Non-chain gluten-free local restaurants?

Gluten Free Donut.jpgUpdate: We've created a listing of Capital Region gluten-free restaurant options, based on all these suggestions.

Jennifer emails:

For most of the last decade I've gone out to dinner with the same group of friends every Thursday night. Last year one of those friends was diagnosed with severe Celiac disease, which means that even the tiniest trace of gluten in her meal leaves her in horrible pain for days. Because of that dietary restriction we've mostly reduced the restaurants we choose from each week to one of half a dozen major national chains, all of which serve more or less the same type of food. I'd like to bring a little more variety back to our weekly dinners, and so I turn to you guys.
Do you know of any independent, locally owned, and/or ethnic restaurants that can reliably make a Gluten-free meal? Preferably a place that has entrees in the $10-20 range and also offers vegetarian options.

The restaurant that pops into our heads right away is New World Bistro Bar in Albany -- we've eaten there with both gluten-free and vegetarian people and everyone seemed happy.

And be sure to check out the post Jess wrote a few years back about finding gluten-free options in the Capital Region (there were also some helpful comments).

Anyone have suggestions for Jennifer and her friends? Please share!

NWBB has advertised on AOA in the past.

Earlier on AOA:
+ Sherry Lynn's Gluten Free Cafe (that's where the donut above is from)
+ Eating gluten-free in the Capital Region
+ Xs to Os Vegan Bakery in Troy
+ The place to score gluten-free cupcakes


I would give Plum Blossom in Troy a try. Steve, the owner, is excellent at accommodating allergy issues. My lovely spouse is allergic to many things common in Asian cooking (shellfish, nuts) and has never been poisoned there. I wish we could say the same for many other local restaurants!

Make sure you talk to Steve and that he understands the needs of your group! Good luck.

Jose Malones in Troy is an excellent choice! The chef's wife (or sister, ...close family member...) has Celiac and the wait staff, cooks, and owner are all very accommodating. I eat there frequently and have never experienced any problems that would be caused by contamination.

Sherry Lynn's Gluten Free is awesome! The pizza is so good that even gluten eaters can't complain. The sauce, the crust, the overall taste....mmmmm! Oh! The grilled cheese looks and tastes just like a gluteny one.

The Point on Madison has a gluten free menu and knows how to answer questions about ingredients.

El Loco has a gluten free menu, too.

Our menu at The Wine Bar and Bistro on Lark is, and has been for quite some time 97% gluten free. The few non-gluten free items, other than the Chocolate Tart currently, can be made gluten free with the removal of bread related items. We offer gluten free pastas that can be substituted for the pastas on the menu. We have been very pro-active in addressing the intolerance of some people to gluten. Please give us a try and let your server know about your gluten intolerance..we will accomodate you to the best of our ability.

The Chatham House/Lipperia's (recently featured on Groupon) caters to gluten free folks and their food is divine. More in the $20.00+ entree range, however.

Laura hit most of the ones I was going to mention:)

I hate to be a Debbie Downer but I actually would advise against Plum Blossom - or else proceed with extreme caution. Most commercially available soy sauce contains wheat, making Chinese cuisine very tricky since most of it contains at least a little soy sauce. It can be done but to be honest, I just think it usually requires way too much effort.

Jake Moon's in Clarksville has also added some GF options and I can't say good enough things about the calamari at New World (or their grass-fed burgers with GF buns! Yum!)

Katrinella's is also extremely accommodating and delicious. They'll even let you bring your own GF pasta in and then cook it in a separate pot for you and serve it with a meal. It helps if you just call and give them a heads-up, which is true for a lot of places.

Oh, and this will sound funny but actually Topp's Family Restaurant in Rotterdam has great options too. Much of the staff is very familiar with celiac -- one of the waitresses has it herself -- and they've gotten great about making lots of options available. One of the last times I was there, I even got to try some of the new gluten-free baked goods they were testing out.

I'm going to put a little shameless plug in for my own blog too. I'm mainly in Chicago these days but there's plenty of Albany-related stuff on there too. Check out Yelp's gluten-free category too.

The Point has gluten free pizzas, which are delicious and several of the (meat) entrees are gluten free or can be made so.

