Even Celiacs Can Share Plates at Son Vida!

Visited In: June 9, 2013
Gluten Free Menu: Yes
Server Knowledge: 1/2
Server Attitude:
Variety of Gluten-Free Options: 1/2
Overall Gluten-Friendly Rating: 1/2
Price Range: $15-$30 per person, plus drinks, tax, and tip

A few weeks ago, we decided to have a last minute dinner date with some friends, only to discover that many places in the Bedford area are closed Sunday. (Who knew?) Son Vida seemed like the best choice, so we all met up there.

The first thing that I saw when I walked in was a sign advertising Sangria Sundays (which means sangria is half price), so that got things off to a good start. However, once I saw the menu and the server explained the concept, I was a little bit concerned. Their menu is focused on small plates, so everyone orders two or three dishes each and then the table shares them. We had a table with a Celiac, a vegetarian, and two meat-loving men – I couldn’t see how sharing plates would work.

Our server normally works at Hamachi Mura next door (which offers sushi and Thai dishes), and was just filling in a shift, so she wasn’t very familiar with the menu and the gluten-free options. This led to lots of questions from me and many trips back to the kitchen to talk with the chef for her. She also found a gluten-free menu, which made the process much easier. (They also have a garlic-free menu, which I thought was interesting.)

The gluten-free options are pretty straightforward, too, which also made it easier. Things containing gluten were pretty obvious: handmade pasta, flat breads, focaccia, and deep-fried items. (Everything shares a deep fryer, so even non-breaded deep-fried items, like the Papas Fritas and Patatas Bravas, are out.)

We ended up deciding on the following items:

  • Trio of dips
  • Asparagus (both with Serrano ham and without)
  • Honey garlic chicken
  • Greek meatballs and lamb meatballs
  • Seared scallops
  • Assorted plate (with various cheeses, Serrano ham, red peppers, and olives)
  • Stuffed ravioli
  • Caprese salad

Everything was gluten-free except the dips (which were served with pita bread) and the handmade ravioli. (Our server did offer to bring by veggies for the dips, but the bread had already been dipped in it, so I passed.) It was a really interesting meal. Things arrived at the table randomly, so we had fun digging in and trying everything out. The separate dishes made it easy for everyone to choose what they liked. Everything was delicious, except for the lamb meatballs (which were overcooked and dry). It was so nice to be able to share dishes with friends!

I was ridiculously full by the end of the meal, so I skipped dessert and had more sangria instead! (They do have three gluten-free desserts, however: panna cotta, crème brulée, and crème caramel.) I was glad that I skipped it: everyone else seemed underwhelmed by their choices (a lemon-raspberry crème brulée and a brownie with ice cream.)

Overall, everyone had a great time and we all agreed it would be fun to do it again. It would be nice to see some additional potato options, and perhaps even some bread options. (I’m thinking of Schoolhouse Gluten-Free Gourmet focaccia rounds, in particular, although it might be an expensive endeavour.) If you’re looking for something different  I’d highly recommend Son Vida’s small plates.

Son Vida
540 Southgate Drive (Bedford South)
Web Site: http://www.sonvida.ca/


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  1. #1 by Litera-Leigh Addicted on June 26, 2013 - 12:40 pm

    I’m writing an article (for my journalism class) about Gluten free lifestyle, the rise and the expense. I would like to get your perspective as a local blogger. Contact me at my blog, or by email at ashleighcbeaudoin@gmail.com

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