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Eating Gluten-Free at a Japanese Restaurant / Hibachi Grill

My husband and I decided to go out to a Japanese steak house-hibachi grill. After over an hour of searching, trying to find out "what can I eat" I finally gave in and called the restaurant.

I'm new to celiac disease, and wasn't sure what I could eat at the restaurant. When I called, at first I was a little leary--the young woman on the phone tried to tell me that they didn't cook with any soy sauce. I knew this to be untrue, but I felt a little more reassured when she said "If you have a specific allergy, they can always cook it in the back"

You see, the thing I hate most about celiac disease, is feeling so high maintenance when I go out. I just want to go out and eat, not interrogate the poor servers. I usually end up eating before I go out now a days, just to avoid the "possibility of contamination." (even that sounds harsh-contamination).

Well we went to the grill, and we had a really nice server. When I told her I had a gluten allergy (I read that saying allergy may get more

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attention than stating intolerance), the server looked at me a little strange. I politely explained that I can't have food that has soy sauce, flour, etc added, and as discreetly as possible handed her a 3x5 card I had written in advance stating what I could not eat. (Wheat, flour, barley, rye. I also wrote on the card, Also please no soy sauces, marinades, salad dressings or beer)

The server was so excited when I handed her the card, she sighed and said "Oh thank you, this will make it so easy".

So the end of my story has a happy ending. I went to the hibachi grill, they prepared my food in the back, and brought it out when the first set of food was served to my companions. My wonderful server also helped me avoid a possible threat--the salad dressing--she used my card I had given her to check the ingredients. Last but not least, for the first time in years and years, I was able to eat at a hibachi style grill, and I wasn't ill afterwards.
Am I still a high maintenance diner? You betcha'! But I'm also not going to be held hostage by celiac disease.

As always, Celiac.com welcomes your comments (see below).


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7 Responses:

 
Brian

said this on
12 May 2010 3:58:27 AM PDT
Whenever we take our gluten-free son to Hibachi we bring our own gluten-free soy sauce and they are very accommodating in cooking him his own meal in the back. He loves it.

 
Mrs. Lewis

said this on
11 Jul 2015 7:12:21 PM PDT
What type of food do he eat at Hibachi's? We are going tomorrow for a Birthday Dinner. If you comment after I've been than that's okay. I appreciate your help.

 
amy
( Author)
said this on
13 May 2010 6:45:19 PM PDT
That's awesome! I'm newer to the gluten-free lifestyle, I'll keep that in mind too. I was just so excited to be able to eat out without getting sick.

 
Carol Frilegh

said this on
15 May 2010 5:09:23 AM PDT
I've had good luck at authentic French restaurants as that cuisine tends to prefer pure ingredients and the chef always seems to be understanding.

 
Shannnon

said this on
02 Jun 2012 3:33:18 PM PDT
Thank you! Getting ready to meet friends for a birthday. (the birthday guy's favorite restaurant!) I'm taking your advice and have my notecard ready! Wish me luck!

 
Cassie

said this on
16 Feb 2013 11:14:30 PM PDT
Some actually use gluten-free soy sauce for all the guests and they can't even tell! It was great!

 
Mel

said this on
06 Apr 2013 7:15:12 PM PDT
I love the fact that almost all Japanese and Korean food is gluten-free. The fresher and more natural, the better, I say! being on this diet has made me so healthy. Unlike Chinese and American food... stupid batter!




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Ditto. However, this is what I can never understand about gluten free food. (see the bold bits which I've taken from the article) "We wanted to determine if gluten consumption will affect health in people with no apparent medical reasons to avoid gluten. Gluten-free foods often have less dietary fiber and other micronutrients, making them less nutritious and they also tend to cost more,? I wonder why what so much of what I eat that's gluten free doesn't have added vitamins - we of all people need fortification in our cereals and bread, surely?

Yeah we learned that the hard way. I am inclined to think (as I did initially) that it was JUST the Cheerios but as time is passing and she is not bouncing back I am worried that we need to strip away dairy again for a while.

Oh I have no issue with being dairy free personally but tell that to a 13 year old. We both went gluten-free at the same time and it has been mindlessly easy for me. But I am easy about food and no real food issues. I am far more adaptable. She comes to the table with her own unique set of issues that complicate just easily transitioning to dairy free versions of much loved favorites. To most they are jst that "substitutes" to her they are completely different foods and ones that she has no interest in eating. They don't satisfy her need for XYZ. It is like craving an apple and someone handing you a fish. For her anyway! LOL!

I believe the talk around this forum is that cheerios are not gluten free enough for people with celiac at this time. I don't know if anything has changed on that and when their lawyer calls me I'll quickly delete this. haha

Could be we generally say get off of dairy for a few months when going gluten free. The part of the intestines that produce the enzymes, and help break down dairy are associated with the tips of the villi, which are the most damaged if not gone in celiacs. THIS is why most of us end up with a lactose intolerance early on. And most can introduce it later after healing. As to her symptoms with it there was a bunch of research about dairy permeated the gut and causing neurological issues in a autism study I was looking at years ago. And there have been other studies about damaged intestines and how the hormones in milk can easier effect ones body. Personally I also have a huge grudge against dairy on a personal level as it is not natural to suck on a cows tits and drink the stuff, nor your dogs, nor a rabbits......I mean come on even Human Breast milk you would find odd to drink as an adult right? Back in the past dairy was a great way to get calories and fats when there was famine, etc around I mean it is meant to make a calf grow into a 500+lb cow. But on a genetic and hormonal level it is not really for human consumption and now days the whole corporate BS propaganda push and dairy farms shove that oh its healthy stuff down your throat. There are plenty of dairy free options for everything feel free to message me if you need help finding anything I have been dairy free for over a decade.