Gluten Free Nashville

by Katie Eckeberger

Cafe Latte : ) August 18, 2009

For the past two months, I’ve been working at a local coffee shop called Cafe Latte in the Cool Springs Galleria (Franklin, TN – also a location in Murfreesboro).

First of all, we have GREAT drinks. I recommend anyone to come there.

It may not be the first thought of a GF consumer to worry about beverages, but its especially important to be concerned with what’s in your coffee. It used to be as simple as a cup-a-joe, but now coffee involves milk or soy, flavored syrups, espresso and mysterious powders. With everything going into the drinks, there’s always a possibility of hidden gluten ingredients or cross-contamination, so I decided to look into it…

The products Cafe Latte uses are from the following companies:

Big Train (powders for smoothies, chai and frozen coffees)

Torani Flavored Syrups

Ghirardelli (ground white and semi-sweet chocolate, caramel sauce)

Jet Smoothies

I have personally contacted these companies and all have verified for me whether their products are or are not GF and good news! They’re ALL GLUTEN FREE!!!

Big Train products are GF, but are not completely void of cross-contamination.

There are only 4 flavors of Torani syrups that contain gluten (Toasted Marshmallow, Sugar-free French Vanilla, Sugar-free Classic Caramel and Classic Caramel). All other flavors are GF.

Jet Smoothies and Ghirardelli powders are GF and contaminate free.

I would not recommend someone who is extremely gluten intolerant to have anything but our fresh brewed coffee, or a latte with no flavors. There is too much powder dust flying through the air, re-use of dishes, and drops of liquid flying around to risk your health. But for the most part, Cafe Latte is a safe place to get a blended mocha freezuccino, a mango madness smoothie or a chai tea latte. And of course our drinks are delicious!  (I recommend and iced soy coconut latte or amaretto and steamed milk in your coffee – delish!)

So, stop by the coffee stand in the Galleria or the NEW Cafe Latte Coffee Co. in Murfreesboro and rest assured you’re gonna get a GREAT GF drink!

live well,

Katie

 

Garlic Jim’s : ) July 10, 2009

You know you’ve found a good GF pizza, when after taking the first, second and even last bite, you’re not completely sure it’s GF or not! That is how Garlic Jim’s GF pizza is… it’s so delicious, I could easily put it in a taste test with some non-GF thin crust pizzas and it might win.

Not only was the pizza outstanding, but so was the service. We were at Target in Cool Springs when we called for our pick-up order. By the time we made it down Mallory Lane to Garlic Jim’s, our pizza was ready for us (in less than 10 minutes!). And this wasn’t at a random time in the middle of the day. This was during the dinner rush hour. Also, the staff was wise to let us know that the pizza is not 100% GF due to wheat flour blowing through the air in the kitchen.

Unfortunately, we only have the one location in TN (in Cool Springs, across from Centennial High School), but Garlic Jim’s has many more available locations on the West Coast, Colorado and Florida.

I can’t wait to try one of their specialty pizzas on the GF crust! Mmmmmmm : )

Live well,

Katie

 

Jason’s Deli : ) May 18, 2009

My husband and I eat at Jason’s Deli a lot! Their food is always fresh, delicious and they’re often open after other restaurants are closed : )

On our last visit I finally decided to really check out the allergy info and even though some things were disappointing (some soups, potato chips and other prepared foods), I was pleasantly surprised at how much really was available to the GF community. I won’t list everything on here but I will mention a few good options such as the tuna salad plate, fruit plate with creamy fruit dip, Texas Style Spud with BBQ beef and red beans and rice!

Now, if you are gluten intolerant like I am and don’t require a completely GF diet, there are more options for you. For instance, I can eat some of the non-GF soups and the potato chips and be ok. (My favorite thing to eat is the Spud Au Broc – a HUGE baked potato smothered in broccoli cheese soup, cheese, bacon, green onions and steamed broccoli. Sorry hardcore GF-ers but the broccoli soup is not GF) ***PLEASE make sure you know what your body can handle before you try some non-GF items!***

So if you’ve never tried Jason’s Deli before I reccommend it, but I also reccommend that you know your allergy info before you go and make sure the person that takes your order knows that your food canNOT touch ANY gluten if you’re super sensitive. The foods are prepared in close proximity. We have 3 locations in Middle Tennesse – Nashville, Franklin and Murfreesboro. Check out all the other locations in case you’re traveling.

keep on livin’

katie

 

Matteo’s Pizzeria : ) May 3, 2009

Matteo’s in Cool Springs offers gourmet GF pizza!!!

I fould Matteo’s after searching the Gluten Free Geek’s website. His review of Matteo’s was not very good, but I couldn’t help but try it! My husband and I were both quite satisfied.

They offer 8 and 10 inch GF pizza’s with toppings at 50 and 75 cents respectively. Not only are the prices good ($6.95 & $9.25), but they actually tasted GREAT! I had the 10 in. with italian sausage, garlic and mushrooms, and my husband had a 10 in. with sausage, black olives and onions. Both were fantastic! I’m not gonna lie… you can tell it’s GF crust, but it’s far better than any GF crust I’ve made from the store. And of course the factors of convenience and price win out!

I DEFINITELY recommend Matteo’s and I look forward to future pizza parties with friends! I also recommend stopping by Stogie’s next door to grab some GF beer or cider. Check out this facebook group that has more info about GF beers.

ENJOY!!!

 

Swanky’s Taco Shop : ) May 2, 2009

Swanky’s has two locations in Germantown and Franklin and has a few delicious gluten-free options.

Unfortunately the corn chips and tortillas are fried in the same oil as the flour tortillas, but I spoke with the manager and he assured me that any seasonings they use are all natural and do not contain gluten. He also suggested that GF customers make sure they let a manager know of their needs. They can put foil on the grill and use soft corn tortillas to ensure that your meal is safe.

Don’t go for the chips and salsa or hard shell tacos if you have a serious allergy, but if you really need a soft shell taco or quesadilla, I would definitely recommend Swanky’s. It’s better than your standard burrito/taco fast food restaurant, and the management communicated a sensitivity to people with a gluten allergy.

Interesting side note: Our waitress was only vaguely familiar with the allergy. We were discussing it with her and she mentioned that she’d heard of it when she worked at Outback Steakhouse. She said that the managers there just gave her a menu to pass out, but never explained the allergy to her. So, take caution when eating at Outback! They do have many GF options, but there are things to look out for even on that menu, and apparently the wait staff isn’t completely educated on the allergy.

Check out Swanky’s website to view the menu, find locations and to check out all the great events they have going on.

TIP: Inform your server that you want a RESPECT card. With it, you can earn a free meal after you’ve spent $100, but you HAVE to ask!