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Universal Studios Florida, Any gluten-free Food There?


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15 replies to this topic

#1 abigail

 
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Posted 27 July 2007 - 10:58 AM

hi there!
I,ve been in disney park and we had the best gluten-free experience asking food in their restaurants, this time we are thinking about going to UNIVERSAL STUDIOS, FLORIDA,
had anybody had an experience there buing food? do you know if they offer gluten-free meals??
thx for your info!!
Abi
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Abigail, mom of Brian (36 months and Celiac since oct 2006), and Alan (9 month and Didnt try any gluten yet...)

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#2 taylor!!

 
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Posted 27 July 2007 - 09:03 PM

Hi there!
I love Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure!! I go there all the time and have never had too big of a problem. Usually when I go I will fight to go to one of the sit down resturaunts because there are more options. I've never really asked about a gluten free menu, but from what I can recall the only time I have gotten sick was when I ate from one of the fast food counters. Between the boardwalk, universal, and islands of adventure there are a ton of food options. I would say that your best bet is to eat on the Boardwalk because most of the food in the parks is from a walk up counter or buffet type restuarant. There are a lot of restaurants on the boardwalk including:
Bubba Gump Shrimp Co.
Jimmy Buffetts
Hard Rock Cafe
Emerils
NBA City
I have also eaten at Finnegans Bar and Grille in Universal and Mythos Restaurant in Islands of Adventure. Like I said I have no idea if they have gluten free menus, but there are definitly safe options that will make your trip more enjoyable. From my expierience, there is nothing as awesome as gluten free disney world, but as long as you stear away from the quick counters and buffets, there should be plenty to eat at the Universal parks too.
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<3 Taylor

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#3 Guhlia

 
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Posted 28 July 2007 - 07:04 AM

I contacted Hard Rock Cafe in Universal and they pretty much told me not to eat there. They weren't even very friendly about it.
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#4 bbuster

 
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Posted 30 July 2007 - 07:35 AM

Sorry I don't know how to do a link, but on June 20, I posted #317460 entitled "Great Experience at Margaritaville". Please look for this post for more details. We contacted Margaritaville in advance by e-mail and their head chef called me personally! We had a great meal there. NBA City was another place that responded to our e-mail and sent a chef to our table to help us out.

We ate at Hard Rock - they were knowledgeable but did not have many gluten-free choices. My son ended up just eating a steak and plain salad. Could not have anything fried due to CC (at least they were able to tell us that).

All of these restaurants are at City Walk - just outside the parks. For dinner, either go early or make a reservation to avoid a long wait.

Enjoy!
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#5 Lisa B

 
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Posted 30 July 2007 - 09:08 AM

I had just contacted Universal directly on this topic (as well as Disney) and received the following reply this past Saturday (July 28th):

Hi, in Universal Studios at Monsters café we have roasted chicken and roasted potatoes with onions, fresh herbs, salt and pepper and roasted corn and salads in there. We have fruit stands in the parks with apples, oranges, grapes, watermelon on them. Also have lemon slush carts which will be ok, also have turkey legs on carts that are just smoke plain. I have a full service unit it is Lombard's landing I have a chef in that unit have the server bring the chef to the table and he can go over all the things he can do for you, I do have gluten free pasta in there. In Islands of Adventure we have the Enchanted Oak in there I have roasted chicken, smoked ribs, roasted corn on cob, baked potatoes, fries all natural cooked in canola oil and that is they only item cooked in those fryers, and smoked turkey legs. Just make sure you tell them no corn muffin if you order a platter. Also have a hamburger in there too, just no bun with that. I also have 2 full service units one called Confisco's and one is Mytho's, I have Chefs in both of those units, have server bring Chef to table and he can go over the things he can do for you, there is gluten free pasta in both places. I have another walk up unit it is Thunder Falls, I have smoke chicken, smoke ribs, and roasted corn on cob and roasted potatoes with fresh herbs and salt and pepper, also have French fries all natural cooked in canola oil that is the only thing cooked in those fryers too. If you need any more information or help feel free to give me a call at 321-388-2123, Chef Bob. Thank You Chef Bob

If you go, please post back to advise how it went.

Lisa
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#6 StrongerToday

 
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Posted 30 July 2007 - 05:29 PM

I posted about Universal Orlando and Margartiaville earlier this year. I had a GREAT experience! I got the same email from Chef Bob, although they didn't have any gluten-free pasta at any place I went to. I had the roast chicken at Monsters (pretty good) but the best place we ate was Mytho's, they were so helpful and the food was sooooo good.

