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    The Top 10 Food Cities for Gluten-Free Diets


    Roxanne Bracknell
    • Journal of Gluten Sensitivity Summer 2018 Issue

    The Top 10 Food Cities for Gluten-Free Diets
    Image Caption: Image Above: CC--Mark Gunn

    Celiac.com 06/22/2018 - The rise of food allergies means that many people are avoiding gluten in recent times. In fact, the number of Americans who have stopped eating gluten has tripled in eight years between 2009 and 2017.

    Whatever your rationale for avoiding gluten, whether its celiac disease, a sensitivity to the protein, or any other reason, it can be really hard to find suitable places to eat out. When you’re on holiday in a new and unknown environment, this can be near impossible. As awareness of celiac disease grows around the world, however, more and more cities are opening their doors to gluten-free lifestyles, none more so than the 10 locations on the list below.

    Perhaps unsurprisingly, the U.S is a hotbed of gluten-free options, with five cities making the top 10. Chicago, in particular, is a real haven of gluten-free fare, with 240 celiac-safe eateries throughout this huge city. The super hip city of Portland also ranks highly on this list, with the capital of counterculture rich in gluten-free cuisine, with San Francisco and Denver also included. Outside of the states, several prominent European capitals also rank very highly on the list, including Prague, the picturesque and historic capital of the Czech Republic, which boasts the best-reviewed restaurants on this list.

    The Irish capital of Dublin, meanwhile, has the most gluten-free establishments, with a huge 330 to choose from, while Amsterdam and Barcelona also feature prominently thanks to their variety of top-notch gluten-free fodder.

    Finally, a special mention must go to Auckland, the sole representative of Australasia in this list, with the largest city in New Zealand rounding out the top 10 thanks to its 180 coeliacsafe eateries.

    The full top ten gluten-free cities are shown in the graphic below (Image Below:  https://www.travelsupermarket.com/en-gb/holidays/gluten-free-cities/):

    Top 10 Gluten Free Cities

     

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    A very interesting post, tried cornucopia at Dublin and Hog Heaven cafe at Auckland. Planning to travel to Chicago soon, your article will come in useful then. Going gluten free has made my life a whole lot pleasant.

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  • About Me

    Roxanne is writer and avid traveller with a hunger for life. She spends her spare time cooking up gluten-free delights with her daughter and partner in crime!

