Where to Eat Gluten-Free from Coast to Coast
Gluten-Free from Coast to Coast
Gluten sensitive? Got celiac? There's no reason to deprive yourself. Groundbreaking gluten-free restaurants have been popping up across the country — bakeries, cafes and even food trucks! Grab a fork and go.
Photo courtesy of Little Beet
Asheville, NC: Posana
Posana is not what you think of when you think of gluten-free dining. This beautiful contemporary American restaurant's chef and co-owner, Peter Pollay, wooed his wife Martha through cooking. When she was diagnosed with celiac disease, his first instinct was to get in the kitchen and cook. After amassing a variety of recipes, in 2009, Pollay opened Posana as an ode to Martha — with a focus on seasonal, local and sustainable foods. His wife is not the only one who's benefited. The lobster mac 'n' cheese is a fave.
Photo courtesy of Posana
Chicago: Wheat's End Cafe
Cheddar-chive biscuits, carrot muffins, chocolate doughnuts and orange-cranberry scones don't exactly sound gluten-free, but that's exactly what's on the menu at Wheat's End Cafe in Chicago. Owners Amelia Fonti and Susan McMillan are serious about their celiac safety. The two started cooking gluten-free when a close friend was diagnosed with celiac disease. Around the same time, Fonti learned that she too was gluten-intolerant. The result was Wheat's End Artisan Foods, a 100-percent-gluten-free food company, and Wheat's End Cafe, a friendly haven for coffee anytime and gluten-free brunch on Sundays. Prosciutto Benedict on a gluten-free English muffin, anyone? Yes!
Photo by Amelia Fonti
Los Angeles: Cafe Gratitude
Cafe Gratitude, a transplant from San Francisco, is all about giving thanks — to the world, to the environment, to your self. That spirit of being generous and grateful every day translates to a menu that honors the earth with a dedication to local farmers, sustainable agriculture and environmentally friendly products. The organic, vegan menu is also mostly gluten-free. Try the Open-Hearted (gluten-free pancakes made with buckwheat and flax) or the "I Am Fortified," a tasty quinoa or brown rice bowl with sprouts and vegetables.
New Orleans and San Francisco: 3 Potato 4
Organic, gluten-free baked-potato fries are the draw at 3 Potato 4, a fast-casual, cosmonaut-themed spud emporium with locations in New Orleans and San Francisco. Served in a biodegradable paper cone, these baked beauties come in Russet, Redskin, Sweet Potato, Crinkle Cut, Purple Potato Medley or Curly-Q and are all vegan or vegetarian. To dip, there are gluten-free sauces made in-house, such as Chipotle Mayo, Curry Ketchup, Chinese Firecracker and Big Bang. Dark chocolate-covered frozen bananas for dessert!
New York City: Little Beet
"We are now in an era where a lot of people are whole-foods-driven. They are looking at alternative grains like quinoa, amaranth and millet, and they want to eat more vegetables," says Franklin Becker, the chef and partner in Little Beet — a fast and casual restaurant serving local, seasonal, gluten-free and vegetarian-friendly eats. With three locations in New York City, you'll find the restaurant packed with suits who've happily traded in their subs and slices for the likes of buckwheat soba noodles, charred kale, roasted sweet potatoes and brown rice.
If you've eaten at Zahav, Michael Solomonov's outstanding Israeli restaurant featuring the flavors of the Middle East and the Mediterranean, chances are you're counting the days until you can go back. The food is miraculous. What's more, much of it is naturally gluten-free: fried cauliflower with labaneh with chive, dill, mint and garlic; fried haloumi with dates, pickled onion, walnuts and urfa; roasted zucchini with tehina, Bulgarian feta and hazelnuts; cobia crudo with Turkish salad and fava beans; roasted lamb shoulder with pomegranate and chickpeas; and Solomonov's signature Hummus Masbacha with warm chickpeas.
Photo by Jason Varney
Saint Joseph, Mich.: Baja Gringo Tacos
Former firehouse cook Scott Gane runs this groovy gluten-free taco truck in southwest Michigan. He uses non-GMO corn shells and chips, and sources as locally as he can for his menu of beef, chicken, pork and California-style Baja Tacos. Look for specials like Asian ahi tuna tacos and the Devil Dawg taco with homemade spicy Baja Gringo relish. Guacamole, salsa fresca and pico de gallo are all made fresh on the truck. Gane, who is gluten-free at home, took to the food truck culture, attracted by its flexibility, low overhead and irreverent lifestyle. Plus, he says, "everything tastes better when it's in a taco." Agreed! Follow him on Twitter, @BajaGringoTaco, and on Facebook, on the BajaGringo Taco Truck page.
San Francisco: Seed + Salt
Quinoa falafel, chickpea frittata, and revolutionary sandwiches like the S+S Beet Burger (beets, walnuts, lentils, mushrooms, brown rice, raisins, spices and smoked sea salt plus ranch dressing, served on a gluten-free burger bun) and The Powerhouse (black bean tempeh, chimichurri, flax mayo and pickled red onion) are on the menu at Seed + Salt, a haven for gluten-free whole-food addicts in San Francisco. And if you thought there was no way to make a great gluten-free, whole-grain, vegan baguette, you were wrong.
Photo by Aubrie Pick
Washington, D.C.: Rise Bakery
Michael Koritko was inspired to open Rise Bakery after he was diagnosed with celiac disease in 2005 and realized there were no bakeries in the D.C. area that catered to his dietary needs. In 2014, he started serving a line of "Gluten-free, Flavor-full" treats at Rise Bakery. There, you can expect a dizzying array of gluten-free croissants, breads, bagels, muffins, savory pies, brownies, pies, cinnamon rolls and more, made using nut, tapioca, rice and coconut flours rather than wheat. Many of the items are also dairy-free and vegan. Good news for all.
West Haven, Conn.: Georgie's Diner
Dating back to 1956, Georgie's Diner moved to its West Haven location in 1967, and was renovated and restored in 2009 by George Anthis. In addition to its regular vegetarian-friendly menu, you'll find one that's gluten-free and stocked with impeccably sourced ingredients — grass-fed organic beef, organic eggs and freshly squeezed juices. Sandwiches like the Cherry Bomb and the Chicken Souvlaki are standouts at lunch, and the gluten-free French toast stuffed with cream cheese and topped with fresh fruit is a great way to start your day.