For Margartiaville, they absolutely positively went out of their way - including having gluten-free bread and cheesecake!! - for me. I probably would have ate there almost every meal if my family would have agreed to it.
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#7 minniejack

 
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Posted 11 November 2008 - 05:03 PM

What is the email address or telephone number to contact? We are going at Christmas and are newly gluten-free..

Thanks for what you have already posted.
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#8 minniejack

 
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Posted 17 November 2008 - 05:17 PM

We are going to Universal Christmas '08 so I had to make a few inquiries and the following are posts that I also put on the Disboards:

Just finished talking with the executive chef at the PBH, Herve--very nice. (PBH is Portofino Bay Hotel)

He would need about a 2 week heads up so as to make sure he has all of the ingredients. They even have gluten-free pancakes and muffin mixes for breakfast. Also has gluten-free bread. Also gluten-free pasta

If I want a pizza from Sal's just let Herve know my favorite gluten-free pizza dough and he will get it for me so that they would have it available

I saw on another forum a reply from Chef Bob about the offerings at the parks--when I get that info for myself--I will post it here.

From other postings on other forums: Margaritaville, Lombards, Finnegans, Mythos, and Confisco (sp?) really does a great gluten free meal.


AND
Thank you for contacting Universal Orlando®.
It was a pleasure speaking to you via telephone. As we discussed, we offer a variety of fresh, delicious food for our guests to enjoy. For the convenience of our guests with special dietary needs, we have chefs in residence at each of our full-service restaurants (Lombard’s Seafood Grille and Finnegan’s Bar & Grill in Universal Studios Florida®, and Mythos Restaurant® and Confisco Grille® in Universal’s Islands of Adventure®) who can create meals customized to suit individual tastes and needs. In addition, the managers at any of our quick-service restaurants can assist with specific menu questions to help you select appropriate items during your visit.

For the convenience of our guests with gluten allergies, Monsters Café in Universal Studios Florida®, and the Thunder Falls Terrace in Islands of Adventure®, offer the following gluten-free options: roasted chicken; smoked chicken; smoked ribs; smoked turkey legs; roasted potatoes with onions, fresh herbs, salt, and pepper; roasted corn; baked potatoes; french fries cooked in canola oil; and salads.

In addition, our full-service restaurants serve gluten-free pasta, and food carts throughout the parks serve apples, oranges, grapes, watermelon slices. The lemon slush drinks and turkey legs available throughout the parks are also gluten-free.

I hope this information is helpful. If you have any other questions or concerns, please feel free to call us at (407) 224-4233, option nine (9).

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#9 ShoLopez

 
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Posted 27 November 2008 - 05:30 AM

We just came back from a really wonderful vacation in Orlando. We stayed at the Royal Pacific Hotel at Universal. We had great dining experiences....
Inside Universal Studios park, we at at Lombardi's. Chef Bryan was extremely knowledgeable about
the needs of both a glutenfree diet (my husband) and a vegetarian diet (me...but I don't eat any dairy).
He also took great care in explaining all the handling requirements to his kitchen staff and our
waiter. It was so good that we ate lunch there twice.
Inside Islands of Adventure, we at at Mythos...another really delicious meal.
At Citywalk (just outside the theme parks), we ate at Latin Quarter....more delicious meals.
Husband had fajitas and the restaurant gave him corn tortillas (instead of flour) and creme
brulee for dessert. They changed the oil and made him glutenfree chips also while we waited
for our meal. Their guacamole (made at your table by a chef) is the absolute best!
Inside the Royal Pacific's restaurant, husband had the Pacific Fruit platter. The wait staff was really wonderful and substituted banans (instead of the bread that normally comes with the meal). It was a beautiful plate with fresh pineapple, mango, papaya, banana, raspberries, blueberries and blackberries.
We also ate at the Chop Tchoup at the Royal Pacific...no problem getting a glutenfree meal.
The wait staff was great!
We also went to the Disney parks for a couple days. I would not recommend the San Angel Inn....
Husband's meal was ok...but not that good. My meal was horrible. Vegetarian menu....yeah....
it consisted of 1 salad or a combination plate (flour tortilla burrito with beans and vegetables -
the vegetables turned out to be some corn). I do not eat dairy so they substituted beans in the
cheese enchilada - no corn. The waitress also asked husband if he wanted the vegetarian menu
also. We did not have a good experience at all. Note that we had made reservations and filled
out the special forms for special dietary needs.
The SciFi Diner at Disney's Hollywood Park was good with the glutenfree meal. Husband had
the Reuben sandwich on glutenfree bread and really enjoyed it.
Husband was disappointed with the glutenfree cookies and brownies at Disney. They were not
very good and were very expensive. Whole Foods does sell really great glutenfree bakery
products in the refrigerator section and they are cheap in comparison.
All in all, we had a great time at the Universal Parks/Citywalk and Royal Pacific Hotel. Next
time we go to Orlando, I think we will just skip the Disney Parks.
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#10 minniejack

