My Gluten-Free Dining Experience at “Real Food Daily” in Santa Monica And West Hollywood, CA

March 23, 2010 · Filed Under Gluten-Free Dining 

Recently, my husband, my 3 children  and I went to Los Angeles, California, USA. We did the typical tourist activities with visits to Disneyland, California Adventure World, the Hollywood Kodak Theatre, Universal Studios, the San Diego Zoo, and both the Santa Monica and Venice beaches. The weather was warm, sunny and overall it was a wonderful family trip that, as usual, went by far too quickly.

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While we were there we ventured out 3 times to an organic vegan restaurant called “Real Food Daily”. We are not vegan, but found out that this restaurant has a few gluten-free items on their menu and since the menu is vegan, apparently, there are no dairy ingredients. The chance of having a pleasant, safe, gluten-free, dairy-free dining experience appeared promising.

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When we arrived, we informed the waitress that we were gluten-free. She knew exactly what gluten-free was and checked every ingredient carefully for us. Due to her knowledge level, I could relax and really enjoy my meal. I ordered the real food meal which consisted of brown rice, beans, greens, land and sea vegetables, pressed salad, and the house dressing. I substituted extra vegetables for the brown rice since I seem to be sensitive to rice. It was absolutely delicious and I felt great and energetic afterwards.

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My daughter, with celiac disease, ordered the gluten-free pizza. This pizza consisted of a herb corn meal crust, sun dried tomato pesto, sliced tomatoes, spinach, basil, melted cashew and mozzarella cheeses (from soy), sautéed daily greens, and cannelini beans. A very healthy pizza for a growing girl. She loved it! I didn’t try it because I have a corn sensitivity, but I did try the dairy-free cheese and it tasted delicious.

My other two children ordered the mashed potatoes with beans and vegetables which they enjoyed.

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Now, for the creamy, melt in your mouth, chocolate GLUTEN-FREE, RICE-FREE, CORN-FREE, DAIRY-FREE CAKE! I felt speechless and almost fell off my chair when the waitress told me that it was indeed free of all those things. I felt good afterwards and didn’t experience any ill effects. My family equally enjoyed this tasty, delicious, chocolaty piece of paradise.

A very large gluten-free chocolate chip cookie was also available and my other daughter (a very experienced food critic) said it was very good.

Currently, Real Food Daily is located at two locations in Santa Monica and West Hollywood. We enjoyed both restaurants equally and will eagerly return for another pleasurable dining experience when we are in the Los Angeles area again. The owner, currently Ann Gentry, has a blog and she has a book (The Real Food Daily Cookbook) available as well. In my opinion, this owner should be congratulated for her efforts to increase the health of her customers during their dining experiences at her restaurants. We need more lovely restaurants like this who are willing to step up and contribute to the overall health of all (and that is not just the chocolate cake talking-lol)!.

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Note: Please check the ingredients carefully with the chef and waitress at this restaurant each time you visit since ingredients and the menu could change. I hope your experience is as wonderful as mine!

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