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What? No Wheat?!

Hi all! Here's a tough one. My boyfriend found out he has a wheat allergy which cuts out lots of food options. I'd really like to treat him to something really tasty so he doesn't feel too discouraged about not being able to eat anything he likes.

The blacklisted items are as follows: mushrooms, cheese, anything that goes through a "molding" process, bread, anything baked, buttermilk, condiments, salad dressings, peanut products, soy sauce, vinegar, spices, beer, wine, alcohol, pickles, saeurkraut, anything fermented, truffles, chocolate, coffee, tea, fruit juices unless freshly squeezed, nothing too high in sugar...umm I think that's it!!

I want to be able to go somewhere as inconspicous to the sitution as possible (meaning NOT a raw food or purely vegan place). And good food! I feel like what I'm asking is mission impossible but any help would be so appreciated!! Thanks in advance!!

PS We are westside

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  1. Whole Foods has a ton of wheat free baked goods. Not good for me because they contain 1 of three things I'm allergic to -- Xanthan Gum. They also carry Red Bridge wheat free beer which is sweet but good.

    You need to double check some of the things on your list. For instance he can have vinegar just not malt vinegar.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Hershey Bomar

      Yes, we love WF! I've double checked the list from the dr's and I'm pretty sure its all vinegar. I know he can't have balsamic either or any salad dressings and he's staying away from sushi rice. I double checked the rest of the list too... and its still true! I know its crazy! Oh and no corn!

    2. that blacklist goes way beyond wheat! since he can't eat anything fermented either, he's also on an anti-candida diet, which is usually the protocol for a yeast/mold allergy. that's no fun. poor guy :(

      some random ideas:
      M Cafe de Chaya
      Jack Sprat's
      Inn of the Seventh Ray

      2 Replies
      1. re: goodhealthgourmet

        Yes! That's exactly what it is! Yeast/mold :(
        Thank you so much for your suggestions!

        1. re: Yes Please

          my pleasure - i hope you find something you can both enjoy!

      2. Thanks for all the replies so far, just checking back in hopes of kicking this post back up a bit.

        He can eat meat and veggies basically so maybe some help with restaurants like that? Grills and such? Fish and seafood is okay too. Thanks again!

        4 Replies
        1. re: Yes Please

          Not sure geographically where you have in mind but...

          Ruth's Chris - lobster, fish, meat, steamed broccoli, asparagus, baked potatoes, etc.
          King's Seafood
          Delis like Nate'n'Al's
          Eat Well
          Il Pastaio
          Eduardo's (great sides of chicken, beans, rice, etc.)
          California Fresh - chicken, eggplant salad (one of my faves)
          26 Beach - salads esp
          Ocean Ave Seafood
          Cafe del Rey
          The Palm
          Newsroom Cafe
          ...so many choices... as someone gluten and dairy free now, i find that almost any restaurant *can* accommodate, and most are all too happy to do so.

          1. re: Emme

            Thank you so much! A lot of those places are pretty close to us.

            It is just so much harder than we thought! It turns out nothing smoked or cured is allowed either, no rice and we gave up salad dressing for olive oil and lemon which is not bad, but we do miss vinegarette...

            1. re: Yes Please

              another thing i often do is ask to substitute vegetables for noodles in a pasta dish if it has something i like, and can be done gluten and dairy free (aside from the pasta).

            2. re: Emme

              Newsroom is a great call, i don't know *why* i always forget about that place!

          2. for an extremely casual meal, it sounds like many of the items served at SAMOSA HOUSE (indian vegetarian food) would work for him.
            skip the roti (flatbread).
            skip the raita (yogurt sauce served on the side).

            when they use cheese in a dish, it is homemade paneer which they make themselves and does NOT go through a fermentation/molding process.

            most of the rest of the food served there should be ok.

            1 Reply
            1. re: westsidegal

              Thank you, those are good tips! Skipping the bread is becoming more and more painful though!

            2. i feel your pain! Breakfast places should be OK to go to as long as eggs and potatoes are ordered, skip the toast. Haru sushi on San Vicente by La Cienega has brown rice! he can probably have sushi, just no soy sauce. Brown Rice is OK on this diet but not white, as white turns into sugar. also, double check and see if raw almonds are OK. i went through this diet as well and raw almonds were on the yes list.

              8 Replies
              1. re: Clyde

                Also, what about Real Food Daily? There should be items on their menu that will work for you there. And please look into the Brown Rice factor b/c that's what saved me while on this diet. Also, to this day i still eat brown rice pasta.

                1. re: Clyde

                  Do you know if they put any vinegar or sugar in the brown rice they use for the sushi? I totally forgot about brown rice sushi!! He just started eating brown rice I think yesterday and has felt fine. Its saving him too!

                  And yes, nuts are fine, just no peanuts or peanut products. We were really excited to find almond meal, which is basically ground up almonds as a coating to replace bread crumbs.

                  Thank you!!

                  1. re: Yes Please

                    i have no idea re: vinegar on brown rice sushi- that's an excellent point. perhaps you can call Haru and ask? they are SO friendly there, i wouldn't be surprised if they could actually make you some brown rice w/o vinegar- you never know!
                    another idea: whole foods has gluten free pancake mix- it's not as good as the real thing, but it gets me by on my fixings. perhaps that would be OK? the whole foods at 3rd and fairfax has a gluten free wall! check out the ingredients- there are a lot of items to choose from.

                    1. re: Clyde

                      Whole Foods is like our new second home! I'm not certain about all cooked, starchy foods. For now, we are going with the less processed the better! Working so far but not easy!

