Friday, December 22, 2017

Gluten-Free Road Trip: Eating Safely on the East Coast

Holiday travel and vacations can be fun but stressful, even without factoring in seeking out gluten-free-friendly places to eat. The fact that the East Coast has so many restaurants and bakeries that are entirely gluten free makes the trip just a little easier. I’ve joined forces this week with Andrea Tucker of Baltimore Gluten Free and Abby Kelly of Gluten-Free Connecticut to give you a round-up of 100% gluten-free spots from Maryland to Connecticut. Visit their websites for comprehensive information on these and other accommodating places in those areas.

Have a Merry Christmas, Happy 2018 and safe travels no matter where you're headed!


Southern Maryland/Metro DC:

The Red Bandana Bakery (8218 Wisconsin Ave Ste. 101, Bethesda). The Red Bandana describes itself as a happy, healthy little bakery. It's a dedicated gluten-free facility that also specializes in vegan, dairy-free, low-fat and low-sugar baked goods.

Western Maryland:

Sanctuary Modern Kitchen (16 North East St., Frederick). Sanctuary Modern Kitchen creates classic comfort dishes, simply sans gluten.

A Better Choice Bakery (27 W Potomac St., Brunswick). A dedicated gluten-free, dairy-free bakery with a selection of corn- and soy-free products too.

One Dish Cuisine (8001 Hillsborough Rd., Ellicott City). Restaurant and bakery with special menu free of the top eight allergens including dairy and casein.

Eastern Shore:

Gluten Free Bakery Girl (116 N Talbot St., Saint Michaels). Bakery specializing in wedding cakes, cupcakes, pastries and gluten free baking. See website for other retail locations throughout Maryland.


Eat Deliche (1712 Fleet St.). Organic grab-and-go and meal prep.

Points South Latin Kitchen (127 W 27th St.). Serving traditional South American dishes and classic drinks in a heart of historic Fells Point.

Amano Taco (301 W. 29th St.). Authentic Mexican family cooking with a creative twist.

White Envelope Arepa Bar (301 W. 29th St.). Venezuelan street food at R. House food hall serving modern spins on the classic dish.

Sweet 27 Bakery and Cafe (127 W 27th St.). Bar, restaurant and bakery.

Harmony Bakery (3446 Chestnut Ave.). Bakery with a selection of vegan, dairy-free and vegetarian items. Savory offerings include soups, pizzas and tarts.

Heading North (Baltimore County):

Divine12 Café (10709 York Rd., Cockeysville). 100% gluten free, organic and non-GMO café serving a varied menu of nutritious, clean and hearty food. Don’t miss their gluten free fried chicken, crab cakes or filling soups.


Cafe at Good Earth Market (31806 Good Earth Lane, Dover, 302-537-7100). Organic food store and cafe featuring  food, a bar, and live music.

At Melissa’s Bed & Breakfast (36 Delaware Ave., Rehoboth Beach, 302-227-7504). Located just one and a half blocks to the ocean, circa 1910 beach cottage serves an extended all gluten free continental breakfast.



Agno Grill (2104 Chestnut St., 267-997-4524) Menu featuring fresh, healthy, nutritious Mediterranean Food.

Fox & Son (512 N. 12th St., 215-372-7935). Unique fare including corn dogs, poutine, fried cheese curds and funnel cake.

Farmers Keep (10 S. 20th St., 215-309-2928). Also free of dairy, egg, nuts and shellfish; most beers are not gluten free.

Pure Fare (119 S. 21st St., 267-318-7441; 1609 South St., 267-687-2292; 3417 Spruce St., no phone) Vegan options.

Real Food Eatery (207 S. 16th St., 215-608-8941). Vegan options.

Sweet Freedom Bakery (1424 South St., 215-545-1899). Menu is also free of dairy, soy, egg, corn, peanut and refined sugar; vegan; kosher.

Taffets Bakery (1024 S. 9th St., 215-551-5511). Kosher.

Yoku (119 S. 21st St., 267-318-7441). Vegan, egg-free and nut-free options.

Northern and Western Suburbs:

Gangster Vegan (2454 W. Main St., Norristown, 610-630-1600). Vegan.

Oasis Juice Bar (224 Sugartown Rd., Wayne, 610-254-9797) Vegan.