 
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Posted 30 November 2008 - 04:17 PM

We just came back from a really wonderful vacation in Orlando. We stayed at the Royal Pacific Hotel at Universal. We had great dining experiences....
Inside Universal Studios park, we at at Lombardi's. Chef Bryan was extremely knowledgeable about
the needs of both a glutenfree diet (my husband) and a vegetarian diet (me...but I don't eat any dairy).
He also took great care in explaining all the handling requirements to his kitchen staff and our
waiter. It was so good that we ate lunch there twice.
Inside Islands of Adventure, we at at Mythos...another really delicious meal.
At Citywalk (just outside the theme parks), we ate at Latin Quarter....more delicious meals.
Husband had fajitas and the restaurant gave him corn tortillas (instead of flour) and creme
brulee for dessert. They changed the oil and made him glutenfree chips also while we waited
for our meal. Their guacamole (made at your table by a chef) is the absolute best!
Inside the Royal Pacific's restaurant, husband had the Pacific Fruit platter. The wait staff was really wonderful and substituted banans (instead of the bread that normally comes with the meal). It was a beautiful plate with fresh pineapple, mango, papaya, banana, raspberries, blueberries and blackberries.
We also ate at the Chop Tchoup at the Royal Pacific...no problem getting a glutenfree meal.
The wait staff was great!
We also went to the Disney parks for a couple days. I would not recommend the San Angel Inn....
Husband's meal was ok...but not that good. My meal was horrible. Vegetarian menu....yeah....
it consisted of 1 salad or a combination plate (flour tortilla burrito with beans and vegetables -
the vegetables turned out to be some corn). I do not eat dairy so they substituted beans in the
cheese enchilada - no corn. The waitress also asked husband if he wanted the vegetarian menu
also. We did not have a good experience at all. Note that we had made reservations and filled
out the special forms for special dietary needs.
The SciFi Diner at Disney's Hollywood Park was good with the glutenfree meal. Husband had
the Reuben sandwich on glutenfree bread and really enjoyed it.
Husband was disappointed with the glutenfree cookies and brownies at Disney. They were not
very good and were very expensive. Whole Foods does sell really great glutenfree bakery
products in the refrigerator section and they are cheap in comparison.
All in all, we had a great time at the Universal Parks/Citywalk and Royal Pacific Hotel. Next
time we go to Orlando, I think we will just skip the Disney Parks.


that's good to know--I was really worried about the Tchoup Chop (sp?) I can't wait.

Less than 4 weeks for our trip! Yippee!!
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#11 minniejack

 
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Posted 03 January 2009 - 07:56 PM

I am just pasting what I typed on the disboards so I don't have to retype everything here. :rolleyes:

If you do club at any of the Loew's resorts, let them know in advance what exactly that you would like to see gluten-free. Even though I had talked with the chef, that isn't who I needed to discuss the club with. You need to specifically tell the concierge a few weeks in advance.

They have a set menu for the evening and cheese and wine was pretty much the extent of what we could eat. If we had got a hold of the right person to discuss this earlier, they could've gotten us something for evening club, too.

However, Carla, at the PBH was able to get us some gluten-free cookies and muffins for morning from Whole Foods and they were delicious.


Unfortunately, New Year's Eve, the cut up cheese in the little cups was glutened and mixing gluten with wine for me left me blitzed and knocked out in my room... Woke up at 11 and found my DS13 who had eaten the same thing sound asleep beside me...We ran to the parks in time to give my DH and DD15 big kisses at midnight!

Mythos was great with gluten free. The flourless cake was to die for. Yummy.

We ate twice at Margaritaville, the 1st chef who came to our table told us that his daughter needed to be gluten-free, too, so that made me very happy.

Lombardi's--not so good--the chef kept telling me that I was the expert (you all know that we need to be). And the seafood marinara with rice pasta was only so-so.Mahi-mahi was just okay. Unfortunately, something must've been cross contaminated because my son was glutened and immediately began the trips to the restroom and he spent all of New Year's Eve day sleeping. Then to club only to get glutened again. Basically he has spent the last 36 hours sleeping with fever.

