News from Kyra of Crave Bake Shop

We got a bunch of news from Kyra at Crave Bake Shop in Lake Oswego. (Our Review)

Just so you know, we’ve started doing wholesale orders (so go into your local New Seasons or Whole Foods and ask them to stock our stuff…) :) That way you can get yummy cinnamon rolls and such without having to drive to Lake Oswego!

Also, I just wanted to let you know about a few upcoming events that we’ll be at:
This Saturday we’re doing the GIG fair.

ALSO, on November 11th, we’re doing a fundraiser at Bushwacker’s in Tualatin to raise money for the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation. There will be gluten-free food and hard cider for sale, and a raffle drawing with prizes such as concert tickets, vacation weekends, gift certitifcates, cookbooks and more! I’ve attached a letter (link to pdf) about our purpose with the CCFA, and also a flier for the event (editor’s note: huge pdf warning, but available here).

Additionally, we are doing pre-orders for holiday pies (Apple, Pecan or Pumpkin Spice) and they are 20% off if ordered and paid for by 11/18.

So there you have it. Your assignment is to attend the fundraiser and also to pester your local grocery to start carrying items from Crave Bake Shop.

News From Around Portland

We’ve got a bunch of news from various places around Portland…

GIG Holiday Fair is this Weekend

A quick reminder that the GIG Holiday Fair is this Saturday. See this post on Grain Damaged for more information.

Where: The International Fellowship Family
4401 NE 122nd St. Portland, OR (NE Sandy & 122nd)
When: Saturday, October 22, 2011 from 10 AM to 2 PM
Entry Fee: $5 per person, $10 per family, Kids under 12 free

Jensen’s Better Buns Now Available at New Seasons Deli

These are the same gluten-free buns that are currently available at McMenamins around town, as well as Dick’s Kitchen. We think they’re the best gluten-free buns around. Now you can get gluten free sandwiches at New Seasons delis.

Petunia’s Pies at New Seasons

Speaking of New Seasons, Petunia’s gluten free and vegan treats are now available at New Seasons. Petunia’s – Our Review

2012 GIG Conference Will be in Seattle

The Gluten Intolerance Group national headquarters are in Seattle, WA. The organization holds yearly conferences in different cities around the country, and has announced that next year’s conference will be held in Seattle. They’ve also announced that the format of the conference is growing from a “traditional program” into a Gluten-Free Health & Wellness Expo. Look for more details coming soon.

Harvester Brewing!


A local tipster alerted us that Harvester Brewing is setting up shop at 715 SE Lincoln St, just a stone’s throw from New Cascadia Traditional. Harvester will be a dedicated gluten-free brewery in Portland OR, and expects to operational and open in Fall/Winter 2011. We were invited to sample their beers quite a while ago, and were impressed. We certainly wish them well! Visit their Facebook page for more details.

Beware Cell Phone Phishing Scam

This doesn’t have anything to do with gluten-free, but it is about Portland. There are fraudsters sending text messages to cell numbers in Portland, trying to get credit card numbers out of them. Here’s the sort of text they’re sending:

BANK NOTICE:
Your CARD has been DEACTIVATED. Please contact us at XXX-XXX-XXXX.

When you call the number, an automated message asks for your credit card number, and if you enter it, then some scammers have your credit card number. If you get a message like this, be safe and call your bank using the number on the back of your credit card.

OK. Now back to our regularly scheduled programming.

Subscription Service

Just a quick reminder that a few months ago we added a way for readers to be notified when a new post appears on Gluten Free Portland. If you’re interested in getting these notifications yourself, please proceed to the Subscribe tab and sign up! (Please note that this is the same service, so if you already signed up, there’s no need to sign up again.)

Some Portland Links and Resources

This isn’t strictly gluten-free, but it is Portland-specific: Google has a new Groupon-like service, and they chose Portland as the first city to launch in. Today’s deal was a half-off coupon for Powell’s Books. Find the new service, here: Google Offers

There is a new blog on gluten-free travel which has some articles on Portland, here: Gluten Free Will Travel

A new blog on gluten-free beers and where they can be found, nationwide. They have a list for Portland.

Next resource is also not gluten-free, but is Oregon-specific: The Good Stuff NW blog by Kathleen Bauer, which covers foodie news, gardening, local farms, cocktails, and lots of other interesting things in Oregon. The whole left column of their blog is an events calendar, which is worth a visit in itself.

Speaking of events, and continuing with the “not gluten-free specific” topic here, we were contacted about a benefit dinner which is happening in September. They’re looking to get the word out, so tweet and blog post away. Rather severely edited for brevity, here is part of the press release.