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    Daniel Moran
    Celiac.com 05/08/2008 - I am here to help you with your needs as you travel, and to be able to keep the "Gluten Monster" away, so you can enjoy your trip.
    When getting ready to fly you have to expect long delays.  As a celiac that means you have to try to find food.  If you haven’t traveled by plane before you will be in for a big surprise.  The restaurants that are in the airports are always busy.  This means that it is like going to a restaurant at peak time, and, in my opinion, that is not the best time for celiacs to eat in restaurants.  You might want to try the fast food places that are chains if they are in the airport.  The usual method is to try to get the manager to help you.  Give the manager a fresh plastic fork to retrieve your meat or chicken so they don’t use gloves that have bread crumbs on them.  Ask for catsup or mayo packages so you can read the ingredients.  You can ask for them to make a fresh salad if that is what you like.  One of the good things about most of the restaurants in airports is that at many of them you will be able to see the cooks prepare your food. Never be afraid to say “I saw you put my food on the table and bread got on it” and ask for a new meal.
    If there are no chain restaurants at the airport go to one of the restaurants where you can watch your food get made.  Some of the restaurants have the cooking grill right in front of you.  See if they can cook the food (hamburger, chicken) on the grill.  You have to determine if they put the buns on the grill. If they do grill the buns on the same grill where they cook your food there is a good chance that crumbs are there and you should stay away or ask them to clean the grill with the razor blade tool.  You have to determine how busy they are and if they are too busy don’t ask for something like that.  Sometimes I ask for my food to be covered and microwaved.  This is a very safe way to have your food cooked and if it is busy in the kitchen, your food is well protected.
    You still need to be careful with the salads in these types of restaurants.  Remember that these places are usually busy and crumbs fly around everywhere.  If they are slow ask if they can open a fresh bag of processed salad for you because you get very ill from the smallest crumb.
    What Chef Daniel does when Flying
    When I fly I always have a plan B.  I bring a carry on bag with some gluten-free food that is in a clear plastic bag.  This is food that if security says throw it away, I do.  So far all the times I have traveled by air I haven’t been asked to throw anything away. I bring food that can last all day without spoiling.  I bring food that if it gets hot and melts it is still good to eat.  I like ham, pepperoni, cheese, vegetables, peanuts and some candy to keep me going. Just remember to tell the security that you have a special diet in case they ask, but don’t offer the info unless they ask.  You need to be truthful and most folks are going to understand.  Let the security know that you are unable to eat in the local airport restaurants and you have a long day ahead of you. You don’t want to cause any trouble in an airport so be willing to throw it away the second they ask.  You could pull out your chef Daniel restaurant paper to show them how serous you take eating and by providing your list it will show them that you are very serious.  It is just a way to show security how serious you take your health.
    Now you should be ok if you got through security and when the flight attendant comes around offering food, especially if you are on a flight for a long time, you have some food that will carry you over.  Most airlines will take special requests for meals but you are taking a huge chance on eating that food.  The caterers who do these meals for the planes do thousands and thousands of meals.  I don’t take the chance of eating such a meal.  I get way to sick if there is any contamination. When I call in for a special request for a meal I ask for whole fruit or whole vegetables, anything I know that hasn’t been on a cutting board.  
    I usually ask for carrots or other vegetables or fruit that I like.  I am scared of being sick so I will cut or break my food then eat it.  Even at restaurants I ask for whole vegetables for me to cut myself.  If you read my last article about my salad with croutons coming to me you can see why I am so scared of restaurants. Once you are burned you never forget...but you do learn.
    If you call ahead to the airport to ask for a special diet request make sure you are thorough with your request and tell them how sick you can get.  Ask the airlines if you can send a request per email or snail mail with your directions in how to prepare your meal.  I would ask the caterer to tape your request right to your plate so when you board the plane it will be easy to see.  As you board notify the stewards you are the special meal request.  Be sure to have a plan B. Look at your meal carefully when you get it and determine if it is up to your standards.
    I believe this article can help you travel gluten-free on board any airline.  There are always little stops where you can buy a piece of fruit or packaged products but if you want something more like a hot meal you will need to follow my advice to stay safe.
    Gluten-Free Air Travel Hints:

    You should always try to getthe manager to help you.  In any restaurant they have the most time tohelp you and they will help you because they typically care more thanthe regular workers (today’s restaurants have employees that come inone day and are gone the next.help.  It is sad but that is the way itis so at least try to get the manager. Don’t be ashamed to askfor anything. If you want a hot dog or the chips they put on the sideof the plate ask for a bag with the product inside.  Take out your safeand forbidden lists if needed and look at them to see if you can eat aproduct. 
    Always have your Chef Daniel's restaurant paper with you in your walletor purse.
    Always have a copy of your safe and forbidden lists with youin case you need it to read ingredients. Always have a gluten-free restaurant card in the language you need.
    Crosscontamination is the greatest risk for a celiac when traveling.  Crosscontamination can happen and you would never know it, such as when thechef uses a knife to cut a piece of bread, and then they use the sameknife on your vegetables, or when the chef uses a pair of tongs to flipa breaded chicken and then uses them to flip your sauté chicken.Thereare too many other ways to mention, but the main thing is that glutencould be on the tool before it is used on your meal, and it doesn’tmatter how safe the chef thought he was because you got one crumb andyou are sick for days and that ruins your vacation. Chef Daniel

    Daniel Moran
    Celiac.com 05/20/2008 - I am going to be honest—I have not traveled outside the U.S.A. except for Mexico and Canada.  When I went to Mexico it was on a cruise ship, so that meant I could eat on the ship.  I would take snacks to tide me over or get a bag of chips.  Hopefully I will one day be able to tour the world and educate everyone on how to make true gluten-free meals for all of us.  I also hope that my when the time is right I will go on such trips with my loving wife.  So I will tell you how I would approach a trip to another country and you can decide if this is worth a try.
     Planning for the Trip (All per emails and internet and phone calls)

