Gluten Free crab cake at Thyme Restaurant

Chef Tom Costello

Are you GF? If so, Celiac/allergic/sensitive? What made you realize you had an issue with gluten? 

Yes, I am gluten free after being diagnosed with Celiac disease. I did not realize I had Celiac at first, but I had the majority of the common symptoms such as fatigue, vomiting, bloating and all of the GI issues that go with the disease.

As a Chef (Thyme Restaurant) and constantly surrounded by food, how hard was it for you to adjust to the GF lifestyle? 

You would think it would be difficult to adjust since I’m surrounded by food all day, but that actually made it easier since I have so many other options to choose from in the kitchen. The main culprits are pizza, bread and pasta so finding alternatives to those was key for me and is much easier with the many options! Plus, being a chef, I can whip something up easily that works with my limitations.

 I love how you point out GF options on your menu! Has this new feature been a hit with customers? Are you finding that people with no gluten allergy/sensitivity are opting for gluten free dishes, too?    

I wouldn’t say that indicating GF items has been a huge hit, per say, but including this new feature on the menu has made my regular customers more aware that gluten free food, including some of their favorite, previously not GF dishes, is both abundant and delicious. While the menu is over 90% GF, I have noticed that people without a gluten allergy are still opting for the gluten free dishes.

What kind of training does your staff go through regarding allergies? 

We do not have any flour or breadcrumbs with gluten at Thyme, so that makes it easier for my staff to answer questions regarding gluten allergies. They’re also very aware of items with nuts and understand what gluten can do to someone who is allergic/Celiac/sensitive.

Favorite GF item on your menu?

My favorite gluten free dishes on the menu are the crab cakes and the eggplant parmigiana.

Future gluten free plans at the restaurant? (ie- expanding to dessert/beverage, hosting GF events etc)

The majority of our dessert menu is gluten free already, we’ve started serving gluten free vodka, gin and beer, and I’ve even hosted a gluten free cooking class, with the next one to come on December 1st. I would really like to start hosting gluten free wine pairing dinners in the future, as well, so stay tuned!

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