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San Antonio Attractions, Restaurants and Information Links
 

On this page, we have put all the information we have about San Antonio that may make your visit more enjoyable. Included on this page are (1) descriptions of and links to the area's premier attractions, (2) numerous restaurant suggestions and reviews and (3) informational links for our GF guests. Below is a list of links that can be used to take you directly to each of the sections on this page; simply click on the link to go to that section. (At the end of each section, there will be a link to bring you back to the top of this page:

 

San Antonio Attractions
Restaurant Recommendations and Reviews
Traveling Gluten-Free
Chicken Paradise Support for the Celiac Community
Celiac Disease Resources and Information

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

San Antonio Attractions

 

Either you are coming to San Antonio on business, or you are here for a personal reason or you have simply chosen our city as your vacation destination because there is so much to see and do. In any of these cases, you will find that there is enough to keep you busy throughout your vacation or in your time away from business or your personal activities. In fact, you'll probably find that there is so much to do that you'll have to choose carefully. In this effort, we can help. Let us be your advisors as to what is fun and what is worthwhile and what is not to be missed. We'll be happy to discuss your options when you arrive, but in case you'd like to do some investigation beforehand, there are a number of attractions for which San Antonio is well-known, and we are happy to provide some information about them.

 

Visit San Antonio Dot Com    www.visitsanantonio.com )

visit san antonio

One of the best places to begin your investigation of all there is to see and do in the San Antonio area is to visit the city's main tourism site. You can do so with the link above.

 

The San Antonio Children's Museum

san antonio kids

San Antonio Children's Museum
305 E. Houston St.
San Antonio, TX 78205
(210) 212-4453
Website: www.sakids.org
Email: info@sakids.org

The San Antonio Children's Museum was founded by a group of dedicated volunteers who were committed to building a community space dedicated to early childhood development. Since opening its doors in September of 1995, more than two million visitors have explored three floors of hands-on exhibits that spark children's imagination and help them discover a world of knowledge. Dedicated to children ages 0-10 years, the museum's exhibits and programs are focused on early childhood learning, especially in the creative arts, sciences and early literacy.

In 2008, the museum launched a process of exhibit and program renovation. Three new permanent exhibits, the 1750 square foot HEB Kids' Market, the action-packed PowerBall Hall and the Tot Spot dedicated to infants and toddlers 0-36 months mark the museum's commitment to become a key resource in San Antonio for early childhood development.

The San Antonio Children's Museum is dedicated to providing engaging hands-on experiences where Kids Play to Learn and Adults Learn to Play. The Museum is a unique and innovative educational resource dedicated to those we serve. Through interactive play, we inspire a journey of life-long learning, ultimately enriching lives and positively impacting the San Antonio community and beyond.

Note: All children must be accompanied by an adult. All adults must be accompanied by a child.

 

SeaWorld

sea world

SeaWorld San Antonio
10500 SeaWorld Drive
San Antonio, TX 78251
(800) 700-7786
Website: www.seaworld.com
Email: www.seaworld.com/sanantonio

SeaWorld San Antonio, the world's largest marine life adventure park and family entertainment showplace, presents a splashy lineup of more than 26 sensational shows, thrilling rides, animal attractions and educational experiences for all ages. It's actually four parks in one on 250 acres: a show park, a rides and slides park, a water park and an amazing animals park.

 

Fiesta Texas

fiesta texas  

Six Flags Fiesta Texas
17000 IH-10 West
San Antonio, TX 78257
(210) 697-5050
Website: www.sixflags.com/fiestatexas
Email: Email Fiesta Texas

Fiesta Texas is one of the chain of Six Flags amusement parks found across the country. This one has a distinctive "Texas" flavor, with rides and entertainment themed accordingly. You and your family will find all that you've come to expect from a Six Flags property- exciting rides, loads of entertainment and shows, a wide range of dining opportunities and, in addition, a complete water park. So grab your swimsuits and bring the entire family.

 

Schlitterbahn

schlitterbahn

Schlitterbahn Waterpark Resort
305 West Austin St.
New Braunfels, TX 78130
(830) 608-8520
Website: www.schlitterbahn.com/nb

Bring the whole family and see why Schlitterbahn Waterpark Resort has been voted the best waterpark anywhere! This family-owned, family-friendly park offers FREE parking, FREE tubes, FREE lifejackets, and allows you to bring your own picnic. Schlitterbahn Waterpark Resort in New Braunfels has over 3 miles of tubing adventures, 7 children's water playgrounds,17 water slides, the world's first surfing machine, and 3 uphill water coasters spread over 65 acres.