    I would contact the area chamber of commerce or tourist office in the country that I will be going to and see if they have heard of the gluten-free diet or celiac disease. If I was staying at a hotel or resort I would ask them to look into gluten-free meals and if they have a kitchen where I could talk with the executive chef or manager of food and beverages.  I would also tell them that I am a chef from the U.S.A. I would go to celiac.com to locate the nearest celiac support group to where I will be staying.  If there is one I would find out about local spots that I might be able to visit to get gluten-free meals, and if there are any bake shops or natural food stores where I could get some supplies and snacks. I would find a book on the languages that they speak and make a chef Daniel restaurant form so I could eat in a restaurant.  I would have it in all the languages including English for the chef to make sure they understand I am very serous about my health. I would have a card that said “May I speak to the manager and I have a special diet request.” Hopeful I could say that in their language. I would have a gluten-free restaurant card in their language and present it to the chef or manager. I would have a safe and forbidden list in the language where I was visiting.  That way I could check foods from the store so I could eat snacks. I would try to stay at a place with a microwave and possibly a refrigerator.  By doing this if I ran into a language problem I could cook chicken or meats in the microwave (I have cooked whole chickens in a microwave on vacation before and put it in the refrigerator for later). I would carry cards with me to ask for directions or to ask a wait staff for something I might be able to eat.  Like maybe some cheese, beverage, snacks or any type food of the area that I might like.  If you were at a port on the ocean your card could be sauté seafood and with olive oil.  Even if I didn’t look at the menu I would know that because I am at a town on the water, they would have fresh fish coming in. If any of you watch the Travel Channel  you know that there are a lot of different types of foods.  Being a chef I would want to experience all types of different foods.  If I knew something about the local cuisine and how it is prepared before I got there, it could give me an advantage. In Hong Kong I would love to eat some of the hot foods.  Could I eat them?  Is it just the chilies or is it the sauce?  Those are some of the questions I would wonder, so I would research the area and review cookbooks to see how they prepare their foods. If I knew where I would be traveling I would try to contact a local restaurant beforehand to see if I could view their menu for the time when I would be visiting.  If I did this, I could make my Chef Daniel restaurant form up ahead of the visit. I would make sure that when I was at my vacation spot I could get Internet access.  By doing this I could look up restaurants that I see when I am walking around to see if their menus were available online.  Also I would be able to translate a chef Daniel P restaurant form for that place if we decide to go there. I would make sure that I had a phone with internet access to look up info at any time. Also with the phone I could translate a sentence with a Web site I know about.
    As you see I have put a great deal of thought into traveling, but not one of them has been tested.  I wish I could say that these ideas all worked for me and they will for you too.  My thought is that the greatest asset for us celiacs is the Chef Daniel P restaurant form you take into the restaurant.I would have every direction I could give on paper for the chef to see.  When I was cooking I cooked with chefs from around the world.  We all had the same common cause:  To make our customers happy so they will spread the word and come again.  So to me it doesn’t matter if they can read English or Spanish.  It comes down to me as the customer to tell them I have to have a gluten-free meal.  To tell them that if they don’t do as I ask, I could get very sick and it would be their fault, and no restaurant wants to hear that their food caused a person to get sick.
    If you are like me, you are going to want to taste some of the home town small restaurants.  I would know the area as mentioned before, and find out about any fresh vegetables or meats that I would like to try.  On my phone I would access the Internet and I would find information on the town I was in.  When I walked in I would ask for a manager, and if that person doesn’t speak English I would get one of my restaurant cards out to let them read what I am trying to say.  I also would try to read the card out so they could see that I am trying very hard to speak their language.  I believe that shows I am not a stuck up rich person who hires everyone to do what I want. If I mess it up, I would feel it is okay as long as I look like I am trying to commutate to them “I am very serous about my health.”  Asking them questions would be hard but I would have cards with questions on them and I would know what yes or no sound like.  If it was a small café I would ask to talk with the chef.  At least try to speak through my cards and being a chef I usually have no trouble seeing the kitchen.  It is an advantage to be a chef from a very popular resort that is known world wide and I would use that to my advantage.  Even if they never knew of me, I know my way around the kitchen and I would be able to look around to see if I could eat there. I would look to see:

