Sunday, November 3, 2013
Gluten Free DC Marathon Weekend
I am not a runner, as evidenced by the sticker Chris bought for me at the runner's expo:
Every place we ate over the weekend was really wonderful and warrant their own review but here's a quick recap and photos straight from my phone:
Shophouse Kitchen, a southeast Asian style restaurant. It's owned by Chipotle and while the set up is a similar concept to Chipotle the result is so different. Shophouse Kitchen's food is entirely gluten free, fresh, fast and truly one of the best meals I've had in a very long time. Authentic flavors made as mild or spicy as you like. I'd love a bowl right now. The green beans were spicy hot but really flavorful, the eggplant with basil was a mellow contrast and the cold rice noodles were a yummy, if messy, base. So far you can only find SK in the DC and Los Angeles areas but I'm hoping they spread quickly to Raleigh!
The marathon morning was sunny and perfect and I was able to watch some of it from our hotel room. As Chris' finish time grew near I headed up to meet him. I thought he made great time and couldn't believe he had energy to spare. We walked from the race down to the hotel and had a very brief encounter with Taylor Morris and his adorable girlfriend Danielle Kelly who had just run her first marathon in amazing time. They are one of the most inspiring couples you'll ever read about and it was an honor to get to say hello. Check the site, please.
After that we headed out to District of Pi for gluten free pizza. Chris had been here with Joe and Marc and Marie had visited, too. So I was the lone hold out. The gluten free menu is varied and includes lots of different options and it was hard deciding just what to get. We ordered far too much and enjoyed our pizza for lunch and again for dinner. The pizzas and salad were really good, but the caramelized onion dip and kettle cooked chips - something we never order - was so delicious. Creamy dip and warm salty chips - such a great combo. The leftover pizza was just as good cold at dinner time, the sign of good pizza in my book. =D
Macaron Bee after our pizza but they were closed before we could get over to the shop. DC is not an easy place to maneuver! Since I'd been in contact with Debby prior to our visit, I emailed my apology for not making it in when we got back to the hotel. We had been in touch since I'd written to see if they had any dye free macarons. (While a macaron is a delicious gluten free treat I am careful because many of them have food dyes which cause problems for us. There were several safe varieties at Macaron Bee!) Debby wrote back and told me she'd even set some aside for me on Sunday and I felt so bad for not getting there in time. Then she told me she'd be in the store Monday, their day off, and I could stop by! The shop is so cute and I loved the bee decor. Debby was as sweet as I imagined and had a lovely selection of macarons for me to choose from. I picked out a box for Marc and Marie and one for Chris and me. Even the packaging is perfect and makes for an even more special treat. The Earl Grey/Milk Chocolate, Expresso and Fleur de sel Caramel have all been perfect. Macaron Bee will be a must stop every time we visit DC.
Burger Bach in Richmond, Virginia while driving home from Maryland last month and they raved about it. The burgers really were as good as they had told us but the fries were out of this world. Whenever you can get gluten free safe fries it's a good thing, but Burger Bach has unique dipping sauces that take them over the top! While you can get ketchup, you can also try a variety of sweet and spicy dips. We chose a cilantro sauce (right) that was creamy, mild and flavorful and a jalapeno remoulade (left) that had just the right amount of kick. We inhaled them.
I'd like to visit every one of these spots again and I bet you'd enjoy them, too.