In 2013, gluten was in the news more than ever. Brands like Pillsbury, Breton, Catelli, and Dempster’s started offering gluten-free items. Even Tim Hortons hopped on the bandwagon with certified gluten-free coconut macaroons! Celiacs also received support from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration with improved labeling and regulations, as well as a new gluten-free certification program from the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness and the Canadian Celiac Association.
To wrap things up, here are some highlights from 2013.
Best Overall Restaurant
This category was a really tough call for 2013, since so many restaurants now have so many amazing gluten-free options. After much deliberation, we chose 2 Doors Down as the winner for its knowledgeable staff; constantly evolving, gluten-friendly, delicious menu; and local focus.
Best Local Spot (Bedford/Sackville)
Best Local Spot (Downtown Halifax and Dartmouth)
The Wooden Monkey gets this award for the second year in a row, especially since they have locations in downtown Halifax and downtown Dartmouth. You can read a review of the Halifax location here. (We hear that the Dartmouth location is just as fantastic.)
Finbar’s gets an honourable mention for their new Cole Harbour location, which has the same menu as the Bedford location.
Best Chinese Food
We were delighted to find amazing, gluten-free Chinese food right here at home! Fan’s is a must-try if you haven’t been there yet.
Most Exciting New Restaurant
We’ve also learned that Zero8, the 100% gluten and allergy-free restaurant that we visited in Montreal, has closed due to prohibitive rent costs. However, their website says that they are fundraising to open a new location.
Several years ago, I tried eating at The Old Triangle in Moncton. They refused to serve me and embarrassed me in front of a group of friends. We’re happy to say that things have changed, and all five locations (including the clubhouse at Glen Arbour golf club) are now very gluten-friendly.
We tried the fish and chips at Catch of the Bay (part of Masstown Market) this year. We were amazed by how good the food was and how gluten-friendly their small kitchen is. They’re only open seasonally, so grab some while you can!
Best New Food Items
There have been so many amazing new gluten-free products in 2013 that it’s hard to choose just one. We saw new pastas, breads, crackers, soups, cookies, and more. Our winner for this category is Sabatosso’s certified gluten-free pizza (available at Costco). New gluten-free Breton crackers are a close second!
Today also marks our third birthday, so we’re having gluten-free cupcakes to celebrate! Gluten-free options have changed so much in the past few years. We can’t wait to see what 2014 has to bring!