 

Natural Bridge Caverns

natural bridge

Natural Bridge Caverns
26495 Natural Bridge Cavern Road
Natural Bridge Caverns, TX 78266
(210) 651-6101
Website: www.naturalbridgecaverns.com
Email: tickets@naturalbridgecaverns.com

On March 27th, 1960, four intrepid students from St. Mary's University in San Antonio geared up for another weekend of spelunking in the Texas Hill Country. They were about to make their fourth journey deeper into a network of narrow passages beneath an amazing 60 foot natural limestone bridge between San Antonio and New Braunfels. What they discovered that day was nothing less than the mother lode of underground majesty and wonder: Natural Bridge Caverns. Chamber after chamber of spectacular formations, one the size of a football field. Gigantic towering columns. Emerald pools. Delicate, crystalline soda straws. All living and still growing.

Since it was first explored by those four daring young men, millions and millions of visitors from around the world have discovered the awesome beauty of Natural Bridge Caverns. Governor John Connally christened it the "Jewel in the Crown of Texas' Attractions" and it has been designated as a National Natural Landmark.

 

Cypress Valley Canopy Tours

cypress valley

Cypress Valley Canopy Tours
1223 Paleface RR
Spicewood, TX 78669
(512) 264-8880
Website: www.cypressvalleycanopytours.com
Email: e-reservations@cypressvalleycanopytours.com

Cypress Valley Canopy Tours offers a thrilling eco-adventure, where you fly through the canopy of old growth cypress trees, some up to 100 feet tall. A new world unfolds as you glide on steel zip lines from platform to platform high in the treetops. Cypress Valley Canopy Tours is a place of adventure, nature, fun, and relaxation. You soar through the trees, harnessed in climbing gear, for an exciting look at Texas Hill Country nature from a completely new perspective. Their guides will escort you on an individual, group or family adventure where you will have your adrenaline rush and learn about the local ecology from a bird's eye view. After your canopy zip tour, enjoy a picnic and swimming at a private lake where you can share your adventure with family and friends.

Biking in San Antonio

San Antonio is a great city for biking. There are a number of bicycle paths and routes that extend from the Riverwalk south through the San Antonio Missions. Some parts of the system are dedicated bicycle paths, and some are marked bike routes with dedicated bike lanes.

You can have a look at a map of the bike path system here.

alamo bike rentals

Renting a bike in San Antonio is made very easy by Alamo Bike Rentals.

If you would like to find out more about the services they provide, the bikes they rent and the costs involved, simply click here.

Segway Tours

segcity

Another way to see the city of San Antonio is by riding a Segway on one of the many tours offered by Segcity. You can find out more about these tours and investigate costs and schedules by visiting the Segcity web site for San Antonio. Simply click here.

Parks and Gardens

brackenridge park

Brackenridge Park

Located adjacent to the San Antonio Zoo, 343.7-acre Brackenridge Park is a focal point for outdoor family activities. The picturesque San Antonio River, which originates from artesian springs north of the park, meanders by paved, tree-lined paths suitable for bicycling and walking. Additional recreational opportunities include picnicking, pedal boating, fishing, birding and nature study. Facilities include athletic fields, playgrounds, concessions and a 3.5-mile miniature railway. Brackenridge Golf Course, the oldest municipal golf course in Texas, is also located within the park. In addition to the exotic and captivating birds and animals on display at the Zoo, Brackenridge Park itself attracts a variety of wildlife. Squirrels and wild birds such as green herons, great egrets, great blue herons and black-bellied whistling ducks, mallard ducks and cormorants are often observed in the park or on the Zoo grounds.

san antonio zoo

The San Antonio Zoo

The San Antonio Zoo is home to the third largest animal collection in North America, including several endangered whooping cranes. The Zoo is open 7 days a week year-round. There is an admission fee. The Zoo maintains an extensive web site that will allow you find out all about the programs and events there and plan your visit. You can visit that site by clicking here.

japanese tea garden

The Japanese Tea Gardens

The Japanese Tea Garden reopened in March 2008, with fanfare that included a serenade of Japanese songs by Tafoyalla Middle School Japanese students, keyboard by Carol Gulley, calligraphy and origami demonstrations, and an enormous Koi-shaped cake. The garden had been closed while the San Antonio Parks and Recreation Department and the San Antonio Parks Foundation completed infrastructure rehabilitation to the facility, to include walkways, piping, filtration, wall repairs, and pond sealing. The restored garden features a lush year-round garden and a floral display with shaded walkways, stone bridges, a 60-foot waterfall and ponds filled with Koi. Members of the Jingu family, which lived and worked in the Garden in the 1920s, attended the ceremony, along with the descendents of Ray Lambert, the Park Commissioner who conceived of the idea of turning an abandoned rock quarry into a "lily pond."

