Every once in a while, when I think I've said enough about being gluten free and that I have nothing new to add, someone comes along and thanks me personally for my lists and for sharing my story. This gives me the incentive to reach out again and say 'Hello there friends and wheatless people!'
It's been a grand summer of networking, connecting and brainstorming. Recently, I had the opportunity to watch a number of Fringe Festival shows and review them for PLANKmagazine
This put me on Granville Island where the bulk of the playhouses and BYOV's are. Being on the 'island' (which of course is not an island at all, but more of a peninsula), and being gluten free and hungry are a bad combination. I was sorrily disappointed by the lack of options I found there. I used to think you could go to the Public Market and find just about any kind of food, whether it be prepared or ingredients for your own meal at home. There are few actual restaurants, bars and cafes there after all. This was a stark reminder of how we should always plan ahead for our meals. I do recommend Agro Cafe on Railspur Alley if you have the time and cash to spend, as the chef there was super kind once and made me a special gluten free dish.
Another not so great surprise was my visit to the Pan Pacific hotel Cascades Lounge. At first I was really happy to hear that they have a non-dairy substitute for the espresso beverages, (especially because I love a good cappuccino!) but upon closer inspection, I saw Barley extract on the ingredients list. The poor bar tender/barista, he was so nice, he went out of his way to retrieve the Soy beverage, and then I (almost screamed) wait! STOP!
Overall it was a tough afternoon, my mother's birthday included a complimentary Chocolate Ganache cake, which she and my step dad ate in front of me, while moaning how good it was. #notagoodmoment . Once again, there I was having only breakfast in my belly and no afternoon coffee to stave off the monster inside and having to deal with this scene . Some days are just 'bad hair' days.
Later, to celebrate, we went to dinner at a place called Transylvania Flavour where they had considerately prepared a separate chicken dish just for me, but my mother had neglected to tell them that on top of being Celiac, I am also dairy intolerant. The dish was bathed in butter, so I then had to watch as everyone else ate their droolicious looking meals laden with gluten, while I waited for them to prepare me another dish. Yup, just a bad hair day.
*Pictured above, these "muffins" at Panne Rizzo are both gluten and dairy free. Beyond that they are also only 2.99 each! Downside: I live on the other end of town.