Fruit stands? Ha--only saw a few with fruit--apples and oranges--the vendors said that's all they had that day...

French fries--I didn't want to try it anywhere--the lines were always huge and I would ask the hostess and the manager and was told they also fried onion rings...we weren't willing to risk it.

At PBH, we had the most wonderful breakfasts. HUGE Pamela's pancakes, eggs, bacon and real maple syrup for only $10.50 We would eat later in the morning so we would only have to worry about one meal.

Trattoria at PBH had a fantastic NYE's spread that was almost entirely gluten-free. Delish for my husband, but I just sat there snapping pictures of myself because of the ealier gluten and wine thing

Mama Dellas had delicious salad and pasta. Keep in mind,order only one dish for every two people. Even as hungry as we were, we couldn't eat it all...huge meatballs and enough pasta to feed a small army. $20 for each meal. We had a coupon from orlandocoupons.com that made our bill only $30.
Pretty reasonable.

We never made it to Tchop Chop (Sp?) but they had sent us their menu and told me that they could pretty much make just about anything gluten-free, you just need to contact them in advance just to make sure that what you want from their menu could be made that way.
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#12 FreeTime

 
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Posted 31 January 2009 - 04:25 PM

Does anyone have any experience with the counter service eateries? We are going for spring break and the list that guest services sent me showed nothing that my 8 year old will eat. They did tell me that I would be able to bring food in for her such as PBJ, chips, cookies. But I don't know that she can live on that for 5 days.
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#13 minniejack

 
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Posted 05 February 2009 - 07:46 AM

Does anyone have any experience with the counter service eateries? We are going for spring break and the list that guest services sent me showed nothing that my 8 year old will eat. They did tell me that I would be able to bring food in for her such as PBJ, chips, cookies. But I don't know that she can live on that for 5 days.


Just remembering that it was probably the calamari that he had at Lombardi's that 1st glutened my son. The chef was supposed to come back out to show me the spices, but he forgot and in our hunger so did we...stupid, stupid, stupid.

In answer to your question, we did better on the days where we had a huge, late breakfast. I thought their counter choices weren't safe enough. However, we were there during the Christmas break when the crowds were huge. We've been there at spring break (pre gluten) and the crowd levels are low so you have more time and less crowds to just get in line for some french fries.

There were a couple of days where we just had some chips and a drink until we got back to the Portofino or Citiwalk.

There is a Whole Foods about 5 minutes from Universal where you could load up on some gluten-free food. If you are staying onsite, ask for a fridge for medical purposes to store your food. There is not supposed to be a charge for medical reasons. It was just a little "college" type fridge, but did the trick for my DH's meds and gluten-free food.

I talked to a AAA agent a few weeks ago, and there is a internet site where you can order the food and have it delivered to your hotel. I'll look for it and if I can find it will post it.

AND by spring break time, Pizza Fusion should be open and it really does have great gluten-free pizza.
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#14 minniejack

 
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Posted 05 February 2009 - 09:34 AM

Just found a receipt from Margaritaville which was our favorite gluten-free place.

A gluten-free fish sandwich was $10.25 and the huge Volcano Nacho was $10.75. It was big enough to feed 3 people. They even had gluten-free beer.
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#15 pojogirl

 
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Posted 03 March 2009 - 06:08 PM

Just remembering that it was probably the calamari that he had at Lombardi's that 1st glutened my son. The chef was supposed to come back out to show me the spices, but he forgot and in our hunger so did we...stupid, stupid, stupid.

In answer to your question, we did better on the days where we had a huge, late breakfast. I thought their counter choices weren't safe enough. However, we were there during the Christmas break when the crowds were huge. We've been there at spring break (pre gluten) and the crowd levels are low so you have more time and less crowds to just get in line for some french fries.

There were a couple of days where we just had some chips and a drink until we got back to the Portofino or Citiwalk.

There is a Whole Foods about 5 minutes from Universal where you could load up on some gluten-free food. If you are staying onsite, ask for a fridge for medical purposes to store your food. There is not supposed to be a charge for medical reasons. It was just a little "college" type fridge, but did the trick for my DH's meds and gluten-free food.

I talked to a AAA agent a few weeks ago, and there is a internet site where you can order the food and have it delivered to your hotel. I'll look for it and if I can find it will post it.

AND by spring break time, Pizza Fusion should be open and it really does have great gluten-free pizza.


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