The Japanese Tea Gardens are located at 3853 N. St. Mary's Street, and are open 7 days a week from 8 AM until dusk. There is no admission fee. Call (210)821-3120 for additional information.

mitchell lake
pelicans

Bird Watching at Mitchell Lake

10750 Pleasanton Rd., San Antonio, TX 78221
Phone: (210) 628-1639

Located in south San Antonio, Mitchell Lake is a 624-acre site with a mixture of brushland, grassland, mud flats, shallow ponds, deep ponds, and a deep water lake. The 600 acre lake is positioned on a natural migratory bird route and serves as a resting point for tens of thousands of birds each year. Among the more than 300 species observed are pelicans, egrets, roseate spoonbills, wild ducks, and hawks. The property is managed by the National Audubon Society and includes over 7.5 miles of trails winding through the various habitats. Bird-watchers come from all over the world to see the unique variety of birds that visit there. Check the website calendar listing for monthly birding tours, and a year-round schedule of free family programs, gardening workshops, community events. Hours: 8 am to 4 pm Saturday and Sunday. Admission is $2 per person (5 and under free).

Many programs and events are free to the public, check listings at the Mitchell Lake Audubon Center Web Site or call the Center.

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Restaurant Recommendations and Reviews

 

Please Note:
The restaurants listed here have been recommended by celiacs because they had a good experience there. We do not guarantee any food or method of preparation to be gluten free, however. Remember that there are frequent changes in staff and procedures at all restaurants, so we cannot guarantee that all this information remains accurate, although we try to keep this information current. We hope that you will allow us to update you when you are here. In any case, you should be prepared to ask the restaurant your own personal questions regarding your specific needs. We hope that these places listed will be helpful to you in making your decisions.

If you would like to print a list of all the restaurants that appear on this page so that you can bring it with you to San Antonio, then click on the link below and then print the contents of the new window that will open:

Printable Restaurant List

To print the name, address, phone and review for any particular restaurant, just use the "Printable Restaurant Review" link provided for each of them.

The restaurant recommendations and reviews are grouped into the following categories (click on the category to view):

        Downtown and Riverwalk
        Near Chicken Paradise
        Elsewhere in San Antonio

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Downtown

Biga on the Banks
203 South St. (St. Mary's at Market), San Antonio, TX
Phone: (210) 225-0722
Biga on the Banks was voted one of the "top five restaurants in Texas" by Gourmet Magazine and was a James Beard Award Nominee in 2001, 2002, and 2003. This fine dining restaurant is a great place for an extra-special dinner. The restaurant can accommodate patrons with different dietary restrictions. For example, almost all the entrées can be prepared gluten-free. The menu changes daily according to the season and the availability of fresh ingredients. Biga's preparation has been described as elegant, bold, and contemporary, and will not disappoint the gastronome. Such fine dining comes at a cost, however. Although there are early and late evening specials, including a prix fixé three-course dinner for about $40/person, a complete dinner for two, with wine, can easily run upwards of $100.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for Biga on the Banks at www.biga.com.

Las Canarias
112 College St. (St. Mary's at Market), San Antonio, TX
Phone: (210) 518-1063
Las Canarias on the Riverwalk is a great place to eat and people-watch, and a fantastic experience for those of us dining gluten free. Chef John Brand changes the Spanish-influenced menu with the seasons. Las Canarias strives to offer local, fresh choices as much as possible. If you're eating gluten-free, ask your waitperson to check with the chef for suggestions from his daily menu choices. Usually, about half of the choices are or can be gluten-free (although some of these will involve asking for gluten-free bread). Lunch prices are typical, although dinners are moderately expensive. For such fresh and healthy choices, though, it's worth it. One of our previous Bed and Breakfast guests called it one of their top gluten-free dining experiences ever! Valet parking is included at lunch and dinner.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for Las Canarias at www.omnihotels.com/FindAHotel/SanAntonioLaMansionDelRio/Dining.aspx.