Hillsdale Presents Largest Paella Dinner in Oregon – Proceeds Benefit Hillsdale Main Street and Neighborhood House

WHO: Hillsdale Main Street, a Program of the Hillsdale Community Foundation

WHAT: Hillsdale Paella Dinner – Paella Dinner for 300 People, Fundraiser for Hillsdale Main Street

WHEN: Saturday, September 10, 2011 – 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm

WHERE: Hillsdale Business District – Under the Big Tent next to Korkage Wine Shop, 6451 SW Capitol Hwy Portland, OR 97239

COST: $75 Per Person

Hillsdale Main Street, a program of the Hillsdale Community Foundation, is pleased to
announce its major fundraiser of the year – the Hillsdale Paella Dinner – benefiting both
Hillsdale Main Street as well as Neighborhood House. This will be a first year event, featuring Chef Ted Coonfield, with Chef Greg Higgins (from Portland’s Higgins Restaurant and Bar) and Chef Chris Biard from Sonoma, CA’s world class restaurant Auberge du Soleil as sous-chefs. They will be serving 300 people under a tent decorated to bring you to Valencia, Spain. Besides the paella itself, entertainment will include flamenco dancers and wine tasting.

Tickets and Contact: Hillsdale Main Street

We wanted to give a shout and link to Kelly of Stella Blue Photography, who is an amazing dog photographer here in Portland. Check the link to see some of her photos.

We’re going to toot our own horn, for once. Don’t miss our Gluten-Free Restaurant List and also don’t miss our gluten-free bread machine resource page.

Last, I have to apologize for being behind on our email correspondence and blog posting. Life has been very busy recently. Those of you who have sent us restaurants for our restaurant list, we’re working to get you added soon!

New Blog Subscription Service Available!

Thanks to a reader who suggested the service, we’ve added a way for readers to be notified when a new post appears on Gluten Free Portland. If you’re interested in getting these notifications yourself, please proceed to the Subscribe tab and sign up!

Gluten Free Controversy on Dr. Oz

We were notified that Dr. Oz was doing a segment on gluten free diets on his TV show today. Naturally, we had to tune in. Here’s the executive summary: If you’re sensitive to gluten, then you should probably stop eating it. 99% of the people who are gluten intolerant still don’t know it. However, the gluten-free diet isn’t necessarily healthy, and is not a good way to lose weight.

For the curious, you can watch the episode online here on the Dr. Oz website.

I wasn’t actually aware that anybody was touting the gluten-free diet as being great for weight loss. So that was news to me. On the show they did some product comparisons, and the basic gist of the matter was that gluten free versions of many popular foods are more caloric and contain less fiber. Of course, we ARE talking about a TV show here, so they might have just picked out the most egregious offenders, because that makes for good TV. At the same time, we’ve spent some words on this blog talking about gluten free products and health. Mostly it’s been me complaining about how most all gluten free breads are made of starch and rice flour.

I’ve said it before, and I’m sure that I’ll say it again. If I could eat wheat, I would. First off, there are some items that you can’t get gluten free. Like a good brioche, a divine sourdough, or good bagels. Second, there is a reason wheat has been cultivated and eaten by mankind for all time: It’s good for you. Whole wheat is high in protein, fiber, minerals and vitamins. It’s an aid to digestion, and has countless culinary uses.

The segment on Dr. Oz struck me as having a dual personality. On one hand, Dr. Oz kept talking about how gluten does cause inflammatory problems in people who are sensitive to it. He even went so far as to recommend that people who have inflammatory symptoms try a two week elimination diet to see if they might have a sensitivity. But then he kept bashing the diet as being unhealthy and fattening.

It was interesting to hear the list of health problems associated with gluten sensitivity. Among the items I heard mentioned were fatigue, inflammation, depression, anxiety, irritable bowel syndrome, and even heart disease and cancer. Also, they mentioned that the inflammation caused by gluten can increase the insulin in your body, which can lead to weight problems, among other things.

Also interesting, there is a one week diet plan on the Dr. Oz website, here. Also, he has a couple of pages on celiac disease and gluten, here.

In the end, I did appreciate the show, although I thought that it sensationalized the subject matter in a way that may not have been very productive. It is a bit of a double-edged sword. I wouldn’t recommend a gluten-free diet to anybody who doesn’t need to be on it. BUT, for those of us who do, it’s truly life-changing. AND, just because something is gluten free, it doesn’t mean that it’s not junk food.

Downtime Again

Due to technical difficulties that started last week, I’m having to rebuild the site from scratch. So… things will look a little wonky today until we get it back together. 2/26/2011

News Bites: McMenamins has Gluten Free Buns and More

Gluten Free Buns at McMenamins

We heard from local gluten-free bakery, Gluten-Free Concepts (the makers of the Jensen’s “better buns”), that their buns are now available in McMenamins restaurants throughout Oregon and Washington. To accomplish this, they partnered with Food Services of America for the distribution and supply of buns. Apparently, the menus don’t show the buns yet, but we are told that they are available. The Jensens wrote to tell us that they did their own “undercover” operation to see how it would go.

