As someone who’s always out and about, I’m constantly asked to name my favorite restaurants, the hottest new place to get a drink or some secret spot to impress a visiting guest. Hence, the “Ask Mar” series where I share these Q&A’s with the rest of ya’ll to hopefully help you out, too. Today I had a colleague contact me, looking for gluten-free restaurants near the Santa Monica Pier. Here’s what I had to say …
Need to pick your brain real quick: My friend is in from NYC and she’s taking her daughters to the Santa Monica Pier tonight. Where do you recommend they eat that’s not too expensive? By the way, my friend and one of her daughters are gluten-free so we have to make sure it’s somewhere they can go.
I was about to rattle off a whole list of places (no, Bubba Gump was NOT one of ‘em) but then you went & threw in the gluten-free wrench! Okay, so ur not gonna want to do anywhere on the pier itself anyway, unless it’s The Lobster, which has some good options (and really good views) but it’s on the pricier side of things.
Hold on a sec. OK, now that I’ve looked at my 18 Spots to be Gluten-Free in LA & OC list (I love referencing myself) I would have to say The Misfit — they have tons of gluten-free options including gluten-free mac & cheese!!! And if it’s something that’s not gluten-free, just ask chef Bruce & he’ll do his best to make it the way you need it. I always do veggie stuff when I’m there cos they use so many fresh farmers’ market ingredients, but they have tons of other options — sliders, salads & awesome fried chicken. And it’s not $$$!
True Foods – omg lovez this place. food is sooo good and so eclectic. their kitchen is not totally gluten-free, but their entire menu is clearly marked with “gf” for all gluten-free items, most of which are my FAVORITE dishes: spaghetti squash casserole, turkey bolognese, panang curry (omg to live!), veggie crudite, herb hummus (just get it w/o the pita -it’s so ridiculously flavorful w/the olive oil, onions & olives you can just dip your crudite in it). seriously, this place is great.
Also, there’s Catch @ Casa Del Mar – they recently launched an entire gluten-free menu. Food is more expensive, but hey, those views are priceless.
See you later!