Reader Claudette wrote us with this situation (some details have been generalized – the editor):
I will be visiting Portland for the annual meeting of an organization I belong to. The meeting is being held at the Oregon State Convention Center (700NE block of MLK Drive) and I am trying to figure out how/where I am going to eat. I was just diagnosed with celiac not long ago, and this is my first travel experience since I was diagnosed. Furthermore I am responsible for planning a networking dinner for a group of about 30-40 people while there and I would like to be able to eat something with them. Would you or others who subscribe to your blog/online community have any suggestions for me? Nearly all of us will be staying somewhere between the LLoyd Center Mall and the Oregon State Conference Center, so it either needs to be in the area above mentioned, or easily accessible by MAX rail.
Here’s our answer.
Traveling is always tricky. I would suggest packing some cookies and/or bread. I did that during our trip to Italy and it came in handy. A person can also always go to a burger joint and ask for what I call “the Atkin’s Special,” which is a burger sans bun. There are a lot of places in Portland to get gluten-free food. Have you checked out our restaurant map? We also have a restaurant list.
For your dinner, I’m a bit stumped. For a group that size, you might try the Portland City Grill. The Portland City Grill isn’t on our restaurant list because they don’t have gluten-free items marked on the menu. So you’ll probably need to call ahead and also have a conversation with your server about what is safe and what isn’t. It’s been my experience that their staff is very helpful and knowledgeable about food allergies. I would also recommend contacting Abby’s Table. I don’t know if they do events like yours, but they’re in the neighborhood, have good food, and are gluten-free. Last, I would think either Deschutes Brewery or P.F. Chang’s might be a good choice. Good luck on your trip!
Does anybody have further suggestions? Let us know in the comments!!!