Oloroso
1024 South Alamo, San Antonio, TX 78210
Phone: (210) 223-3600
Josh Cross, the chef/owner, prepares delicious gluten-free meals and can accommodate other dietary needs (e.g., diabetic, lactose intolerant). The chef's sister was diagnosed celiac in 1998, so he is well-versed in gluten-free cooking. All the ingredients he uses are natural, fresh and as local as possible. When ordering, all we had to do was avoid the homemade pasta and obvious bread items. I enjoyed roasted swordfish and zucchini finished with fresh basil and soffrito sauce. Joe had roasted chicken and scallions, fingerling potatoes, and sugar snap peas with a roasted red pepper sauce. Dessert could have been Ginger and Cardamom Crème Brulee with Blueberries or Chocolate Pots du Crème with Cherries and Pistachios. There is always at least one soup of the day, and it is almost always gluten-free. There are plenty of full meal salads as well.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for Oloroso at www.oloroso.biz.

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Near Chicken Paradise

The Little Aussie Bakery & Cafe
3610 Avenue B, San Antonio, TX
Phone: (210) 826-7877
If you have been eating gluten-free for very long, then you might already know about The Little Aussie Bakery & Cafe where everything is gluten-free. They have an assortment of Big Bloke sandwiches, soups, salads and pizzas. Little Aussie offers two sizes of pizza. Rita's crusts are casein free, egg free, and soy free- and they are excellent. Rita's husband John told me that they have a variety of double-crust pies at all times, including chicken, beef, vegetable, feta and spinach. There is a wide variety of cakes and cookies to please your sweet tooth. They are closed on Mondays. Check their website for the hours because they change with the seasons. Bring your own beer or wine.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for The Little Aussie Bakery & Cafe at www.thelittleaussiebakery.com.

Pam's Patio Kitchen
Wurzbach and Lockhill Selma, San Antonio, TX
Phone: (210) 492-1359
Pam's Patio has been serving GF meals since 2003 and was the first GFRAP restaurant in San Antonio. It is open for lunch and dinner Tuesday through Saturday. There are so many GF favorites here that it would be hard to describe all of them. Lunch is ordered at the counter, where the server can tell you which items are gluten free. They do not have GF bread for the sandwiches, but most other items, including my favorite, the Guadalajara Special Chalupa with an addition of chicken breast are GF. The corn chips are made in-house daily, and nothing else is cooked in the oil so they are GF, along with the hand mashed guacamole, their signature mango salsa and smoky roasted chili salsa. At dinner, there is a printed GF menu that includes at least half of the regular menu. Pam and David, along with their sons Alex and Ryan, and daughter-in-law Valerie, have been clued in to GF cooking for so long, they consider our restrictions when they are planning nightly specials. There are several soups daily, and only the gumbo is off limits for us. David makes the pizza crust himself, and is well aware of how to avoid cross contamination. All of their pizza toppings are GF and available at lunch and dinner. This is a great place to go with the family and sit out on the patio to enjoy a leisurely meal and a glass of wine.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for Pam's Patio Kitchen at www.pamspatio.com.

Paloma Blanca
5800 Broadway (In Cambridge Plaza), San Antonio, TX
Phone: (210) 822-6151
This upscale Alamo Heights restaurant proudly offers a two page menu of gluten-free dishes, ranging from local favorites to more modern Mexican cuisine. The hacienda-inspired dining rooms and landscaped patio appropriately frame picture-perfect plates such as their Pollo chipotle, with the signature house chipotle cream sauce, and their tangy tomatillo sauced Enchiladas Verdes. Other GF favorites include the Veracruz-style red snapper and the vegetable Chile Relleno, a light, delicious version of the popular dish. While there, be sure to enjoy one of their hand made margaritas. Each member of the staff takes pride in providing their celiac guests with an exceptional and safe experience. The full celiac menu can be downloaded from their menu page on the Paloma Blanca website.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for Paloma Blanca at www.palomablanca.net.

The Cove
606 W. Cypress St. (2 blocks west of San Pedro), San Antonio, TX
Phone: (210) 227-2683
The Cove, featured on the Food Network, has a separate gluten-free menu (in addition to a regular one), and gluten-free daily specials. They even have a dedicated fryer, so their sweet potato fries, chicken nuggets and fried corn tortillas are all gluten-free. The Cove is famous for their SOL (Sustainable, Organic, Local) burgers (named best in San Antonio by Texas Monthly in 2009), and they offer Little Aussie Bakery gluten-free buns for them. You can choose beef, bison, vegetarian or lamb. We also like the fish tacos. They use gluten-free El Lago corn tortillas. In the bar, you can enjoy a selection of GF beers. For dessert you can choose a GF brownie and most of their Bluebell Ice Cream flavors are GF. There's a playground for the kids. and the live music usually starts by 7 or 8pm. Sit inside or outside near their vegetable and herb garden.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for The Cove at thecove.us/cove/index.php.