    Is it dirty or clean? Does it look like they cut everything on the same cutting board? Does the cook look very sloppy?
    Even if I don’t go to the back where the kitchen is, the dinning room represents the kitchen too.  I am not expecting a clean perfect kitchen.  I am expecting the cook who might be this little old lady who has had this restaurant in her family for four generations to care about me. That is what all restaurants usually want—if they care about their customers they will survive for years and years.  It is a hospitality business in America or in Russia—and it doesn’t matter what you language you speak.   That is when you don’t have to worry so much about the Gluten Monster.I would be honored to walk into some of these smaller kitchens of the world and find out about their history and who they have cooked for.  Just thinking about it gets me all wiggly in side.  You can tell a lot about a restaurant when you walk in—if you only take the time to notice.
    So when you plan your vacation as a celiac you need to keep this in mind:  It is just like over here and it will take you some time to order and eat.  If you are in a hurry, I suggest that you take your safe and forbidden lists to the store and get some snacks.  If you have the time you need to sit and relax and take a stab at eating restaurant food from another country.
    Chef Daniel P.


    Destiny Stone
    This is the time of year when familiestake vacations and travel the world. Traveling can often be stressfuleven under normal circumstances; packing problems, flight delays,getting lost, are all possible when trying to get from point A topoint B. So imagine how stressful it can be for a celiac orgluten-sensitive person to get ready for a big trip, especially to alocation that doesn't cater to the gluten-free lifestyle.The following tips are geared towardhelping even the most sensitive celiac to have a fun filled andgluten-free vacation while minimizing the stress factor as much aspossible. This article covers the following: preparing for yourgluten-free travel adventure, gluten-free travel by plane,automobile, train or ship, gluten-free accommodations, gluten-freemeals and snacks, what to do if you accidentally ingest gluten.
    Before beginning your vacation, thereare many important things you will want to consider, like method oftravel, your destination, and gluten-free options in the city ortown in which you will be staying. To help find gluten-freeaccommodations and eatery's in your location, perform a “Google”search for 'gluten-free restaurants and accommodations' in the areayou will be traveling to.

    Planes Trains and Automobiles-Tips forGluten-Free Travel by Danna Korn Gluten-Free Transportation
    Traveling by car is the best way totravel, if you have a choice. That way you can stop at stores asneeded and load up on your gluten-free snacks. Trains are also good,because they allow and encourage you to bring your own food on the train. Planesand ships are where it starts to get a little trick, especially if you have a long trip ahead of you.
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    More Gluten-Free Airline Travel Tips
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    Most motels or hotels offer acontinental breakfast and that's about it. Short of eating coffee andorange juice for breakfast,there usually isn't much in the way ofmeal options for a celiac. However, many small bed and breakfast'swill accommodate you special dietary needs if you talk to them andset it up in advanced, and some even offer gluten-free options. To find a gluten-free Inn, perform a “Google” search for'gluten-free accommodations' in the area you will be traveling to.
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    What to do if you can't have agluten-free kitchen Gluten-Free Meals and Snacks
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    Gluten-Free Mall The National Foundation for CeliacAwareness (NFCA) works very hard to train chefs and kitchen staff allacross the globe, on the dos and don't s of cooking gluten-free fortheir guests with extreme gluten sensitivities. Check out the listthey have compiled of of GREAT kitchens that have the stamp ofapproval from NFCA for a possible location near you.

    NFCA GREAT Gluten-Free Kitchens list Unfortunately, not all restaurants havethe GREAT seal of approval from NFCA and the likelihood of one beingat your chosen destination is pretty slim, and finding a dedicated gluten-free restaurants are also rare depending on where you travel. That's why it is important to knowwhat to do when you go out to eat with a group of gluten-eaters.There is a great deal of information on this subject, but here aresome links to get you started.

    How to eat a gluten-free breakfastwhile traveling Eating gluten-free when traveling What to do if you Accidentally Ingest Gluten
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    Accidental Gluten Ingestion What to do if you accidentally eat gluten
    The most important thing you can do for yourself is to have fun. Stress can affect how youdigest your food, and then it won't matter if you avoid gluten, you stillwon't feel good. 
    Happy and safe travels everyone!


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