Sunday, June 25, 2017

Mitsitam Native Foods Cafe Review

If there is one down side to working on the National Mall, it's that gluten-free food options are pretty scarce or quite a few blocks away. Because of the heat and humidity of summer in Washington D.C., I find the idea of a long walk for lunch rather unappetizing. 

After talking with colleagues, I have heard some pretty amazing things about Mitsitam, the museum cafe at the National Museum of the American Indian. With a menu showcasing indigenous food from the Western hemisphere, I guessed that the cafe would have several gluten-free options.

Mitsitam translates to "let's eat," which is a perfect name for this cafe, as it features several serving stations that profile cuisines by region. Diners can choose to sample foods from many traditions, and there are gluten-free food options at most stations. 

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Manos de Maíz Review

Of all the world's cuisines, Mexican food is near and dear to my heart because most of it is corn-based and gluten-free friendly. From tacos and guacamole to tamales and horchata, I love the diversity and bold flavors of Mexican delicacies. 

On the recommendation of coworkers at my internship site this summer, I decided to dedicate my Sunday to exploring Eastern Market, a wonderful menagerie of produce stands, artists selling their wares, and food vendors. 

I went mainly for the produce and art, but along the way stumbled into Manos de Maiz, a pop up vendor offering an 100% gluten-free menu featuring maizope. This delicacy features a thick corn tortilla layered with seasonal toppings. I have never encountered this type of food before, so was excited to try it out.

Friday, June 23, 2017

The Freshmobile Review

If I had to choose an official beverage of summer, limeade makes a pretty good candidate for the honor. I often associate this refreshing brew with street fairs and markets, and love how it perfectly blends sweet and sour.

While exploring around the colorful menagerie that is Eastern Market, a combined farmers' market and flea market in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of D.C., I wandered through the food vendors, not quite sure if any would be gluten and dairy-free. 

When walking by the Freshmobile booth, which was stocked with fresh fruit and veggies, I was offered a sample of their unique limeade, which is unlike anything I have tasted before. Impressed by the drink's refreshing flavor, I bought a full serving on the spot.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Veloce Review (CLOSED)

As of December 15, 2017, Veloce has closed its doors. I'm sad to see this GF neighborhood mainstay go away.

Gluten-free pizza gets a bad rap, and I think that reputation is partially justified. Most pizzerias that serve up gluten-free pizzas serve up soggy or cardboard-like facsimiles of the real deal and charge twice the price. After finding really good pizzas at a few pizzerias, I have shied away from rushing out to try every gluten-free pizza out there.

When a strong craving for pizza struck this weekend, I researched neighborhood pizza options and stumbled across Veloce, the fast casual cousin of Pizzeria Paradiso, a popular D.C. pizza restaurant. Promising quick-cooking pizzas that don't compromise on gourmet ingredients, I decided to pay them a visit. If it went well, I would have a reliable pizza chain, if not, I was prepared to walk away so as to not risk getting glutened.

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Brown Bag Review

There's so many great places to grab an affordable gluten-free lunch in Washington D.C. that it's totally an embarrassment of riches. The only downside is that most lunch places open up around the lunch hour. While this makes logical sense, I like being able to pick something up on my way into work so that I can have food on hand if my coworkers want to go out to a non-gluten-friendly place for lunch.

Fortunately, Brown Bag has set their hours to be a solution to my dilemma. Opening early in the morning, they serve up lunchtime eats so that commuters can beat the lunchtime rush.

Brown Bag promises the their fare is made fresh in-house using clean ingredients and scratch cooking technique. With gluten-free options such as noodles and salads, I was intrigued to see just how gluten-aware this cafe would be.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Soi 38 Review

Now that I am settled in to my new neighborhood in Washington D.C., I knew I wanted to find a good Thai food restaurant nearby because it was one of my favorite types of food. Whether dining in or getting take-out, I like to have several options nearby.

As I checked out local Thai restaurants, Soi 38 jumped out to me thanks to rave reviews I saw online and gluten-free markings on the menu. While many Thai dishes are naturally gluten-free, it's reassuring to see a restaurant proactively label which items are safe.

Soi 38 is located in the Foggy Bottom neighborhood and features cuisine inspired by Bangkok's night markets. With a blend of familiar favorites and fusion street fare and the menu, dining at Soi 38 promises authenticity and adventure.

Sunday, June 4, 2017

SKWR Kabobline Review

If there's one restaurant trend I can wholeheartedly get behind, it's the proliferation of fast casual "make your own bowl" restaurants that have popped up in and around Washington D.C. They make grabbing an affordable, healthy lunch easy, and coming many culinary varieties- Mediterranean, Indian, Korean, and more.

The latest of these type of restaurants I visited is SKWR Kabobline in downtown D.C. Offering a gourmet take on a street vendor staple- kabobs- SKWR has a menu that features naturally gluten-free and dairy-free options. 

SKWR's food is made in-house, and merges traditional and modern influences. Named for the traditional way of cooking meat- slow roasting over an open flame, SKWR makes ancient eastern eating approachable and fun.

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Thrive by Go Macro Review

As a student and intern, I know the importance of always having safe food on hand to avoid situations when I am stuck without a safe snack. Usually I always have a Go Macro bar (or two) in my backpack at all times, and love them for their clean ingredients, reduced-sugar recipes, and high amounts of plant-based protein. These aren't your typical bars that are candy disguised as health food- no, these have real substance. 

That's why I was super excited to see their new line of bars at my local Whole Foods Market. Called Thrive, these have the same short ingredient lists and plant-protein content, but are infused with ancient seeds and superfoods. Non-GMO, gluten-free, organic, and vegan, these are sure to please kids of all ages, and are an easy, delicious solution to your afternoon snack dilemmas.