Whole Foods
255 E. Basse Rd (in the Quarry), San Antonio, TX 78209
Phone: (210) 826-4676
Whole Foods Market is a national grocery store chain specializing in organic, local, fresh and dietary-restricted foods. They have have the largest selection of gluten free products in San Antonio- fresh, prepared, frozen or packaged. Whole Foods carries several GF beers, including Redbridge, Bard's Tale and Greens. Just be careful in the Bakery Department, in the Deli and at the salad bar- read the labels and remember that for salad and food bars, cross-contamination cannot be ruled out.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for Whole Foods at wholefoodsmarket.com/storesbeta/quarry/.

Bistro Vatel
218 E. Olmos Dr. (Mccullough and Hildebrand), San Antonio, TX
Phone: (210) 828-3141
Bistro Vatel captures the feel of a Parisian eatery; chef and owner Damien Watel studied in Paris at the Ecole de Cuisine Promhote. Dining at Bistro Vatel is like having your own personal French chef. There are classic dishes (e.g., Coq Au Vin, Confit de Canard and Medallions de Filet de Boeuf Grilles avec Béarnaise) that are prepared with seasonal ingredients. The real gems are the Plats du Jour; Chef Damien buys the season's freshest products each day and then decides how to prepare them. For celiacs, Chef Damien will evaluate any dish ordered for gluten content, and either prepare it differently or make substitutions, all using clean pans and utensils whenever necessary. Reservations are suggested for dinner, and celiacs are encouraged to indicate their entrée preferences ahead of time.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for Bistro Vatel at www.bistrovatel.com.

Chipotle Mexican Grill
438 NW Loop 410 Suite 101 (San Pedro & Loop 410), San Antonio, TX 78216
Phone: (210) 340-0571
Chipotle Mexican Grill is a compromise between Mexican fast food and a sit-down restaurant. It is set up cafeteria-style, and you direct the line-server to prepare your dish with the ingredients you want. The only gluten on the menu is the flour tortilla so I recommend the burrito bowl with a rice base. The food is reasonably fresh, well-prepared and tasty. The only caveat for celiacs is to be aware that the gloved hand that scoops up your lettuce could have previously touched the flour tortillas from a previous order. I have found that the servers respond well if you ask them to use a new pair of gloves for your order, but you must remember to ask. With that in mind, you can enjoy a great meal at Chipotle.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for Chipotle's Mexican Grill at www.chipotle.com.

Five Guys Burgers and Fries
Quarry Village, 260 E. Basse Road, Suite 107, San Antonio, TX 78209
Phone: 210-822-6200
The limited menu at Five Guys (hamburgers, hot dogs, French fries, and a few drinks) is good news for celiacs because the only item containing gluten is the bun. The meat is 100% beef cooked well done, and the gluten-free hotdogs are from Hebrew National. They use Kraft American cheese. You do have a choice of toppings, all of which are gluten free, and your burger is made to order. The buns are heated on a separate grill, which eliminates cross contamination, so order your burger without a bun. This is a take-home or eat-out-of-the-sack place. If you are going to eat there, get one of the cardboard bowls intended for peanuts to hold your bunless burger because it is messy trying to eat off of the paper wrapper. Be aware that the fries are cooked in peanut oil and there are peanuts-in-the-shell for people to eat while waiting, so those of you with peanut allergies might want to go elsewhere.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for Five Guys Burgers and Fries at www.fiveguys.com.

P. F. Chang's China Bistro
255 E Basse Road Suite 1200 (In The Quarry Market), San Antonio, TX, 78209
Phone: 210-507-1000
P.F. Chang's China Bistro is only 2 miles from Chicken Paradise. The cuisine is fresh and contemporary, and the staff is attentive to our needs. Ask for the gluten-free menu which has been expanded recently. Besides the chicken entrees, there are now several beef choices, along with the usual seafood dishes to choose from. There are choices of appetizers, salads, vegetarian, and noodle entrees. The GF menu also notes special ordering instructions, such as to omit wonton strips or to substitute Chang's Gluten-Free Sauce for the regular sauce. It's always good to remind the server of these special instructions and to verify them again when the food is served. P.F. Chang's prepares all of their dishes with fresh, high quality ingredients, using Mandarin style wok cooking in their exhibition kitchen. You might save room for their GF Flourless Chocolate Dome that is served with fresh berries and raspberry sauce. Reservations are strongly encouraged, especially for the busy lunch and dinner hours.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for P. F. Chang's China Bistro at www.pfchangs.com.