Debbie and I went to the Edgefield Power Station Pub for lunch today. We did not tell the waitress who we were. She did a good job answering our questions about the french fries being cooked in a dedicated fryer and said they had dedicated toaster… Debbie had a spinach artichoke burger and I had their communication breakdown burger… both were delicious! They did a great job prepping the bun. It was lightly toasted and held together very well.

They are also working on hot dog buns, which sounds really exciting.

Gluten-Free Book Signing at Powell’s

Anne Byrn, author of The Cake Mix Doctor Bakes Gluten-Free, will be at Powell’s Books on Burnside, Tuesday February 2, at 7:00 PM. More info here. Find it on Amazon (Via Grain Damaged)

Anne Byrn shows how to transform gluten-free cake mixes into 76 easy-to-make, impossible-to-resist desserts. With recipes for tres leches cake, almond cream cheese pound cake, brownies, bars, muffins, and cookies, Byrn offers sweet news for people looking to cut gluten from their diets without cutting dessert.

February GIG Portland Metro Meeting

When: Feb. 12th – 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Speaker: DeeAnna Wales VanReken
Where:
Legacy Emanuel Hospital
2801 N Gantenbein Ave.
Portland, OR. 07227-1623
(503)413-2200
Room E-1075/1077

We had a Great Experience

We took Sienna’s parents to the Sellwood Pizza Kitchen (see our review) over the holidays and had a great experience. We showed up at lunchtime, and even though they weren’t serving the full menu, they went out of their way to make us all salads, which was really nice. They make what might be the best gluten-free pizza in Portland, but we went there for the salads. Their salads are awesome! We love that it’s a neighborhood place and wish that they were closer! Another great thing about the Sellwood Pizza Kitchen is that you can go there for a salad and then stop by the Jade Tea House (see our review) for tea and delicious gluten-free desserts afterward.

Gluten Free Seattle

We went to Seattle for the New Year and found a couple of places to eat up there, and ate some amazing food. The two restaurants that stick out in my mind were Tango and Wild Ginger. Tango serves up Tapas, and they have a gluten-free menu. Wild Ginger isn’t specifically gluten-free friendly, but we were able to talk to our waiter about what I could eat and he brought us some really amazing food.

New Gluten-Free Resource in Portland: Dessert Labs

We’ve featured pieces of news about Dessert Labs once or twice on Gluten Free Portland. I met with them last week and talked to them about their kitchen, gluten-free food, and what they’ve been up to lately.

Dessert Labs is Joe Kalal and Karen Goetsch. Joe is the chef, and Karen handles the business side of it. Joe found out that he had celiac while living in New York, and inspired by the horrible gluten-free food he found there, decided that he could do better. He enrolled in the French Culinary Institute in New York City to learn how to be a pastry chef. Since he couldn’t eat a lot of the wheat-based treats that they learned to cook there, he found that he had to concentrate on using his sense of smell instead. To gauge flakiness, crumb, or moistness in baked goods, he would break them open.

Joe and Karen are relatively new to Portland. They came here from New York City by way of the San Francisco Bay Area. They had meant to start Dessert Labs in the Bay Area, but visited Portland in the summer of 2010 and were delighted when everything just kind of magically fell in place. Within days, they fell in love with the city, found a place to live, and found a kitchen space to work out of.

In late spring of this year, they created a Kickstarter project that raised over $2500. If you’re not familiar with Kickstarter, it’s a website that is a place for creative people to find funding for their own projects. In a nutshell, a person can come up with an idea for a project, describe it on Kickstarter, and then other people can fund the project (see here for more details on how Kickstarter works). The people who fund a project generally get something out of it. In this case, Dessert Labs funders got care packages and subscriptions of gluten-free goodies. Karen and Joe set their project goal at $1000 and it didn’t take long before they passed it. When the funding doubled, they knew that they were really on to something.

What they are doing now is providing gluten-free baked goods to local cafes and restaurants. As we mentioned before, they are supplying Food Front on NW Thurman with gluten-free pies for the holidays. They also take orders for gluten-free cookies, cupcakes, bread, cakes, and pies on their website or by phone. They also told me that they are interested in taking special orders for people who would like to get a particular baked good in gluten-free form, including people who may have family recipes that need to be converted. They are vegetarian/vegan friendly.

Fortunately, they had some gluten-free treats for me to sample when I stopped by.

What we have here are some shortbread cookies, some cupcakes, and a ball of flourless chocolate cake. These were all really good and none of them had the funny aftertaste that you sometimes get with gluten-free baked goods. The flourless chocolate cake was my favorite item. Sienna and I both thought their cupcakes were really impressive. We’re both dying to know how their pies are. We’ll let you know when we have more information!

Dessert Labs – thedessertlabs.typepad.com – 347-513-5461