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Ireland - Tips Needed!
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I'm traveling to Ireland in a couple of weeks on a press junket. Basically, we are carted around for four days to different hotels, restaurants and activities to report on them for our respective media outlets. To this end, there is very little flexibility in terms of where we are eating and no ability to "stop the tour" to buy my own gluten-free food. While I have mentioned my celiac disease, there's really not much they can do.

 

Obviously I will bring a lot of gluten-free food with me (always carry nuts, chips, etc. when traveling). I also try and limit exposure by having as many safe foods as possible (breakfast: hard boiled egg in shell, yogurt, fruit in skin, etc.). Any other tips for this type of trip?

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Josie....don't even sweat this trip one bit!  I went to Ireland in the spring of 2011 and was thrilled to find out that everywhere I went to eat, every single person I spoke to knew all about Celiac.  Ireland has very high rates of it and they accommodate to an amazing degree.  On ordering my first breakfast there, after landing at the airport and driving to the hotel, they asked me right away...."Would you like Celiac bread with your breakfast"?  I blinked rapidly because I could not believe it.  Their Celiac bread is more like large rolls that are kept frozen and then heated before serving, so you get warm rolls.  They were very good too!  I was there 3 years ago and I hope things have not changed too much but this was my experience.

 

One thing to mention about bread......some of their bread may contain Codex wheat starch which is not allowed in American gluten-free diets.  It can contain up to 200ppm's of gluten. That was the information I got at the time.  I checked before I ate these rolls and they did not contain Codex because I would have declined them if it did.  Before eating any bread, just check to make sure.  Otherwise, it was very easy to eat gluten-free in Ireland and the people there are just so very friendly and accommodating, I didn't have to worry so much about food.  Bring snacks if you don't have time to shop for them but as far as meals go, it'll be easier than many places in the US. Make sure to try the salmon, if you like fish.  Best salmon I have ever eaten was in Ireland.

 

I am a very sensitive Celiac and it went pretty smoothly for me.  I hope you enjoy your limited time there!

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I agree with this totally:

 

Make sure to try the salmon, if you like fish.  Best salmon I have ever eaten was in Ireland.

 

 

and would add: no one on earth is more accomodating than the Irish, IMHO.

 

I would live there, if I could. 

 

Have a great trip--it's a beautiful country with generous and kind people and they "get Celiac". 

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Hi,

 

I may be writing too late for you, but thought I would post anyway. I currently live in Ireland, and have very rarely encountered a problem eating out, even in hotels. As the other posters mentioned, Ireland is one of the easiest places to travel gluten free. (Most of the problems I encounter eating out is finding gluten free food that is also vegetarian!)

 

Many restaurants have at least some understanding of celiac disease, and most can provide gluten free options. If you have a chance to purchase your own foods, most stores have gluten free sections, though smaller stores like Spar and Centra may have a limited enough selection. 

 

Also, it may be worth checking out the Irish Coeliac Society, if you haven't already left for your trip. Here's their website: http://coeliac.ie/. 

 

Hope you have a great time in Ireland!

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