Shiraz Persian Cuisine
4230 McCullough at Olmos Circle, San Antonio, TX
Phone: (210) 829-5050
The Persian cuisine at Shiraz is distinctly flavorful, delicately aromatic, and decidedly celiac friendly. The mainstays of Persian cooking are grilled meat, slow-cooked stews, and rice. The meat is often served as kabobs- small chunks of lamb, beef, or chicken which may be marinated in ingredients that might include saffron, onions, yogurt, and lime juice, that are then skewered and grilled over an open flame. Vegetables, fruits, and spices (such as saffron, mint, and cardamom) figure predominantly in Persian cooking. The chef and owner, Rashin Mazaheri, has trained her kitchen staff in attending to special dietary needs, but you should of course verify your choices with her or your waiter. Be sure you try the traditional Persian stew called Ghaimeh Bademjan- beef and eggplant in a zesty tomato sauce. The wait staff is exceptionally knowledgeable about each dish's ingredients and preparation.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for Shiraz Persian Cuisine at www.shirazpersiancuisine.htm.

Beto's Comida Latina
8142 Broadway, San Antonio, TX
Phone: (210) 930-9393
Beto's has a simple menu that concentrates on handmade quesadillas, empanadas, and tacos, each specialty is served up in a variety of ways that is sure to appeal. Nearly all the quesadillas and tacos can be prepared gluten free with fresh corn tortillas. Individual recipes are complex, with the blending of fresh wholesome ingredients and a multitude of spices creating unique and flavorful fare. Owners Albert and Cheryl Mijangos are gracious and generous proprietors who truly want to provide authentic Latin food and drink that is delicious and gluten free. Try the Grilled Fish Taco, Beef Fajita Taco, Chicken Fajita Taco, and the Chicken Tomatillo Quesadillas (no sour cream). The chips and salsa are also gluten free. This is a place to take the whole family, with a casual, make-yourself-at-home feel about it. The prices are very reasonable, and there's even a Lil'Betitos menu with gluten-free choices.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for Beto's Comida Latina at www.betosinfo.com.

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Elsewhere in San Antonio

Asia Kitchen
1739 SW Loop 410 near Marback, San Antonio, TX
Phone: (210) 673-0662
Asia Kitchen's success stems from a powerful combination of great food and a profound commitment to customer service. Chef Sally Murray and her family fix fresh and tantalizing dishes for a growing celiac clientele. The hallmark of their Thai meals is large quantities of the freshest ingredients available. The menu includes soups, curry dishes, noodle dishes and even salads. Asia Kitchen does not offer many menu items that require soy sauce, but they do stock the GF version for us. MSG is not used in any dishes, and the woks are thoroughly cleaned between orders. If you are in any doubt about a dish, just ask your server. Sally recommends that those with dietary restrictions avoid the weekday lunch buffet because she cannot guarantee her undivided attention to special orders. Instead, consider calling ahead to place a special carryout order. State your need for a gluten-free meal and ask that the chef be alerted to the GF status of your order; it will be personally prepared. The in-house menu indicates the items that are GF with a smiley face. On the website menu there is an orange GF out by the name of the item.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for the Asia Kitchen at www.asia-kitchen.com.

Loretta's Finest Simply Organic Southern Kitchen
858 FM 78, Schertz, TX 78154
Phone: (210) 945-8700
This restaurant serves what is considered by many to be the best food in Texas. As its name indicates, it is totally organic, and the only such restaurant in the South. Loretta's serves delicious and flavorful gluten-free, guilt-free and low-calorie Southern food. The menu is influenced by the borders of the Ark-La-Tex Region (Texas, Arkansas, and Louisiana), and the dishes are constructed of organic and locally-grown produce that's fresh daily. Serving the best fried chicken, all-natural Angus beef, gumbos, gluten-free desserts and so much more, Loretta's is a real treat. Eating healthy never tasted so good.
Read the Full Review

Fralo's Art of Pizza
23651 I-10 West, San Antonio, TX
Phone: (210) 698-6616
Fralo's is a popular pizzeria with many devoted regulars. Inspired by a regular customer who brought in a gluten-free crust from Whole Foods, they began getting crusts from GF Kneads in Austin and now offer a wide range of GF pizzas using their own signature toppings. There is even one pizza that is made on a large Portobello mushroom cap! Fralo's has a selection of fresh-made salads to go with your pizza- just ask about the ingredients when you order and remind them to leave off the croutons. Fralo's has a front porch, outdoor dining and live music Thursdays through Sunday. Fralo's now has a beer and wine license, and Bard's Tale Beer is available. Fralo's is also pet friendly.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for Fralo's Art of Pizza at www.fralos.com.

