Monday, June 12, 2017

{england: from tea to gluten free}


To wrap up our trip, I wanted to write about our tea experience and eating gluten free in England.

We had tea every day when we were there, but we decided to end the week by having high tea at The Orangery at Kensington Palace. From the gluten free scones to the tea to the service, everything was so lovely. I highly recommend going after touring the palace.


Celiac disease + traveling can be a tough combination. As someone who is very susceptible to cross-contamination, I take extra caution whenever I eat anywhere outside my own home—especially abroad. (For what it's worth, Dylan and I have eaten gluten free in Italy, Ireland, the Bahamas, Mexico, Sweden, England, Scotland, and France...so it's definitely possible.)

Our biggest tips are: 1) always do your research, and 2) always bring snacks.

From the Cotswolds to Oxford to London, eating gluten free in England was very easy. All of the restaurants we went to were incredibly accommodating. I actually loved that they always made note if the menu/item was "celiac friendly" vs. just gluten free, because there is a difference! I wish the US would adopt this strategy.

Prior to arriving we had a list of places that we knew would be okay for us to eat at, so we never truly "winged" it. I'm sure to others that would take the fun and spontaneity out of a trip, but we actually loved that we planned ahead. It kept our stress level down about possibly getting sick. It also meant that we had to stick with the more chain-y type places, but we didn't feel like it took away from the trip at all. I never once felt ill the entire nine days we were there and that stretch of time is rare for me.

I've mentioned a few places in previous posts, but here's a full list for those with celiac disease traveling to England.

Remember: if you are planning on going to a fancy afternoon tea in London, don't forget to ask ahead of time about a gluten free menu. We looked at a few different places (Sketch, Fortnum & Mason, The Orangery, and The Milestone Hotel to name a few) and each could accommodate those with celiac.

**Favorites

Flight
We flew United and reserved gluten free meals ahead of time (that were surprisingly tasty) but also packed snacks.

Grocery Store
Tesco has a great "free from" allergens section. We picked up oatmeal and fruit here and made it for breakfast each morning. (The one thing you can count on at any Airbnb and hotel in England is a tea kettle, so oatmeal was easy.) Having breakfast at our flat each morning saved us time and money.

London
Prezzo** (lunch/dinner)
Carluccio's (lunch/dinner)
My Old Dutch (gf dutch pancakes)
Beyond Bread** (bakery/lunch) - Our favorite place BY FAR. This is lame, but I actually teared up when I had the croissant. It tasted like the real deal and brought me back to pre-celiac days. The red velvet cake was also to die for.
Stables Bar (lunch/dinner/tea)
The Orangery** (high tea)

The Cotswolds
Salisbury | The Cosy Club (lunch/dinner)
Barnsley | The Village Pub** (lunch/dinner)
Moreton-in-Marsh | The Cotswolds Tearoom** (tea/breakfast/lunch)
Stow-on-the-Wold | Lucy's Tea Room (tea/breakfast/lunch)

Oxford
ASK Italian (pizza/lunch/dinner)
Jamie's Italian (lunch/dinner)
Organic Deli CafĂ© (bakery)

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