Working Behind the Scenes on Gluten-Free Portland!

Dr_Samantha_web_028Hello hello, everyone!

I wanted to first thank Dave for passing on the torch at GFP. He’s neck deep in a bunch of other projects but I’ll confess that I’m hoping to rope him into con

tinuing to do some restaurant reviews. He’s still got to eat, right?  And he’ll be around as he’s agreed to co-admin our FB group (come on over!).

Second, I figured it’s time to show my face and let you know that we’re working behind the scenes with plans for some site updates, new reviews and an exciting new layout and plan. Now we’re not quite ready for a big reveal but some of the things that are coming down the pike include:

  • Kids Corner. Local gluten-free cuties doing video reviews of restaurants, locally produced products, and other things of interest to our GF community.
  • Faster loading.
  • Updated restaurant lists.
  • Monthly feature focusing on restaurants that understand and are able to accommodate cross-contamination concerns.
  • Local GF product section.

What do you think? Anything else you’d like to see here? Please shout, we’re open to new ideas (and guest contributors!)

In Health,
Dr. Samantha (you can get me at contact (at) GlutenFreePortland (dot) org

 

 

Finally that Update I promised you: Changes for Gluten-free Portland

Sorry for the delay on getting this up. We wanted to make sure all of our ducks were in a row.

We’ve got some exciting news to share about Gluten-free Portland
that we’ve been hinting at both in the blog and in our facebook group over the last few weeks.

As you may have noticed things have gotten a little slow around here. It’s been our intention to spend more time getting things updated but life, alas, has been pulling us in a number of other directions of late. But the site is important. We are committed to providing up-to-date, accessible, and accurate information about all things gluten-free in Portland. So as of today, we’re passing the torch to Dr. Samantha, a local Portland ND who has a big heart for the gluten-free community.

She’ll be posting soon to update you all about her plans for the site. We’ll still be around so if you want to reach me (or my beautiful wife, Sienna) feel free to send us a note through the site and we’ll be sure to get it.

Thanks for all of your support! I’m looking forward to seeing how things shake out on the new site with Dr. Samantha at the helm.

-Dave

Changes Coming

Hi All. I’ve been taking an extended break from Gluten Free Portland, but now there are exciting changes coming. Among other things, we’re changing the look of the site, so things may be a little rough over the next few days as we transition to a new site theme. There are other, soon to be announced changes coming as well. Watch this space! – Dave

Site News: Crazy Busy this Summer

Hi All. Due to a personal project that is going on right now, all the free time (haha) that I would normally be spending writing posts here is going to other things. Posting is going to be on the light side this summer. If you’ve contacted me, for whatever reason, I’m sorry if it takes me a while to get back to you. Thanks for your patience!

 

Omission Beer Press Release

A few weeks ago, I posted about a mysterious invitation I got to a beer tasting event. The event was delayed until next week, but today I got a press release from them. Here it is in its entirety. It mentions that the beer is brewed using barley, which is a source of gluten. I’ll be curious to hear what they’re doing to remove the gluten from the beer. The press release also mentions that the CEO is celiac, and so is the wife of the brewmaster.

Check it out.

OMISSION BEER:

BREWED WITH BARLEY, SPECIALLY CRAFTED TO BE GLUTEN-FREE

 

Coming Soon to Oregon

“Drinking is Believing”

 

PORTLAND, Ore. – March 26, 2012 – This spring, Craft Brew Alliance will launch Omission Beer, the first craft beer brand in the United States focused exclusively on brewing great-tasting craft beers with traditional beer ingredients, including malted barley, that are specially crafted to be gluten-free. Omission beers are brewed by Widmer Brothers Brewing in Portland, Ore., which uses a proprietary brewing process to reduce the gluten levels to well below the widely accepted international gluten-free standard of 20 parts per million (ppm) for food and beverages. (The international gluten-free standard was set forth by the Codex Alimentarius Commission, which was created in 1963 by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and the World Health Organization.) Omission Beer is expected to release the first beers in its portfolio, which will be available only in Oregon, on April 2.

“Developing great-tasting, authentic craft beers that happen to be gluten-free was a personal mission for our brewmaster and me, and it’s a mission that our team really got behind. The launch of Omission Beer is a game changer for celiacs and the craft beer community,” said Terry Michaelson, CEO of Craft Brew Alliance. “As a 12-year celiac and longtime craft beer enthusiast, I’m thrilled to introduce two delicious craft beers that can be enjoyed equally by those who are affected by gluten sensitivities and those who are not.”

Unlike many other gluten-free beers currently available, Omission beers are not brewed with sorghum, rice, tapioca, buckwheat or quinoa; they are brewed using traditional beer ingredients: malted barley, hops, water and yeast.

