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Gluten Free in Calgary & Western Canada

Not exactly a mainstream topic to start with, but living with a Celiac I think it may be worth it to start a thread here.
If you know of any Celiac friendly places, please reply. We moved back to Calgary from Las Vegas, where GF options were everywhere.

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  1. Since you are also asking about Western Canada, and not just Calgary, I will say
    that in Edmonton, you can ask for gluten-free meals at:

    Normands
    Dish and the Spoon
    The Creperie

    I'm sure there are more, but those are the restaurants that I know that have worked for people with celiac, especially those who have severe reactions to cross-contamination. Also, the catering company called A Cappella (Edmonton) will cater a gluten-free event. Other restaurants that seem to work for people with celiac are Indian (including the buffets), but avoid naan bread and a number of the desserts; Vietnamese - check ahead, but in many of the restaurants, the vermicelli bowls and rice dishes are fine, and some will substitute a salad roll for a spring roll (for extra $).

    Kinnikinnick Food Inc. (gluten-free) has a main food store and bakery in Edmonton, but I think other retailers may carry their products elsewhere.

    You should also check with the local (i.e. Calgary) celiac association, because they will often have a recommended list of restaurants and food places to shop.

    3 Replies
    1. re: Libertycafe

      Also in Edmonton, Sorrentino's and Sceppa's offer gluten-free pasta.

      I'm sure you know this already but in any Asian restaurant be careful because if they use soy sauce instead of wheat-free tamari then you'll have reactions. You won't always be able to tell just on sight either, as I know some places may use soy sauce to marinate the meat. Some sesame oils have soy sauce added to them as well.

      1. re: Libertycafe

        We will visit Edmonton in August and your recommendations are great.
        Kinnikinnick we knew, but the rest, new. Great, thanks.

        1. re: Libertycafe

          Wow. The Creperie sounds like a nice place. On the schedule for our trip in August.
          Thanks.

        2. Welcome to the Board & to Calgary worldwidestuff :)

          Calgary resources and stores: http://www.calgaryceliac.com/ <--their site has a list of GF friendly restos put together by members

          Community Natural Foods: http://www.communitynaturalfoods.com/

          Earth's Oven: http://www.earthsoven.com/ 2133B - 33 Ave. S.W.
          Marda Loop, also available at Community Natural Foods...

          Great Canadian Superstore: Has a decent selection of GF products in their natural foods aisle.

          Lakeview Bakery www.organicbaking.com 6449 Crowchild Trail South (south end of Lakeview Shopping Centre) their GF products are also carried at Amaranth, Community Natural Foods, Co-op and Planet Organic.

          Kinnikinnick Foods: http://www.kinnikinnick.com/

          Planet Organic: http://www.planetorganic.ca/ourstores...

          Hope that helps get you started :)

          2 Replies
          1. re: maplesugar

            Thank you very much. Great suggestions.
            Since back from the States (and before) we dined at Fleur du Sel and they are great with GF options. Even Gluten Free bread on request.

            1. re: maplesugar

              Just a note to this: Earth's Oven is no longer in Marda Loop, though a quick search still gives that address.

              They are at 2066-18th Ave NE, the website is up to date, but all other listings still show the old address.

            2. Hi,

              In response to your above question....you have to try "A Tasty Menu - Gluten Free Gourmet" - Calgarys only 100% gluten free restaurant. They have menu options of Burgers (The best in the city), Pizza, Sandwiches and a great assortment of entrees. Breakfast Menu available on Saturdays and Sundays. Phone: 403-235-0031 for more information.

              Hope this helps!

              1. Yes, we have been to that resto a few times. My wife is the Celiac and she likes it. As for me, take it or leave it. Either way.
                For GF food however, you cannot beat the feeling of safety when going there. That's the common thread I hear from Celiacs.

                1. My dad is a celiac so we've tried a new places listed on the www.calgaryceliac.com site whenever my parents are in town for a visit.

