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cuteshorn

Listing Allergens On Restaurant Menus?

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Hi. I'm new here and I'm writing because I had an incident at a restaurant last night. It was the melting pot and they do not list on their menu or website that ALL their cheese is coated with flour. It only came up in coversation because we asked about their method and they said it was their "trick". I was extremely upset because I never would have questioned that CHEESE contain flour, esp. when they make it at the table and you don't actually SEE the flour being added. Perhaps my fault for not being more upfront about my allergy but regardless of that, I was treated very poorly. Are there any FDA guidelines about this?

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I don't think restaurants are required to list anything on their menu. Which stinks because I don't automatically think "oh, cheese, I should ask if that contains wheat" and the servers often don't realize that something has wheat or it slips their mind when they're trying to think of gluten ingredients. I think if you ask and they say no wheat, that's not right, but legally I'm not sure if you have any grounds (I mention this because I saw your other post about FDA regulations). I just read an article about whether restaurants should be required to list ingredients (more in terms of transfats and total calories), and it's the great debate of whether people should take responsibility for what they consume or whether we should tell them straight up that they're eating unhealthy food. Obviously this doesn't apply so much to celiac, but to get ingredients required on menus, you're going to have to convince the people who think others should make their own choices about what they eat rather than having it "forced" upon them.

I find talking to the manager is almost always the best way to go. Of course, some restaurants would rather not take the risk of dealing with food allergies/intolerances and will refuse to serve you. Those are the restaurants I (and all my friends with me) steer clear of. Calling ahead of time can be a good way to get a feel for how the restaurant will react to your diet.


Gluten-Free since September 15, 2005.

Peanut-Free since July 2006.

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Allergens do not have to be listed at restaurants, although a number do list them. That said, one should always be cautious around fondue -- many use flour as part of the recipe.

richard

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Oh man, that used to be my favorite restaurant before I got celiac disease. :(

Did you get to eat the chocolate fondue for dessert, or does that have flour in it too?


♥ Laura

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they coat ALL their cheese in flour and that this is their "secret trick".

Sounds to me like a way to make their product cheaper by using flour as filler.


"But then, in all honesty, if scientists don't play god, who will?"

- James Watson

My sources are unreliable, but their information is fascinating.

- Ashleigh Brilliant

Leap, and the net will appear.

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I hope that you know that any veined cheese (bleu, roquefort, stilton, gorgonzola, etc) MAY contain a gluten source, no matter where you get the cheese. The mold isn't growing on the cheese; it's growing on what they put IN the cheese. Bleu cheese, for example, originated by someone mixing bits of French bread into the cheese mixture, which molds and causes the blue coloration.

That said, some brands of these cheeses MAY be ok for us. Always check labels.

More on the topic, it seems to me that I read somewhere in this forum that The Melting Pot had issued a statement (maybe it was just one manager to one potential gluten-free patron) that NOTHING on their menu could be considered gluten-free. For that reason, The Melting Pot had completely disappeared from my consideration.

-- Bill


DX'ed celiac June 2006 by blood and biopsy

Gluten-free and healthy since

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