                      Thank you again! I really appreciate it! And any more tips are very much welcome!

                      1. re: Clyde

                        Hi! I did call Haru Sushi and they said that all their brown rice sushi is plain, meaning no sugar or vinegar added to the rice! I am so excited for this find! Thank you tons!

                        1. re: Yes Please

                          Yay!!! Also, check out the Deano's pizza in the Farmers Market on 3rd/Fairfax - the suggestion below by coffeebrownies. They can make you a rice crust pizza without cheese and just sauce and veggies if that's OK for the diet. oh and they can make any item on their menu gluten free- so they must have brown rice pasta there as well!

                      2. re: Yes Please

                        i'll wager that k-zo would be just fine accomodating you by making brown rice sushi/chirashi with no vinegar.

                    2. re: Clyde

                      if the boyfriend can have brown rice:
                      1) the last time i was at SAMOSA HOUSE, they served brown rice

                      2) K-Zo japanese restaurant will serve you brown rice if you request it and will make your sushi with brown rice upon request.

                      if the boyfriend can have lemon juice instead of salad dressing:
                      1) i'd call itzak hagadol, the israeli restaurant in encino to confirm that only lemon juice is used for their terrific israeli cucumber salad. i'd ask which of their other salads only use lemon juice. then when you go there, you could order skewered meat and know which salads were ok to eat. skip the bread.

                    3. My husband's gluten free diet isn't so strict, but we have very good luck at Japanese and Thai restaurants (their soy sauce is generally wheat free) . We have also brought our own pasta to Bella Roma on Robertson--but there is always a bit of chance hoping that the kitchen doesn't use the same utensils, etc. This is also the problem with places like Deano's Pizza at Farmers Market which makes gluten-free pizza but using the same equipment and ovens. (Of course between yeast and cheese that is a non-starter anyway.) Another tactic is to find a favorite little restaurant and become regulars--so that the owner and you can work out how to adapt to your BF's needs.

                      You will have to be cautious about gluten-free products, since many of them do contain yeast.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: coffeebrownies

                        Yes, this is a really tough diet! Really just meats and veggies it seems. Pizza, pasta, and soy sauce seem like a far away dream!! And unfortunately all the places we were regulars at are so not appropriate... shows how diet concious we were!! We are becoming regulars at Whole Foods though! Hopefully we can become friendly with another place soon too!

                        Thanks for the tip about being aware of cross contamination! I hadn't thought of that at all!

                      2. it would seem to me that every one of the huge variety of skewered meat, poultry, and fish dishes that they serve at shamshiri grill would work for you.
                        ask, and they will happily substitute plain brown rice for the basmati rice for a small upcharge.

                        i know that they primarily use lemon juice in their salad dressing, but i'm not positive about vinegar.. . .

                        you will need to refuse the bread basket, though.

                        1. Interim Cafe at 6th & Wilshire has the most super savvy gluten-sensitive chef on the West side... I can't eat wheat, oats, barley or rye, but I can eat a ton of original delicious dishes that Chef EJ makes for me. I particularly love the gluten-free French toast and "faux nuts" (kind of like donuts but healthier), also his "chocolate salvation"... looks and tastes like ice cream but is all organic and all vegan ... He makes everything from scratch... Tres cool vibe ... Check out the huge print of Jimi Hendrix burning his guitar... The owner took that shot as a teen (recently got an award for most famous rock photo of all time!) ... Happy gluten-free eating!

                          1. Thanks all so much for all the replies and support! I'm still reletively new to this site, but am loving it and the sense of community!

                            And just to clear up any confusion... I want to repeat that this is NOT a gluten free diet I am asking about. This is a very specific diet to yeast/ mold allergies, which makes it so not as "trendy" or as easy! With that said, thanks again for all the help. I am learning so much!

                            3 Replies
                            1. re: Yes Please

                              You might also try the new to Hollywood ... Pizza Fusion that offers lots of gluten free options. The pizza is gluten, but not yeast, free. You could talk to them about this though, and see if they'd be amenable to developing something....


                              1. re: Emme

                                i ate at pizza fusion (santa monica) yesterday. the pizza (original crust & cheese) was AWESOME, honestly. the caesar salad was boring though. i'll definitely return & they told me they will be offering delivery soon as well.

                                1. re: dotrat

                                  Caution here--I don't know about Pizza Fusion, but as I mentioned above in reference to Deano's--if the bakers use the same counter, peel, oven and cutting utensils, the pizzas will be cross-contanimated and will not be suitable for folks on gluten-free diets, who can be sensitive to even crumb-size contaminants. I would love to hear from others whether anyone has gotten a glimpse of the Pizza Fusion operations from this perspective? (Understanding that it is not going to work for the OP for now because of the cheese and yeast)

                            2. Folks-

                              Chowhound has a very narrow focus and that is where to find good food and drink. We are not a health advice or diet advice site, and in order to keep the discussion here within scope we have removed some off topic replies.

                              Please do continue to suggest where someone with the stated restrictions might be accommodated, but please, no discussion of suggested diet specifics or possible treatments for health related conditions.

                              1. I adore the Interim Cafe on Wilshire & 6th in Santa Monica. I happen to be gluten free so it's a treasure trove of good eats for me. I also have a number of friends on a yeast free diet and they are always happy when we meet at the Interim because there's something tasty for us all. It's become my home away from home. Can't recommend it enough. Good luck!

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: energydoc

                                  AND i'll vouch for the good taste of the food they serve even if one is not on a restricted diet.