There are a ton of great places! Some of these have already been mentioned but here are a few:

- New World Bar and Bistro is good and has excellent inexpensive sandwiches with gluten free buns
- Delmonico's has a gluten free menu.
- Wheat Fields in Clifton Park and Saratoga have gluten free menus that include pizza.
- El Loco has a gluten free menu
- Bangkok Thai Bistro has been very accommodating in our experience.
- Gluten free pizza is available at Benevento and 5th and 50 in Scotia, Just Me! in Albany and Nunzio's in Saratoga (if you call ahead), among other places
- Shane's Rib Shack in Clifton Park has a gluten free menu
- Wine Bar and Bistro
- Top's diner in Rotterdam, as well as 50 South in Ballston Spa
- We've had good experiences at both Bomber's. No gluten free menu but the staff is knowledgable. Wolff's, I'm not sure about the food but I know they carry gluten free beer.

I'd also like to put in a shameless plug for my blog - Kat's GF Kitchen. Lately I've been posting a lot of "Hey, you're not gluten free but someone you know is" guides. :)

Taste (reincarnated Dale Miller)

from Table Hopping "Of particular note: 80 percent of the menu offerings are gluten-free.

The menu is by Paul J. Ozimek, who is now executive chef after having run the kitchen for the past seven months, since the eponymous former chef decamped for Sperry’s in Saratoga Springs.?

Dinosaur BBQ has a GREAT Gluten Free Menu...I've had both good and bad experiences at the restaurant (depending on my server)!
I know you were looking for non chain restaurants but Chiptole is one of my favorite spots to grab something quick to eat!

I've gotten sick from everything I've ever eaten at Bombers. At Wolff's, they're pretty good about gluten-free because one of the employees - the lovely Melanie -- is part of the celiac club. Oh and Nunzio's actually has an entire gluten-free menu too - not just the pizza!

I forgot to also mention Van's. I

After dinner if you want dessert check out XOXO Vegan bakery in Troy. I dont know how they do it, but there VEGAN puff pastries are to die for.

I have a family member and a couple of friends with Celiac disease. I'll second the suggestion of Sherry Lynn's - they make really good pizza!

x's to o,s also does a brunch with gluten free options twice a month now. I had their gluten free pizza bagels the other day and they were great!

My bf is also a celiac and it is great to have these type of community sites to share this information.

Alot of places are previously mentioned but here are a few more with GF options:

PF Chang's
El Mariachi
sushi in general, we happen to love Hana and Shogun in Glenmont
The Wine Bar
Dino BBQ
Wine n Diner

Best of luck!

it's a bit outside the Capital Region, but Beardslee Castle in Little Falls, NY has been written up with Kudos by the Celiac Support Group of the Mohawk Valley - see their website The food and atmosphere are great (they've been featured on Ghost Hunters) and worth the trip for a special occasion.

One great restaurant that I didn't see mentioned yet is Circus Cafe in Saratoga. They have a wonderful gluten-free menu. The food is not only delicious, but the atmosphere is so fun! It's great for adults and children. Just make sure you get there early as ther is usually a wait for a table!

My Linh has a lot of gluten free options too!

Wheatfield's in Clifton Park & Saratoga - has gluten free pastas that are amazing

Quintessence offers a version of their pasta in gluten free, as well as gluten free toast with brunch

Thanks everybody for all the recommendations. I'll be sending this to all of my friends and I predict we'll be trying most of them over the next few months.

I will second most of the restaurants on this list. Particularly, Sherry Lynn's, the New World Bar & Bistro, and Wheatfield's. Also, like to make mention of The Factory Eatery in Ballston Spa, which offers gluten-free buns and bread for burgers and sandwiches.

I was SO exicited to go to Quintessence for the gluten free toast for brunch.... :(
When I asked about the gluten free toast they looked at me like I came from another planet
I'd call to make sure they have it in stock before heading out...

I believe that Make Me A Cake Next Door (, in Delmar, also offers some GF stuff, although they're a bakery, Perfect Blend ( is right next door and they may offer some GF items as well, since they're owned by the same guys. They're on Delaware Avenue.

Don't forget Anton's Greek Restaurant on New Scotland Ave. across from St. Peter's hospital. They can prepare sandwiches with gluten-free pitas. When was the last time you had a gluten free gyro or souvlaki?

DeFazio's Pizza in Troy now makes their own Gluten Free dough! They haven't updated their website yet, but it is mentioned in this article, as well as on their facebook page.

I recently ate at Tops Diner in Rotterdam after reading the positive review on here. Unfortunately, I would have to strongly disagree with the previous recommendation and advise against eating there. The staff is NOT knowledgeable about gluten AT ALL. Several of the waitstaff, the woman at the counter and a suited manager admittedly were not familiar with gluten or cross contamination. Turns out the cook could make one dish (yes, ONLY one) to be gluten free. The Mediterranean chicken was delicious, but I was sick afterward like only being glutened can make me. There are no other dishes, or options. No breads or baked goods as the previous comments suggested. A total disappointment :(

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