A few weeks ago Triumph Dining asked me if I would be interested in reviewing either their Gluten-Free Grocery Guide or their Gluten-Free Restaurant Guide. My first thought was “hell yeah, free stuff!” Then I had to make a decision, which one to get?
As much as I would have loved the restaurant guide, being on a broke college student’s budget, and being single, it would have done me little good. I don’t eat out often, and honestly, I’m terrified of eating out. I hate that uncertainty that when you go to a restaurant and order off their “gluten-free” menu. Will my meal be cross-contaminated? How educated is their staff on gluten-free dining? Do they have a separate gluten-free prep area? I know these are all questions you can ask the staff, but will they have the right response, or will their response lead to me walking away hungry? Unfortunately, you can’t tour the kitchen of every restaurant you go out to eat at, so these questions will always be in the back of my mind.
So I did the practical thing and asked for the Gluten-Free Grocery Guide…and it’s great! The beginning has a guide to choosing your grocery store, what areas in the grocery store to avoid to avoid cross-contamination, and even a guide to what the Food Allergen Labeling and Consumer Protection Act covers. They even have a symbol bank for what they use to label things with potential cross-contamination, companies who test for gluten levels in their foods, companies who use a gluten-free process, or a dedicated facility, and finally a symbol for companies that do not regularly update their gluten-free information.
From there they break everything down by grocery aisle; dairy, bread, baking, beverages. They include everything from condiments to beer! They have a fantastic section on candy, which is a weakness of mine. There’s a fairly comprehensive list of other snack foods, which always seems to be the hardest thing for me to buy.
My favorite thing about the book is the quick reference guide in the back. We’ve all been there reading labels, come across something we’re not sure about, and stood in the grocery store while we quickly tried to Google the product or specific ingredient to see if it was safe. This gives a list of safe ingredients that we may not recognize, or be sure about when we first read them.
I definitely am grateful that Triumph Dining thought highly enough of my blog to send me a copy of their book to review. I suggest going out and buying one as a great quick reference guide. I’m tempted to go buy the restaurant guide, maybe it will give me less anxiety about eating out.
Also, check out their other cool products! They have two different baking guides, as well as these nifty little gluten-free dining cards. The dining cards have specific instructions on what is and is not gluten-free, as well as a warning about cross-contamination. The cards are available in laminated cards that cater to 10 different cuisine types, or disposable cards that are written in English and Spanish, and are focuses on American Cuisine.
You can buy all of Triumph’s Products and check out their blog at the link below!