Sweet Freedom Bakery (1039 W. Lancaster Ave., Bryn Mawr, 610-527-7323). Menu is also free of dairy, soy, egg, corn, peanuts and refined sugar; vegan; kosher.

Sweet Megan Bakery (234 Holland Rd., Southampton, 267-288-5080). Free of major allergens; kosher.

The Happy Mixer (4275 County Line Rd., Chalfont, 267-663-7209; 32 S. Main St., New Hope, 267-664-4886; 12 Summit Sq. Shopping Center, Newtown, 215-860-1989). The menu is also free of tree nuts with dairy-free options.

New Jersey (Southern)

Philadelphia Suburbs: 

Sweet Freedom Bakery (577 Haddon Ave., Collingswood, 856-869-7322) Also free of dairy, soy, egg, corn, peanut and refined sugar; vegan; kosher.

Posh Pop Bakeshop (109 E. Kings Hwy., Haddonfield, 856-428-7674). Dairy and lactose-free options.

Heart Beet Kitchen (29 Haddon Ave., Westmont, 856-240-1106) Also free of dairy and egg.

Just outside of Atlantic City:

Kizbee’s Kitchen (734 W. White Horse Pike, Egg Harbor City, 609-553-3383). Wholesale and retail bakery sourcing local and organic ingredients.

Heading North:

WildFlour Bakery/Cafe (2691 Main St., Lawrenceville, 609-620-1100). Fresh-baked artisan breads, pastries and custom cakes. Serving breakfast and lunch daily made with freshly baked bread, Mary’s Organic Chicken and locally grown produce.


Along I-95:

NewBrook Kitchen & Artisan Market (37 Saugatuck Ave., Westport, (203) 557-6087). If you’re traveling along I-95 North, your first celiac-safe stop is in Westport, where NewBrook Kitchen, a 100% gluten-free and paleo café churns out amazing meals for dining in or to go. You can also pick up desserts, snacks, and other items from local artisans.

Izzi B’s Allergen-Friendly Bakery (22 Knight St., Norwalk, (203) 810-4378). If you’re in the mood for a treat, Izzi B’s Allergen Free Bakery comes up next on 95 North in Norwalk. They are dedicated gluten-free and top eight allergen-free as well. Check their website and place your order prior to arriving if possible, or call to see what they have in stock that day. They do not have a formal storefront, so you’ll be picking up your treats right in the kitchen!

Still Delicious Bakery (13 Boston Post Rd., Westbrook, (860) 552-4662). As you proceed north on  along the coast, you’ll eventually arrive in Westbrook, where Still Delicious cranks out amazing breads, bagels, and treats. Even if you’re not hungry, you must stop in and pick up one of their chocolate chip cookie lava cakes. We dare you to buy just one.

Shayna B’s By the Sea (247 Main St., Old Saybrook, (860) 339-3144). Continuing north, you’ll eventually hit Old Saybrook, where Shayna B’s by the Sea is located. You’ll find her dedicated gluten-free and dairy-free eatery right on Main Street where you can grab sandwiches, calzones, soups baked goods and more.

Along Route 84:

Swoon Gluten Free Bakery (109 Danbury Rd., Ridgefield, (203) 438-4326). If you’re up for a little detour, Swoon just might be the cutest bakery we’ve ever seen. Just swing south from Danbury to their adorably tiny little shop in Ridgefield. They may be small, but they make incredible treats worth bringing to your holiday hosts or hostesses. They have vegan and dairy-free options as well.

Pure Love Bakery (136 Simsbury Rd. #16, Avon, (860) 409-0302). Tucked away in the beautiful rolling hills of the Farmington Valley is Pure Love Bakery. They’re about 20 minutes off of Route 84, but if you have some extra time, this place is worth the detour. They make pretty much everything – breads, rolls, English muffins, cookies, cakes, brownies –  anything your little gluten-free heart desires. They always have fun stuff in their front case, but if you’re looking for something in particular, call ahead and place a special order. Oh, and don’t forget to pick up a bag of the best gluten-free granola around!

Nature’s Grocer (81 East St., Vernon, (860) 870-0020). After you pass through Hartford and approach the border with Massachusetts, you’ll pass through Vernon, which is home to one of our all-time favorite spots, Nature’s Grocer. Their dedicated café makes all sorts of sandwiches, paninis, wraps, soups, pizzas, calzones and more, which you can eat in their adorable dining area or take to go (vegan cheese available). They also make an enormous number of baked goods, many of which are vegan as well. 

