Traveling can be stressful enough without adding a food allergy into the mix. Some of us, myself included, pack our luggage full of so many gluten-free snacks that we may sacrifice a pair of killer heels for some GF bread “just in case.”
On a recent trip to the San Francisco Bay Area, I ended up packing my luggage with lots of gluten-free goodies…coming BACK, not going! The Bay Area is a shrine to food lovers everywhere, even if you’re gluten-free. Not only will you enjoy some of the most amazing restaurants in the country, you can almost guarantee that if they don’t already have a gluten-free menu, they definitely know how to accomodate you.
Get the skinny on some of my top 5 favorite places (in no particular order) I visted during a recent trip to the Bay Area – almost all have gluten-free menus or options!
Ok, so Oxbow Public Market is actually in Napa, but it’s a must-visit on any trip to the Bay Area. I stumbled upon it purely by happenstance, thinking it was a supermarket. I was pleasantly surprised to find that instead of a supermarket, it was a huge gathering of food stands of all varieties. Immediately as I walked in I noticed a sign over C Casa, a taco stand with some unusual combos, that said 100% gluten-free in huge letters.
There are tons of amazing places to snack at in Oxbow including wine bars, Italian food stands, ice cream, and more, but the two places I visited and loved were C Casa and Pica, Pica Maize Kitchen – both are gluten-free.
I have a weakness for Vietnamese food. If you’re like me, you NEED to add Zadin to your list. They have gluten-free options on their menu, including spring rolls, which I hadn’t had in the longest time before eating here. The pho noodle soups are incredible and full of savory, rich flavor that will leave you wanting more.
I’m kind of glad Mariposa is across the country from me because if I had easy access to it I’d probably go there every day and gorge myself silly. If you haven’t tried Mariposa products before, you really need to. They make fabulous artisan-style gluten-free breads and baked goods that are absolutely delicious. I was beyond obsessed with their donuts, so much so that I had to buy two packages! Mariposa is located in the fabulous Ferry Building, and if eating 100% gluten-free baked goods is not enough for you, be sure to stop by Blue Bottle Coffee and grab a yummy cappuccino.
Berkeley isn’t just a college town, it’s also an up and coming foodie city. Nestled at the foot of Berkeley College is Gather, a restaurant serving farm to table goodness. Their menu takes a unique spin from the norm with an aim to have a balance of 50% vegetarian and 50% meat and fish options to choose from. Menu items are clearly labeled to indicate which options are gluten-free and/or vegan. My favorite dish was the vegan charceuterie, which I consider a must-try, even if you’re a meat lover!
Bottomless Booze. Need I say more? Don’s serves brunch Tuesday through Sunday, and on their brunch menu is a bottomless booze option, where you pay for two drinks and can drink as much as you want after that until 3 PM. Pretty sweet deal, eh? As if that wasn’t enough, Don’s has some of the best Al Pastor tacos I’ve had and I’m pretty picky when it comes to tacos. Most of their menu is already gluten-free, but be sure to ask about specific items before you order.
Do you know of other great restaurants in the Bay Area that are gluten-free friendly? Share them in the comments!