I’ll write more about it later, but to whet your appetite, here’s the press release:
Local Chefs Present First Taste of Gluten-Free Event in the US
Southlake, Texas, (August 30, 2010)- The North Texas Gluten Intolerance Group (NTGIG) and Gaylord Texan proudly announce the first ever “Taste of Gluten-Free” dining experience coming Sunday, September 19th, to the Dallas/Fort Worth area. The Gluten-Free Makeover: a Healthier You showcases 20 DFW restaurants that offer gluten-free dining options, over 25 food samples from gluten free manufacturers and advice from experts about the gluten-free lifestyle.
Gluten-free dining has been acknowledged by the National Restaurant Association as a top ten menu trend for 2010, and this event will showcase local establishments that are at the forefront of the gluten-free dining movement including: The Gaylord Texan, The Grill on the Alley, PF Chang’s, Carino’s, Italianni’s, Fresco’s, Blue Mesa Grill, Fish City Grill, Kozy Kitchen, Wildwood Grill, Garliq, Thai Papaya Garden, Taste of Spain Texas Paella, Chadra Mezza, Asian Mint, Palios Pizza Café and Wholesome Food Bakery. According to the Gluten Intolerance Group, 15 to 25 percent of consumers seek gluten-free options, both at grocery stores (such as Whole Foods Markets, Central Market and Sprouts) and when dining out.
PF Chang’s has offered a gluten-free menu since 2003. This year they introduced five new beef dishes which have been well received by the gluten-free community. “We have 28 choices on our Gluten Free menu and our guests have a lot of heart for all of the dishes,” states Laura Lasseter of PF Chang’s. “Our Gluten Free Chang’s Spicy Chicken and Mongolian Beef are two of the most popular and our gluten-free Mini Triple Chocolate Mousse dessert is a must try!”
Chef Daniel Winans, at the Dallas location for The Grill on the Alley, asserts that the Grilled Lime Chicken Salad is the most popular gluten-free item. Their gluten-free clientele is small but growing as are fans for his Flourless Chocolate Cake. At the Gaylord’s Glass Cactus Nightclub, Chef Mike Sammons notices an overall increase in requests from guests with food allergies. “We also see a lot of peanut, egg, soy, dairy and shellfish allergies. About a year ago we came up with what we call our allergen matrix. This allows us to capture the allergies of our guests, and with the use of a special program, print a menu for the guest that shows them exactly what they can safely order off our menu. This service has been extremely comforting to our guests with allergies.”
The field of culinary arts is just beginning to address this market demand as consumers continue to seek full flavor, satisfying menu options that meet specific dietary needs. This trend is good news to the three million Americans currently diagnosed with celiac disease, as well as an additional 30 million who have non-celiac gluten intolerance or wheat allergies and rely on gluten-free foods. While awareness of celiac disease is rising, an estimated 97 percent of those who have it remain undiagnosed.
“Celiac disease is an inherited autoimmune intolerance to gluten, the protein in wheat, rye and barley that causes damage to the small intestine villi. Non-celiac gluten intolerance is also an immune-mediated reaction to gluten but without intestinal villi damage. The symptoms for either type of gluten intolerance can vary significantly from person to person and affect every system in the body,” states Dr. Claudia Pillow, author of The Gluten-Free Good Health Cookbook and Director of the event. “The monies raised will help support awareness, educational programs, and medical research so that persons with gluten-intolerance can lead healthy lives”
The Gluten-Free Makeover: a Healthier You is Sunday September 19, 2010 from 4 to 8pm at the Glass Cactus Nightclub, Gaylord Texan, Grapevine, Texas. Tickets are $25 preordered and $30 at the door; children 12 and under are $10. For more information and advance ticket purchases go to http://www.northtexasgig.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
North Texas GIG is a branch of The Gluten Intolerance Group, also known as GIG, and is a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization.