Tag Archives: NYC

Eating Rice in Brooklyn

Last month I attended a social media workshop in Brooklyn, which was great because even when I lived in NYC I didn’t go over the bridge very often. It doesn’t hurt that this was the view from the office the workshop was in in Dumbo.

For lunch, the restaurant Rice happened to be just a few blocks away, and I’d been wanting to try it after seeing it pop up on a few blogs.

I started with a bowl of butternut squash soup, but it was really nothing to write home about. What is something to write home about were their veggie meatballs.

It takes a lot to make tofu taste indulgent, and not like health food. But this did it. I really don’t know how they make these things. I’m guessing they put the tofu and some kind of spices in the food processor, then reform them into balls, fry them, and coat them in this delicious sweet and sour type sauce.

If I would have known better I would have gotten something other than boring brown rice. Having black rice or sticky rice would have made it all the more delicious.

Locations in Nolita and Dumbo


NYC gluten free recap

Seeing as I ate my way through New York City the last time I was there – I still had a hodge podge of photos left on my iPhone expensive state-of-the-art special blog camera. So, besides my reviews of Rubirosa, Rice to Riches, and Gramercy Tavern, below are some of the other gluten free yummies I found when I was there.

“Orios” and eclairs at Risotteria in the East Village. Yes. I said gluten free eclairs. I also picked up a “Winkie” for my friend – which I tried a bite of and tastes nearly identical to what I remember a Twinkie to taste like.

The ultimate bar snack – roasted peanuts and garlic with rosemary at the John Dory Oyster Bar

Gluten free cupcakes at Terri

Macaroons at some place I can’t remember. But was happy to see them marked definitively gluten free.

Banana bread with chocolate chips from Babycakes

It always hurts my heart when Celiacs tell me they haven’t been to NYC. It’s a bonafide gluten free playground and every time I go things seem to get more and more delicious.

For more of my favorite places to eat in NYC – check out my NYC GFREE EATS page. All restaurants have the highly-coveted Anna stamp of approval 😉

Rubirosa NYC: Second best gluten free pizza in the city

I’ve had my share of gluten free pizza. And I still honestly think that I make the best crust right in my own kitchen using Namaste Foods mix! And I do think that Pala Pizza’s crust is the best in the city.

But, I have to admit that Rubirosa in SoHo has Pala and me beat on the sauce. Their vodka sauce is so delicious it basically makes you forget that the crust and cheese exist and want to get a straw and put it directly into a vat of sauce for your meal. That said – the crust and cheese were workin’ for me too.

See that saucy goodness?

Let’s back up for a second here though – Rubirosa has more than just gluten free pizza on their menu. They also have gluten free calamari, mozzarella sticks, and rice balls. Which I consider to be gfree delicacies – rare finds that kind of make you stare in shock at any menu that has them. They also have gluten free meatballs for you carnivores.

We tried to not go overboard though, so we started with a simple salad. (This was the same afternoon as Rice to Riches, so I was trying not to be a complete gluten free glutton).

Perfect salad – with fennel, radishes, and big slices of pecorino romano.

But let’s be real – it’s just a way to reduce the guilt before you inhale half of a pizza.

Gee, New York City really does know how to do pizza.

And just be awesome in general.

Any other favorite pizza places in NYC? I’ve heard that Keste is a favorite.

235 Mulberry Street
New York, NY

Vic’s Bagel Bar NYC does it again

Remember the last time I went to Vic’s Bagel Bar in NYC and nearly died of ecstasy from my gluten free everything bagel with smoked salmon cream cheese?

I certainly do. I couldn’t wait to go back the last time I was in NYC.

This time I decided to go in another direction and get a sweet bagel. So I started with a plain bagel and added peanut butter…

Then I decided to mix in bananas…

Then I decided, whattheheck, why not add potato chips too?

It’s stick to the roof of your mouth, crunchy, salty/sweet goodness. I forced myself to save half just so I could continue to eat it later.

This time they also were selling Tate’s Bake Shop chocolate chip cookies at the front, so I picked up a bag.

These were good, but I honestly really don’t like crunchy cookies, so they didn’t really do it for me. I ended up giving the package to a friend back in DC.

If I could give one gift to someone who has Celiac’s, it would be to take them to NYC and get Vic’s bagels.

Next time I’m getting a pizza bagel 🙂

36 Hours in NYC – Chinese food and Terri love

Over the last week I’ve been in and out of NYC for work, and tried to visit as many of my favorite places as I could. I didn’t quite get everywhere that I wanted to go, but here are a few highlights:

Terri Vegetarian – Flatiron

I’ve raved about Terri before, and since it’s right by my office I went there twice. They also recently created a menu that has all of their sandwiches reworked to be gluten free (just ask for it, they have it behind the counter). It’s basically just replacing any other fillings with their soy “chicken” strips, but still helpful to have.
I got the “Chicken” “Cheddar” “Ranch” wrap (so many quotation marks!) one time, and the Buffalo “Chicken” wrap the other.

I know that it weirds some people out, but I love Daiya cheese. It tastes like Velveeta to me, and I don’t see how that’s a bad thing. And the “ranch” dressing is really good, there’s a ton of flavor in it and I think I like it more than the bottled stuff.

Lili’s 57 – Midtown

This was a new one for me – gluten free General Tso’s shrimp! I haven’t eaten Chinese food like this since I was diagnosed, so it was a real treat. I can’t say that I really miss eating food like this, because it’s really heavy, but it was definitely delicious. And a side roll of sushi made it feel a bit healthier. They also carry Redbridge and have a full gluten free Chinese food menu.

Bluedog Cafe – Chelsea/Flatiron

I wouldn’t say that Bluedog caters to gluten free diners really, but they do almost always have a really yummy gluten free salad of some kind. This one was roasted carrots, butternut squash, and chickpeas. Holy Vitamin K.

Not pictured gluten free eats included a piece of cake from Mozzarelli’s, a bag of cookies from Babycakes, and a salad from the Birreria at Eataly, and a surprisingly fabulous bag of gluten free animal cookie from Duane Reade.

Being back in NYC sure did make me miss having all of my favorite gluten free places right around the corner, not to mention skylines like this:

I think that I can manage with my new DC skyline though. Nothing beats looking at this on your way to work every day.

Where would you go with 36 hours in the Big Apple? What are your “must-go” places in NYC?

Cookshop: NYC

One night in NYC, my boss took our team out to dinner at Cookshop in west Chelsea. Their menu looked great online, but I was even more impressed that they had a Meatless Monday special! Even though that menu wasn’t gluten free, I still appreciate the effort. I wish someone would start a Gluten-less Sunday or something.

I split the vegetable salad with my manager (sweet corn, cauliflower, fennel, carrots, radish, cucumber,lemon,mint). I don’t know what those little green things were on top, but I loved them.

The scallops seemed to be the favorite choice for an entree, so I went with them. Long Island sweet corn pudding, cherry tomatoes & arugula salad.

I love that restaurants in NYC can spin “Long Island sweet corn pudding” into being something trendy.

Really delicious. I could eat an ocean of scallops. Cookshop was a great choice for a mixed crowd of dietary restrictions – two of us don’t eat gluten, one doesn’t eat dairy, and there were plenty of choices for everyone.

156 10th Avenue

New York, NY 10011

Vic’s Bagel Bar: NYC

This week I was back in NYC for work, and was determined to fit in as many gluten free eats as possible. Even though Vic’s Bagel Bar was out of my way, the idea of being able to pick up a single bagel with cream cheese at a bagel shop, like any other “normal” person, was just too much of a lure to pass up.

And boy was it worth it.

That’s a gluten free everything bagel with about a tubs-worth of cream cheese.

Vic’s has a really cool concept for their shop – you pick a bagel, then pick a spread, then pick mix-ins. They custom make your spread, then make you a sandwich. They also have these neat looking things called “flagels” (flat bagels) that look like giant bagel chips.

I got a Vic’s Special – plain cream cheese mixed with smoked salmon, tomatoes, and scallions.

Talk about splurge. See that oozy cream-cheesy goodness? This bagel was something that I couldn’t believe I could eat. It was just like any other bagel I remember.

The gluten free bagels are kept on the counter in their own special area far from the regular bagels. It seems like their regular bagels are a hit too, since there were a few groups of cops that came in while I was there. And cops know a good bagel when they see one.

I got a plain bagel to take home with me, and it’s nestled safely in my freezer for a special birthday bagel breakfast coming up soon.

All of those varieties are gluten free: sesame, poppyseed, plain, and everything. I wish they had a cinnamon raisin one – que sera sera though. Carbo loading is sometimes necessary.

Vic’s Bagel Bar
544 3rd Avenue (Cross Street 36th St)
New York, NY, 10016

Terri: Meat and gluten free in Flatiron

Last week I wanted a full lunch one day, but something healthier than my old haunt, Mozzarelli’s.  So I stopped into a vegetarian place that I knew had gluten free wraps that I was eager to try.

Terri Organic Vegetarian is very crunchy.  They have a whole fridge full of super juices, and their menu is riddled with flax, quinoa, and hemp.