Maggiano's Little Italy
17603 IH 10W, San Antonio, TX, 78257
Phone: 210-451-6000
Maggiano's is an upscale Italian restaurant chain, and has been offering gluten-free pasta for several years at their restaurants. When you identify yourself as a gluten-free customer a manager will alert the kitchen and a chef will come and talk to you about your choices. There are notations on the menu that indicate the gluten-free choices. This same chef will then follow your order all the way through until it comes to your table. All dishes are made from scratch and to order, so this will eliminate any chance for mistakes.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for Maggiano's Little Italy at www.maggianos.com.

Frederick's Bistro
14439 NW Military Hwy, Shavano Park, TX
Phone: (210) 888-1500
At this lovely French restaurant, almost everything on the menu is prepared from fresh ingredients as it is ordered. Many of the menu choices are naturally gluten free; most others can be modified. Butter is used extensively, but if you cannot eat dairy, many dishes can be prepared with olive oil instead. You can ask for Frederick or the manager on duty when you come in and discuss your needs with them. Duck Confit is one of the few dishes prepared in advance, allowing for no modifications but it is gluten-free; There are five delicious gluten-free desserts as well (Mixed Sorbet Cup, Chocolate Terrine, Mango Crème Brûlée, Black Chocolate Mousse, and Homemade Cherry Ice Cream with Marinated Kirsch Cherries). The menu changes with the seasons so ask about ingredients. This is wonderful food in a lovely setting.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for Frederick's Bistro at www.frederickssa.com.

BJ's Restaurant
17503 I-10 W (at The Rim), San Antonio, TX
Phone: 210-690-2600
Because BJ's Restaurant has locations in several states, we were pleasantly surprised to find that their new location at The Rim is up to the challenge of providing gluten-free offerings. There was a separate, gluten-free menu with sufficient choices to afford variety for repeated visits. The waiter seemed knowledgeable, but it was the appearance of the restaurant manager that impressed us. He explained how his cooks and wait staff would follow specific procedures to ensure no cross-contamination of our meals. In fact, he, rather than the regular waiter, brought us our gluten-free pizza. We were impressed with attention that BJ's pays to ensure that such a small segment of their customer base has a satisfying and safe dining experience.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for BJ's Restaurant at www.bjsrestaurants.com.

Carino's
1301 N. FM 1604 W, San Antonio, TX, 78258
Phone: 210-490-7316
Carino's Italian Restaurant has been a member of the Gluten Free Restaurant Awareness Program (GFRAP) for several years now, so there should be an experienced manager on duty to walk you through your choices. Among the delicious dishes are Lemon Rosemary Chicken, Grilled Citrus Balsamic Salmon, Chicken Marsala, Jalapeno Garlic Tilapia, Chicken Scaloppini and Italian Pot Roast. Although there is no gluten-free pasta served at Carino's they do offer some alternatives such as sautéed green beans, potatoes, or garlic sauteed spinach. There are dishes for kids and a short dessert menu. One manager assured us that their chefs were well versed in how to avoid cross contamination and indeed, our meals were very tasty, fresh and enjoyable. You should be prepared to make your needs known, however.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for Carino's Restaurant at www.carinos.com.

Outback Steakhouse
16080 San Pedro Avenue, San Antonio, TX, 78232
Phone: 210-490-7316
Outback Steakhouse is a national chain trading on the Australian mystique. They have a gluten-free menu, but when you make your choices from it you should definitely tell your server what must be left off- croutons on the salad, for example, or the seasoned rice under some entrees. On our visit, both were brought to our table. There was much re-doing of the order, and two managers got involved to ensure it was correctly prepared. The food we eventually got was quite good, but be aware of the potential difficulties. The Chocolate Thunder from Down Under was very good, and quite large enough to split. There is a children's menu that lists some gluten-free choices, but you should verify those, too.
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You can visit the web site for Outback Steakhouse at www.outback.com.

Romano's Macaroni Grill
1011 North FM 1604 E, San Antonio, TX, 78232
Phone: 210-402-3019
Romano's Macaroni Grill is an upscale Mediterranean restaurant with Italian entrees, Greek salads and a selection of soups and desserts. There is no separate gluten-free menu, but, at the suggestion of Romano's corporate office, you should speak to the manager or chef about your menu selections to ensure they are prepared properly. When we dined there, the staff went out of their way (obtaining some non-marinated chicken from another restaurant and preparing a special gluten-free glaze) to ensure that our meal was a safe and delicious one. It certainly was. It is probably possible to eat at just about any restaurant with enough time to make appropriate selections and preparation requests, but Romano's seems more willing than most to work with celiacs to ensure a pleasant dining experience.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for Romano's Macaroni Grill at www.macaronigrill.com.

