Friday, May 17, 2013

News & Notes: May 17, 2013

Photo credit: Chickie's and Pete's
Although its famous Crabfries have long been gluten free, Philly-area sports bar titan Chickie's and Pete's has just put together a full gluten-free menu for its full-service locations that also includes all styles of wings, nachos and many seafood choices. The wings and fries are prepared in their own fryers. The chain has outposts throughout the Delaware Valley, with its newest spot slated to open this summer at the Tropicana in Atlantic City.

Another area casual-dining chain, Iron Hill Brewery & Restaurant, will be adding Udi's burger buns to its gluten-free menu. The expanded menu is being tested for now in West Chester and will extend to Maple Shade in early June before launching company-wide in August. Iron Hill, which has locations stretching from Lancaster to Newark, Delaware, is set to open its 10th restaurant in Voorhees this summer. News of the addition was first reported by the Burlington County Times.

Collingswood's IndeBlue, a modern Indian restaurant that serves gluten-free items (even naan), is close to opening a second spot, this one in the Midtown Village section of Philadelphia (205 S. 13th St.). The target date is June 1.

If you've been wondering whether there are gluten-free options on any of the food trucks roaming around town these days, Gluten Free Philly contributor Dori has the answer in Tuesday's post, "Streets of Philadelphia."

Citronelle cake from Aux Petits Delices
Reader Daria D. sent along the latest e-mail newsletter from Aux Petits Delices in Wayne (162 E. Lancaster Ave., 610-971-0300), which has a photo I couldn't resist running here. The pastry shop, which has a number of gluten-free selections, recently designed a gluten-free wedding shower cake made of gold-dusted layers of lemon mousse and decorated with chocolate, mocha and almond macarons.

General Mills has issued a press release about the new Pillsbury gluten-free refrigerated pizza, cookie and pie/pastry doughs. The release relays the research done by the company in developing the doughs and also contains the news nugget that there may be as many as three more gluten-free Pillsbury products in the next year or so. (Can I get a show of hands for crescent rolls?) The Gluten-Free Living magazine blog has some info on the products' "stringent" manufacturing protocols, while General Mills has also posted ingredient and nutrition information on its website.

Stella Artois Cidre, a Belgian hard cider, is now available in 26 states, with nationwide U.S. distribution planned for next year. According to the pitch on the brewer's website: "The taste of red apple and peachy, apricot accents complement the subtle flavor of orange, giving it a refreshing taste with a pleasing wood finish." Cidre (pronounced "CEE-dra") is naturally gluten free, contains 170 calories and is 4.5% alcohol by volume. It's being sold in four-packs of 12-ounce bottles and in single 24-ounce bottles.

New York's Steadfast Beer Co. will soon have its two gluten-free beers distributed throughout New Jersey.  The company's new Golden Blonde Ale is brewed with sorghum, honey, traditional White Ale spices and a Belgian yeast strain, while aggressively dry and hoppy flavors define the company’s flagship Sorghum Pale Ale.

Meanwhile, Colorado gluten-free brewer New Planet Beer is expanding its national beer portfolio by two. The year-round Amber Ale has lightly toasted caramel notes and subtle citrus hints on the finish. The Belgian Ale, available April through August, has subtle spice and honey notes. Look for the new packaging for the entire line and new names for the existing beers: “Tread Lightly Ale” is now Blonde Ale; “Off Grid Pale Ale” is now Pale Ale; and “3R Raspberry Ale” is called Raspberry Ale.

I'll be among the panelists (and one of the few with the XY chromosomes) at Philadelphia magazine's second annual Be Well Boot Camp, a ladies-only health-and-fitness event on Sat. June 8 at the Drexel University Recreation Center in University City (3301 Market St.). Attendees can try a new fitness class, get access to the region's best doctors and trainers, have their strides assessed at a running clinic, pick up health tips at cooking demos, and talk to the experts at the Marketplace. At 11 a.m., there'll be a "Gluten-Free Guide" session, featuring Nancy Ginter of the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness, health coach Jennifer Fugo, and yours truly. The event runs from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., with a happy hour to follow. Early registration is $25, with a buy-3-get-1 free offer for a girls' day out.

I've written two stories for the next issue of Gluten-Free Living magazine. Through Sunday, Gluten-Free Saver has a half-off deal for new subscribers: one year/six issues for $17, which starts off with the next issue (July/August). If you purchase through this link, You'll support Gluten Free Philly via a small commission.

Have a great weekend!

- Michael
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