|Visited On:||June 20, 2014|
|Gluten Free Menu:||No (some options listed on regular menu)|
|Variety of Gluten-Free Options:|
|Overall Gluten-Friendly Rating:|
|Overall Dining Experience:|
|Price Range:||$10-$20 per person, plus drinks, tax, and tip|
I’ve heard fantastic things about the downtown location of Morris East, and it’s been on our wishlist for quite a while. We had a chance to visit the Bedford West location last weekend and were not disappointed.
We arrived at the restaurant (located off of Larry Uteck Drive) at about 6 p.m. and were seated right away. (We were surprised at how quiet it was for a Friday night, but it picked up before we left.) Michael ordered a Morris East Fire Tap (a blend from Garrison Brewing, $6) to drink while I chose The Redhead, one of their signature cocktails ($10). We looked over the menu, which states that all pizzas can be made gluten-free with a $3.50 upcharge for the crust. We asked our server about other options as well as the size of the pizzas. All of their salads can be made gluten-free, as can their potato chip starter, charcuterie board, dips, and flatbread. Main meal options vary by the night, as does their gluten-free status (although a wood-fired steak is a permanent feature and can be made gluten-free).
We decided to start with the artisanal flatbread ($8 plus $2 for gluten-free bread) and share the Three Mongers pizza ($19 + $3.50 for the gluten-free crust) for our main. The flatbread arrived really quickly, as did our drinks. This dish uses the pizza crust from Schoolhouse Gourmet, topped with oil, tarragon, and a bit of cheese, all cooked in a wood-fired oven. A very nice, chunky marinara sauce accompanies the dish. I really enjoyed the flatbread; it was well flavoured, crispy, and not greasy at all.
Our pizza wasn’t far behind the flatbread. It was about 12″ and cut into six slices. Like the flatbread, it is also made with a Schoolhouse crust. This particular pizza was topped with gluten-free meatballs, sopressata, sausage from Sweet William’s, a sweet bourbon BBQ sauce, cheddar, mozzarella, and rosemary. The toppings were generous but not overboard like some meatlovers’-style pizzas can be. We each finished three slices quite easily and both really enjoyed the combination of sweet and spicy toppings.
I had already decided that I wasn’t going to get dessert, since the chalkboard menu only indicated one gluten-free item (chocolate pot de crème). However, they also offer three tarts that can be made with a gluten-free crust from (you guessed it) Schoolhouse Gourmet. I chose the salted caramel tart ($8 plus $1.50 for the gluten-free pastry) with a glass of red wine while Michael got a regular lemon tart ($8).
Our desserts arrived just as quickly as the other courses. Although we both enjoyed the flavour of our desserts, the caramel filling in my tart was quite thin, causing the salt to be dispersed unevenly and making it quite messy to eat. Despite that, I really enjoyed having pastry (and dessert).
Overall our dinner at Morris East was a success, although we would probably order fewer dishes next time. (I felt compelled to try as much as I could for review purposes, and because everything looked so delicious!) Although the gluten-free upcharge is pretty steep, especially if you order multiple gluten-free items, it’s well worth the cost especially since it supports a local business. We’re happy to have found a new Bedford favourite.
620 Nine Mile Drive (Bedford)
Web Site: http://morriseast.com/