Along 91 North:

The Sweet Beet (498 Salmon Brook St., Granby, (860) 653-2338). If you’re traveling on 91 North through Connecticut, don’t miss The Sweet Beet in Granby. It’s a bit off the beet-en path, but if you’re gluten free and vegan, it’s worth every beautiful mile. They have cases full of prepared foods and they’ll make sandwiches to go. They also have soups and amazing desserts.

Friday, December 8, 2017

News & Notes: December 8, 2017

California Pizza Kitchen is planning an early 2018 roll-out of a gluten-free cauliflower crust at all of its U.S. restaurants. The cauliflower crust, which debuted late last month at several southern California locations, can be substituted for the standard gluten-free crust used in all four of CPK's certified-gluten-free pizzas: Margherita, BBQ Chicken, Pepperoni, and Mushroom Pepperoni Sausage. The new crust is an additional $2.50.

All but two items (tequeños (cheese-sticks appetizer) and tres leches cake) are gluten free at TartAreperia 18.64, a Venezeulan BYOB in Philly's Fishtown section (1204 N. Front St., 215-982-1150). That includes arepas, empanadas and fried plantains. The tequeños are fried in a separate fryer.

The corn flour empanadas at Lima Fusion (at the new Ferry Market) in New Hope (32 S. Main St., 267-644-8655) are also gluten free and prepared separately. Most other items on the menu are gluten free, as marked on the menu. As mentioned here in October, Ferry Market is the home of a new location for The Happy Mixer gluten-free bakery.

The arepas at Pala'a in Ardmore (18 W. Lancaster Ave., 484-413-2392) are gluten-free, though the empanadas and corn chips are fried in a shared fryer. (Thanks to reader Kristen S.)

At the Brazilian Churrascaria Saudades in Newark, Delaware (230 E. Main St., 302-355-5551), all meats except the chicken legs are gluten free, as are many sides and salad items.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

First Draft: Aurochs Brewing Co.

By Chris Betz

The first thing you'll notice about Aurochs Brewing Co.'s logo is the tenacious bull-like creature and the black-and-yellow color scheme. The colors represent Pittsburgh, where Aurochs is based, and the animal is an aurochs, an extinct super cow-like beast. As the brewery's founders explain: "We brew with ancient, untamed grains to impart complex flavors shaped by generations of growth in the wilderness. We develop our own unique, original recipes that hark back to a time when man and beast refused to give up a life of freedom."

Auroch Brewing Co.'s founders (from left) Doug and Ryan
Aurochs' founders, Doug (who has celiac disease) and Ryan (diagnosed with gluten intolerance), are passionate about brewing great gluten-free beer. They produce only gluten-free brews in a dedicated gluten free brewery located outside of Pittsburgh, in Emsworth, Pennsylvania. Their dedication to quality and uncompromising flavor comes through loud and clear in their beers.

Session IPA (4.6% ABV): After years of big, strong, high-alcohol beers serving as the go-to for craft beer lovers, session beers have been gaining popularity. As the name suggests, session beers are intended for drinkers to be able to enjoy more than one in a sitting without compromising taste or complexity. Aurochs Session IPA lives up to that promise. It has a great hop nose with a piney-citrus bite that cleans up nicely. This is in sharp contrast to many gluten-free IPAs that tend to be syrupy and thick. Enjoy this with your favorite gluten free pizza or BBQ.

Blonde Ale (4.6% ABV): Aurochs Blonde Ale is a light and citrusy brew that reminds me of a Belgian Blonde. Banana and sweet lemon flavors dominate. Mouthfeel is light, making this an extremely drinkable beer. This beer pairs well with any light food like chicken or salmon. If you're into spicy foods, this brew will cut through the heat and bring balance.

The Blonde Ale and Session IPA, Aurochs' first two bottle offerings, will soon be available in the Philadelphia area, including at the all-gluten-free Farmers Keep in Center City (10 S. 20th St., 215-309-2928). (Check the beer finder option on the brewery's website for all locations.) I hope to see more of their beers this side of Pennsylvania like their Cascadian Dark Ale and Porter, currently only on draft at their tap room in Emsworth.