I am constantly amazed at all the choices we gluten free gourmands have these days. If you have been eating gluten free for more than a couple of years, you know that the products have quadrupled in both quantity and quality (thank goodness). Not only that, but at most restaurants the servers will happily inform you what is gluten free and what is not, or find out from someone who does know. I still get blank stares occasionally, or even worse, fake smiles that tell me this person doesn’t know and doesn’t care, but not in Redmond, where I feel very lucky to live. Redmond has both a huge Whole Foods, and PCC, both with large gluten free selections, (I find Whole Foods’ section especially easy to navigate. I actually go to the PCC in Kirkland so I can’t speak to the one in Redmond very well, but I know it is there!) Besides the grocery selection at Whole Foods, you can also order a pizza made on gluten free crust, or a sandwich made on gluten free bread. They do say that they cannot officially guarantee them gluten free pizzas/sandwiches b/c they are made right where gluten products are made, but they are using gluten free ingredients. They also have a bakery where you can order a gluten free cake or whatnot if you do not see something already to your liking. Speaking of bakeries, the Flying Apron is just down the road from Whole Foods and it does indeed have a gluten free bakery. Not only is it gluten free, it is vegan so those with dairy and egg issues can rest easy. They have lunch items, loaves of specialty breads, baked goods by the dozens, and great coffee, all in an open cafe atmosphere with art on the walls and thick wooden tables to share a morning with your best allergy-laden friends. I’ve done it many times. This really is a place not to be missed while in Redmond. You’ll temporarily think you are on a European side street, or at least in Fremont where the first bakery/cafe still stands and operates. If that weren’t enough to get you out of your house on a rainy day, there is another restaurant dedicated to allergy free eating that recently opened called Graces 5. It has lunch and dinner every day of the week and looks like the kind of place anyone would enjoy, food-allergy-challenged or not. I haven’t been there yet, but it looks amazing with raw dishes, low sugar promises, and all of it gluten and dairy free. They serve meat too, so I might actually convince my husband and kids to join me~ bonus! Another gluten free place to check out is Taste of Amazing, a catering shop which also has premade meals and groceries to buy for walk-ins. It was formerly called Savory Moments and is behind the Sammamish Hot Yoga place and Pomengranate. In other words, it isn’t easy to find, but it is really quite worth it. They have many frozen and refrigerated meals, gluten free and not, which are all made right there. I went there today and bought stuffed artichoke bottoms, but they have a huge variety~ soups, quiche, lasanga, veggie sides, Indian foods, etc. The grocery selection is small, but if you are on your way home from work and need a quick meal (chef made) and a snack for the kids tomorrow, this is a great place to go. Besides all these great dedicated places, there are plenty of pizza places that now make gluten free crusts. To name a few: Frankie’s, Garlic Jim’s, Tony Maroni’s, and Romio’s. No one ever has to go without pizza delivery (how civilized). No one in Redmond anyway. If I am forgetting anyone, let me know. And please let these places know you appreciate their gluten free inclusions, it’ll keep those choices burgeoning as they have been, and keep us out of the allergy-dark-ages for good.
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