut-free). The owners belong to Marin Organic which is an organization that supports local farms and they make a commitment to buy from these farmers when they can.

You just can’t go wrong in this gelato shop — there is something for everyone! I look forward to making this a regular pitstop for my family.

Related articles:
Allergen-Free Summer Treats Guide 2009
Product Review: Coconut Bliss Dairy-Free Ice Cream


Starbucks will offer gluten-free cake

Posted on April 19th, 2009 by Alison | Posted in Celiac Disease, Gluten Intolerance, Restaurants/Stores, Wheat Allergy | Read 5 Comments - Add Your Own »

starbuckslogo.jpgIt has finally happened! After people (like me!) voiced their opinions one year ago about the need for gluten-free offerings at Starbucks, a gluten-free cake is coming! It is also dairy and soy-free, but for those of you also allergic to nuts, watch out: it is made with almonds.

An announcement was made on the My Starbucks Idea blog 2 days ago. It said:

“Hi, it’s Erin on the Food team.  I am so excited today to share an update on our blog about Gluten-free offerings.  Starting May 5 we will be launching the Gluten-free Orange Valencia Cake with Almonds.  And even better you are among the first to know!  Who better to get the first scoop than you who helped make it happen?  This product was inspired by the passionate responses we heard from you on My Starbucks Idea.

The Orange Valencia Cake is a delicious moist citrus cake bursting with Valencia oranges and topped with crunchy almonds.  Not only is it gluten-free, it is also prepared with 7 simple ingredients: Whole Eggs, Valencia Orange Pulp, Almonds, Sugar, Orange Peel, Gluten Free Baking Powder, and Orange Oil.  Plus it delivers 30% of your daily value of vitamin C.”

Interesting ingredients… definitely not what I expected. I can’t wait to taste it. I assume that if they are offering one cake and one cake only, they have made sure it is really good. Don’t you think? I’ll try to sink my teeth in it on May 5 and find out! To read more about the gluten-free cake, go to the My Starbucks Idea blog.


Eating gluten-free in the San Francisco Bay Area

Posted on March 13th, 2009 by Alison | Posted in Celiac Disease, Gluten Intolerance, Restaurants/Stores | Read 49 Comments - Add Your Own »

goldengatebridge3Looking for gluten-free restaurants in the San Francisco Bay Area? A while ago I questioned why there were so few restaurants in the Bay Area that offered gluten-free menu options. Since that time, I have discovered some more and received information from readers about restaurants that are doing a good job with gluten-free. I’m still not very impressed with the selection, given the number of restaurants there are in this area, but it is getting better and I expect that we will see more and more restaurants start to have gluten-free menus. One great thing about the Bay Area is that there are so many restaurants that cook with fresh, local ingredients that it is not too difficult to find a gluten-free meal. I just wish there was a little more awareness on the part of the restaurants.

Whether you live here or are just visiting, I hope these suggestions help you find a great (and safe) meal! I’m sure that there are more restaurants that should be on the list. If you know of a place that has a gluten-free menu or is gluten-free-friendly, please let me know in the comments or via email and I will consider adding it here. If you are a restaurant owner looking to offer a gluten-free menu, please inquire about consulting services.

Before you embark on gluten-free dining, I recommend reading the following articles — they can make things much easier and more enjoyable for you!
Dining Without Gluten – Course by Course

Restaurant Tips for Dining Without Gluten

RESTAURANTS WITH GLUTEN-FREE MENUS OR MENU OPTIONS:
(in alphabetical order)

Betelnut

  • Website/menu
  • Chain restaurant? No.
  • Type of food: Contemporary Asian cuisine
  • Special notes: Ask for the gluten-free menu.
  • Bay Area Location:
    • San Francisco
      2030 Union St., San Francisco, CA 94123
      Phone: (415)-929-8855

Cafe Gratitude

  • Website/menu
  • Read a description of the restaurant from another gluten-free blogger
  • Chain restaurant? No.
  • Type of food: Vegan
  • Special notes: Everything on the menu is gluten-free. It is recommended that those with severe nut allergies do not dine here.
  • Bay Area Locations:
    • San Francisco
      2400 Harrison Street (@20th Street), San Francisco, CA 94110
      Phone: 415-830-3014
    • San Francisco
      1336 9th Ave, (@ Irving), San Francisco, CA 94122
      Phone: 415-683-1346
    • Berkeley
      1730 Shattuck Ave (@ Virginia), Berkeley, CA 94709
      Phone: 510-725-4418
    • San Rafael
      2200 Fourth Street, San Rafael, CA 94901
      Phone: 415-578-4928
    • Healdsburg
      206 Healdsburg Ave (in the Olive Leaf), Healdsburg, CA 95448
      Phone: 707-723-4461

Crepes Cafe

  • Website/menu
  • Chain restaurant? No.
  • Type of food: Crepes
  • Special notes: The “Savory” crepes are made with 100% buckwheat and they told me that they cook them on a different surface than the wheat crepes. Make sure to tell them you are gluten-free to be sure.
  • Bay Area Location:
    • Menlo Park
      1195 Merrill St., corner Oak Grove Ave., Menlo Park, CA 94025
      Phone : (650) 473-0506

Dosa

  • Website/menu
  • Read about my experience
  • Chain restaurant? No.
  • Type of food: South Indian
  • Special notes: Look on website or ask for Chart for Special Dietary Needs
  • Bay Area Locations:
    • San Francisco – Fillmore
      1700 Fillmore Street (@ the corner of Post), San Francisco, CA 94115
      Phone: (415 ) 441-DOSA (3672)
    • San Francisco – Valencia
      995 Valencia (@ 21st Street), San Francisco, CA 94110
      Phone: (415) 642-DOSA (3672)

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