“Omission Beer has been a work in progress for the last six years,” said Joe Casey, brewmaster at Widmer Brothers Brewing. “My wife was diagnosed as a celiac in 2006, and since then, we’ve made it our mission to brew a great-tasting craft beer using traditional beer ingredients that everyone of legal drinking age could enjoy. After years of hard work, mission accomplished.”

Gluten-Free Guarantee, Every Batch Tested:

Each batch of Omission Beer is tested by an independent lab to ensure that all Omission beers contain well below 20 ppm of gluten. Gluten levels in Omission beers are tested using the R5 competitive ELISA test. Beer will not be released to consumers until test results are received and after an extended quality assurance hold.

About Omission Beer

Omission Beer is a new brand of gluten-free craft beers, available only in Oregon. Brewed by Widmer Brothers Brewing in Portland, Ore., Omission is the first craft beer brand in the United States focused exclusively on brewing great-tasting craft beers with traditional beer ingredients, including malted barley, that are specially crafted to be gluten-free. Each batch of Omission Beer is tested using the R5 competitive ELISA test to ensure that it contains gluten levels that are well below the international standard for gluten-free of 20 ppm. Drinking is believing.

About Craft Brew Alliance

Craft Brew Alliance was formed with the merger of leading Pacific Northwest craft brewers Widmer Brothers Brewing and Redhook Ale Brewery in 2008. With an eye toward preserving and growing one-of-a-kind craft beers and brands, CBA was joined by Kona Brewing Company in 2010. For more information about CBA, visit craftbrew.com.

I’ll be attending the event next week, and bringing along our official gluten free beer correspondant so that we can get an educated taster to give the beer a try. We’ll post our results after the event!

Miscellanous News: Subway and Burgerville Go Gluten Free Friendly

SUBWAY Gluten Free

We heard about it first on our Facebook group page. SUBWAY has been in the gluten-free news for a couple of months by starting to provide gluten free bread (and brownies?) at their restaurants. We have yet to try the sandwiches, but have heard good things about them. They are also going to great lengths to educate their employees about gluten free issues and to prevent cross-contamination. For these things, I can only be grateful. Here’s a press release they sent us recently:

Gluten-Free goes mainstream: Oregon Subway Restaurants are first casual sandwich shop to offer gluten-free menu items

For the estimated 16 million Americans with gluten sensitivity, eating out can pose a real challenge. Now Oregonians can kick off the New Year with new choices, when SUBWAY restaurants across the state begin offering gluten-free sandwich options and gluten-free brownies as regular menu items after a successful test in Portland and Bend this summer.

Oregon is one of a handful of states to offer these alternatives, based on its reputation for mainstreaming food trends that might be niche alternatives elsewhere. When Subway’s Oregon stores had the highest average number of gluten free rolls sold during the test, it was clear that gluten-free foods are popular locally.

Gluten’s ubiquity can present a challenge for many families and work groups as they try to coalesce around a restaurant choice.

SUBWAY’s wheat-free sandwich rolls and brownies are produced in a gluten-free facility and are individually packaged. SUBWAY sandwich artists are trained to prevent cross-contamination during the sandwich-making process. For example, one employee will prepare a gluten-free sandwich order from start to finish. Other techniques include single-use knives and eliminating contact between traditional sandwich rolls and other ingredients including meat, cheese and vegetables.

Burgerville gluten free bun

Burgerville

Speaking of fast food, Burgerville, Portland’s much-loved burger chain, has come out with gluten-free buns that they are testing at two restaurants locally (25th & SE Powell in Portland and Fisher’s Landing in Vancouver). We went to one of the restaurants to check it out ourselves. As you can see from the photo above, the bun is delivered in a wrapper to help prevent cross-contamination. We were also handed a questionnaire to fill out.

After having heard so much about Burgerville from people we know, we were unprepared for how unappetizing their burgers were. The patties were overcooked. We both felt like the bun, which is produced by Udi’s in Colorado, did not compare well to the buns you can get from Jensen’s. The buns were dry, crumbly, and generally unappetizing. Of course, since the buns were being served in a package, there was no way to toast them, so I guess that would be expected.

On the plus side, the staff was extremely friendly, and the food came out fast. On the minus side, the restaurant was freezing cold. Did we mention that the burger patties weren’t very good? If you want to try them out yourself, Burgerville will be testing these buns until January 12, so you still have a few days left to try them.

Changes to Restaurant List

We’re making major changes to the Restaurant List. During this time some things may be reshuffled and also some other things may be missing temporarily, like comments. We’re working to restore everything and will post more information when it’s done.

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.