                  Joey's (Eau Clair): Joey's offers a specific gluten free menu, that lists items they can guarentee don't have any gluten in them. Selection was relatively good and even included items with BBQ sauce (somewhat uncommon to find since many sauces include malt vinegar and malt vinegar can effect celiacs). Service was very friendly and professional with the waitress confirming gluten free status with the kitchen...and they get bonus points for offering a dry cider (Strongbow) on tap, Dad's bev choice now that he can't drink beer. Overall a really pleasant experience and best of all no headaches or gastro-distress the next day.

                  Big Fish: No specific gluten free menu offered at Big Fish, but the waitress confirmed every order with the kitchen. Gluten free items we tried included pork and crab with bearnaise sauce (no cheater flour to thicken), beautiful pan fried pickerel (but with an only so-so bacon and spinach topping), yellow curry mussels (great), and corn shelled fish tacos (ok). Service was helpful, friendly and reserved, and we all loved the comfortable neighborhod feel.

                  El Sombrero: Ordered the house special, but I can't remember if they had to make any substitutions to avoid flour tortillias. They were a little unsure about the communication with the waitress, but had no problems in the end. Good food, great atmosphere, live music, and even if you can't drink Coronas you can still have tequilla.

                  Breakfast stops included Diner Deluxe, Cora and Ricky's, and all places were able to accomodate (eggs, bacon, hashbrowns...no toast, pretty easy).

                  Only problem stop was a dinner in Brooks at Egan's Irish Pub. Wait staff didn't really seem to understand what might have wheat in it (like croutons in a salad) and despite our best efforts, something with gluten managed to get through (malt vinegar in a steak marinade we thought).

                  1. In Vancouver, I know that Rocky Mountain Flatbread has a gluten free crust and I think they have one in Calgary too and Panne Rizo www.pannerizo.com (Vancouver) is a bakery/cafe where you can find an assortment of baked goods including breads and cakes that are gluten free.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: selena03

                      Chutney Villa in Vancouver also has a number of gluten free options including special meals on Mon and Tues.

                    2. Well, if you ever make it to Winnipeg, Manitoba, "Eat! Bistro" can do gluten free (call ahead). And I think the Moxie's chain can too.
                      I think many of our local run restaurants can and are willing to do gluten-free on request. I believe many places, including chains, can on request these days.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: notjen

                        The problem is, many places that should be able to accommodate a celiac aren't entirely sure what has to be sub'd or eliminated.

                        Also, many places don't properly consider the sensitivity to cross-contamination and all the possibilities which can cause a severe reaction (such as fryers).

                        Not using flour is only the first step.

                      2. The Coup on 17th Ave has a lot of really good gluten-free options. They understand gluten allergies and they can tell you which items on the menu definitely do not have gluten / are not cross-contaminated.

                        That said, I do not personally have a gluten sensitivity - but I do know that my friends who are Celiac enjoy and are comfortable with going to the Coup (which makes me happy, too!)

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: Calgary Geek

                          Hmmm, I'll mention The Coup... as a dedicated carnivore, it never occurred to me, but makes sense that they would have many GF options.

                          Does anyone have any other information on A Tasty Menu re-opening? I did a quick search and couldn't find any news... the phone still just rings and there's no mention on their website.

                        2. Nicks' of Nicks pizza, has a son Tim (Tim's pizza) and he makes AMAZING GF pizza crust! He sells his ready to bake pizzas at farmers markets over the summer, but I think you can also get them from both Nicks' steak house / pizza locations, and I also know that Tim is planning to open a Deli in the NW soon.

                          1. Milk Tiger Lounge, a great neighborhood bar in Mission, has changed their menu to 100% Gluten Free items.

                            They even made the news:

                            http://www.globaltvcalgary.com/video/...

                            -----
                            Milk Tiger Lounge
                            1410 4 St SW, Calgary, AB T2R, CA

                            1. Amaranth in Calgary has some great gluten-free authentic mexican entrees in their freezer section. I haven't tried any but they do look awesome, even frozen :o)