I do love that they try to put a spin on health food by making it sound like junk food (ie: buffalo “chicken” sandwich, “bacon” “chicken” cheddar ranch wrap).  There are a lot of quotation marks on the menu as well.

I ended up getting the hummus and avocado wrap, with added veggie “chicken”.  At first I wanted to order the tofu wrap, but one of the workers told me that it was not gluten free.  (This probably should be listed on their menu?)

Anyway…it was delicious.  The hummus was spicy, the veggie chicken added bulk, and the pickled jalapenos added a little zing.

My only complaint is that the wrap was over $8, but I did have half for lunch and half for dinner, so I guess it was worth it.  I’m looking forward to trying the quesadilla here!


64 W. 23rd Street

Grand Opening Field Trip: G-Free NYC

I managed to make it up to the Upper West Side today for the Grand Opening of G-Free NYC!  I needed some gluten free oats, plus I wanted to check out if they had any new loot that I couldn’t find at Whole Foods or the other natural stores I usually go to.

The store itself is pretty small, with a window seat, three freezers, a full wall of pantry shelves, and a table in the middle to house the baked goods imported in from Tulu’s.

The first freezer had desserts, including break-and-bake cookie dough, “Ring Tings”, cheesecakes, ice cream sandwiches, tiramisu, and ice cream.  The break-and-bakes and ice cream sandwiches were new to me, but with so many fresh desserts I chose to focus my energy elsewhere.

The second freezer had breads, including hamburger buns, bagels, and Italian bread.

The third had more bread, with frozen baguettes, buns, and English muffins.  The frozen baguettes are not something I’ve seen before, but at $7 and some change I decided to wait until a special occasion.

The pantry shelves held a couple more gems, including one of my purchases: individual packets of tamari soy sauce!  Usually I lug around my La Choy in my purse, but this will be much more convenient.  I’ve considered ordering these online before, but they only come in multi-packs, and who really needs 10 boxes of these?

I found another item that I considered purchasing online before in the pantry as well…Skinny Crisps!  They also had all four flavors on the counter as free samples, and all of them were wonderful.  Onion and cheese for savory-lovers and chocolate and cinnamon/sugar for the sweet-lovers.

Speaking of free samples… cinnamon rolls were out for the taking!

I picked up a carrot cake from Tulu’s for the train home, and an apple pie from Pi!  This things smells amazing and looks buttery and flakey, can’t wait to try it!  They also had potato knishes made by Pi, and some vegan cupcakes (which didn’t look that great to me – especially compared to the frosting perfection on Tulu’s).

I love that this store exists, that I could walk around and not be afraid to taste things, and not have to check labels.  I only wish that it was closer to my work or apartment!

My haul = Skinny Crisps ($7), Tulu’s carrot cake loaf ($3.95), Pi apple pie ($4.50), and 20 pack of tamari soy sauce ($4.95).

For a full list of the products sold at G-Free, check out their website.

I hope more people go to G-Free to support local business and the gf community!

G-Free NYC

77 West 85th Street (1,2, A, C, E)


For reals gluten free – Pao de Queijo/Pan de Yuca

One of the benefits of living in such a diverse neighborhood is getting introduced to new foods I wouldn’t have tried or known existed before.  Like Pao de Queijo, or Pan de Yuca – otherwise known as “Cheesy chewy bread of amazement”.  This bread tastes like it’s full of gluten because it’s so chewy and moist, but it’s made entirely of yuca flour and has been forever and ever.  This is one of those things that make you say, “These are gluten-free?”…”For reals?!”

One disclaimer is that normally these are not made in a dedicated bakery, so there is a chance for cross-contamination.  So, those with extremely sensitive allergies might want to steer clear.

Apparently these little babies have been getting some press lately (see Brazilian Cheezy-Poofs on Serious Eats).

Around Astoria I know two places that have them, the aptly named New York Pao de Queijo on 31st Ave and 30th St and La Casa del Pan.  At New York Pao de Queijo they also have fillings for the bread like catupiri (a soft cheese), ham and cheese, caramel (?), and guava paste.  Plus they have flan and rice pudding for dessert.

At La Casa del Pan they have the normal Pao de Queijo and ones that are shaped like bagels, plus arepas and a window display of pre-cooked bacon.

In the city I know they have this bread at Big Booty Bread Company and a lot of other places, as chronicled by Always Hungry.  I think I’ll have to take a field trip to Churrascaria Plataforma on 49th St. sometime soon.

Get these on your table and in your tummy as soon as possible.