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babysteps

Ct Restaurant Update-plus Hudson Val & One Ma

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Okay, we've been eating up a storm this past week - and best of all, NO GLUTENINGS!

Short takes:

Tuscany, Bridgeport CT - tasty food, moderately easy gluten-free ordering, an "A" for execution of gluten-free, $$ to $$$ depending on what you order

Caterina de'Medici, Culinary Institute of America, Hyde Park, NY - tasty food, moderately easy gluten-free ordering, an "A" for execution of gluten-free, $$ to $$$ depending on what you order

Brasserie Pip, Ivoryton CT - tasty food, moderately easy gluten-free ordering, an "A" for execution of gluten-free, $$$ (might get $$ if order carefully)

Republic Grill, Stamford CT - okay food, hard gluten-free ordering, "A" for execution of gluten-free, $$ (can do $ at lunch)

The Old Inn on the Green, New Marlborough, MA - wow! food, moderately easy gluten-free ordering, an "A" for execution of gluten-free, $$$ (the prix fixe menu on Saturday is a relative deal)

(ratings explained-

grades for food (yuck, okay, tasty, wow!),

easiness of gluten-free dining (easy=gluten-free menu, moderate=I give a speech and they get it, hard=you can do it but be prepared

A/pass/fail on execution of gluten-free dining (A= pretty flawless, pass=not glutened, fail=glutened),

cost $=under $30 for 2 people, 2 courses, ex beverages, $$=30-70, $$$=70-plus

Narratives:

Tuscany, Bridgeport CT - traditional italian, proprietor is from Bari, one of their specialties is grilled baby octopus (one of his relatives air freights it from Bari) - they were very accommodating, but you will be limited to perhaps 30% or 40% of the menu. Had stuffed peppers (cheese, veggies, sausage, but no bread crumbs hooray) to start, some of my spouse's octopus (also gluten-free), and veal scallopini as entree, usually they would have dredged it in flour but they make it fresh so simply skipped that step for me. Their panna cotta was gluten-free too (and like a cross between panna cotta and flan).

Caterina de'Medici, Culinary Institute of America, Hyde Park, NY - the #2 dining room at the CIA. Last minute, they didn't know ahead of time they'd have a gluten-free diner (usually reservations are tough, but early on a Thursday not in summer we got in) - and as a first EVER, although they don't have a gluten-free menu they found me gluten-free bread! Not great bread, but who can complain? Also they have gluten-free pasta. Had a chick-pea cake (more a fritter) with ricotta as a starter, risotto as my second course, and turbot in a clear vegetable sauce as entree. We skipped dessert. Prices are very good for the quality - since staff are all CIA students. Your server may have been cooking your food the prior week (everyone rotates), so menu knowledge is excellent.

Brasserie Pip, Ivoryton CT - the 'casual' dining spot of venerable Copper Beech Inn. Waitress was gluten aware (explained their fries no longer safe as fryer is shared - she volunteered this, so I knew they got CC!). Had charcuterie sampler to start (ex the usually included toast), then the pancetta-wrapped cod over creamy polenta (very tasty) and we shared a cheese course for dessert (again, ex the usually included bread). Different server did bring the table bread (they are known for their baguettes) without asking.

Republic Grill, Stamford CT - newish outpost of Tengda (Westport, Greenwich, Darien CT and Katonah NY) - they weren't very gluten aware, but learned very quickly. Brought me salad instead of soup (miso obviously out, no one quite knew about the Tom Yum), with lemon for dressing. Had an off-menu 'white' sauce on chicken, basil & veggies as they did not have any wheat-free soy sauce or tamari in house. I do suspect the white sauce may have had a touch of msg, but no harm=no foul!

The Old Inn on the Green, New Marlborough, MA - romantic preserved inn (dining rooms lit by candles alone, etc.) with wonderful food. Another last-minute drop in with no warning of my gluten-free status. Brought an additional amuse bouche after they learned I didn't eat the first round (they were on bread, one had soy sauce). Many gluten-free choices. I had the morel risotto to start, then seared duck breast with cabbage and baby vegetables. We shared a cheese plate (without the usually included bread) for dessert.

If we keep eating out this much, I might have to launch a blog...but not sure I have the discipline for that!


gluten-free (except unintentionally) from 7 Dec 2007

3 gluten-free cousins and counting (1 gold standard, 1 pos blood/no endo, 1 self/dietary diagnosed)

suspect mother was celiac (also, cousin suspects my mother's twin is celiac)

Feb 08 testing 'normal range' for gluten antibodies, IBD and food allergies

Staying off gluten - dietary reaction is compelling for me!

"Hi, I'm the gluten-free diner at your table."

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can't find the edit button, so ...

ate again last night at Brasserie Pip, experience wasn't as good.

Different waitress, was okay and bread was segregated (spouse eats it out) - but perhaps I need to change the 'open to substitutions' part of my ordering speech.

I ordered leg of lamb, oven roasted (menu specified "medium rare"), stuffed with goat cheese and spinach and served over polenta.

I received lamb rib chops (medium/medium-rare), a nicely dressed salad of watercress, and roast vegetables. :huh:

Good news: they were keeping me gluten-free. Hooray! :D

Bad news: hey, I would have ordered one of the other dishes that didn't need so much changing if I realized what was happening! Also I was looking for creamy (spinach, polenta) more than zingy (veggies were bell pepper, onion, zucchini). And I always order my lamb chops rare, cold center rare. And the sauce seemed to have coffee in it, judging from my waking up at 4:15 this morning! Hmm... :angry:

I went on line to make sure I hadn't halucinated all the changes (although my spouse remembered this as I did), and the menu they have suggests the leg of lamb is a new dish (it has taken the place of the "Blanquette de Veau").

We will probably try them again, but I will be more careful...


gluten-free (except unintentionally) from 7 Dec 2007

3 gluten-free cousins and counting (1 gold standard, 1 pos blood/no endo, 1 self/dietary diagnosed)

suspect mother was celiac (also, cousin suspects my mother's twin is celiac)

Feb 08 testing 'normal range' for gluten antibodies, IBD and food allergies

Staying off gluten - dietary reaction is compelling for me!

"Hi, I'm the gluten-free diner at your table."

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