Boston's- The Gourmet Pizza
1827 N Loop 1604 E (between 281 and Gold Canyon), San Antonio, TX
Phone: (210) 576-1300
This national chain has recently added gluten-free pizza to their menu after learning about gluten-free procedures from the supplier of the gluten-free crust. Boston's has about thirteen different GF pizza combinations for you, and the owners tell me that they have trained their staff to avoid gluten contamination. The pizza crust is also casein free but does have egg whites and soy lecithin. They do not offer casein-free cheese but will make your pizza without cheese if you wish. I talked to their national chef about other menu items; the rest of the menu has not yet been appropriately screened for hidden gluten in the ingredients. You should stick to the gluten-free pizza for now.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for Boston's- The Gourmet Pizza at www.bostonsgourmet.com.

SeaWorld San Antonio
10500 SeaWorld Drive, San Antonio, TX
Phone: (800) 700-7786
There are a number of places to eat at Sea World, and eating gluten-free is a lot easier than you might think. A little advance planning, and perhaps bringing some gluten-free buns and rolls for the hamburgers and hotdogs might be all you need to do. If you are planning on attending the park and want to eat there, you should definitely read the review.
Read the Full Review
You can visit the web site for Sea World at www.seaworld.com/sanantonio.

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Traveling Gluten-Free

 

gluten free on the go

Gluten Free On-the-Go is the world's largest global on-line database of gluten free eating establishments, providing you with an easy way to manage gluten free lifestyles. The site provides free access to thousands of listings catering to gluten-free guests, showcasing restaurants, pizzerias, bakeries, hotels, etc., both around the corner and around the globe.

 

gluten free registry

The mission of the Gluten Free Registry is to put people and gluten-free friendly restaurants, bakeries, caterers, grocers and more together. You can utilize their free, searchable, moderated database of almost 18,000 gluten-free friendly business locations to find one near you or your travel destination. Their site's information can also be searched by proximity on your iPhone, Android device or GPS. They also have a full-color print magazine available.

 

gluten free travel site

On this website you can find restaurants, grocery stores, hotels, resorts and cruise ships that accommodate gluten-free diets in any area of the world. Or you can search by city/town or zip and map the results. You can also submit your own reviews from your last vacation or even your favorite local establishments.

 

inseekers

InnSeekers.com began way back in June 1997 as one of the first sites featuring a fully searchable database of bed and breakfasts, and country inns in the USA. Since then, the site has evolved into a world-class directory listing well over 12,000 bed and breakfasts from the around the world. InnSeekers.com is one of the most popular destinations on the web for travellers seeking bed and breakfasts or country inns.

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Chicken Paradise Support for the Celiac Community

Anne and Joe Barfield have committed themselves and their bed and breakfast to providing as much support as they can for the celiac community in Texas and around the nation. Since she has celiac disease herself, Anne knows better than most how helpful supporting family, friends and community are to those with celiac disease or gluten intolerance. Anne is chairwoman of Alamo Celiac San Antonio.

You can learn a bit more about Alamo Celiac here, and there is a link to their web site in the last section of links on this page.

Even before Chicken Paradise opened as a bed & breakfast, the Barfields had hosted, attended or supported a number of celiac-related events. Take a look below at some of them:

Alamo Celiac Annual Easter Egg Hunt at Chicken Paradise

In 2005 Chicken Paradise began hosting an annual Easter Egg Hunt for the children of Alamo Celiac. With the help of some parent volunteers and the assistance of the Easter Bunny, attendance has gone from 9 kids, to about 30 kids, along with other family members. Anne and Joe get a kick out of seeing the kids enjoy the gluten-free treats and hunting the eggs. We hope this event will continue for years to come. Click on the thumbnail images below to have a look at some of the pictures taken at our latest Easter outing:

easter egg thumbnails

 

The Alamo Celiac GIG "Got Guts" Run, Walk and Food Fair - 2010

photographer barfield
Photographer Anne Barfield

Each year, Alamo Celiac GIG sponsors the "Got Guts 5K", which involves a fun run and walk plus a food fair. This event raises celiac awareness and offers those who are gluten intolerant a wealth of information. Chicken Paradise is pleased to once again donate a prize for the event. See the extract from the Alamo Celiac GIG Newsletter for September, 2010, that is reproduced below:

got guts 2

Below are thumbnails for some pictures taken at the got Guts 5K in 2009. Click on a thumbnail to view the full-size picture:

guts thumbnails

 

The Alamo Celiac GIG Picnic

The Kiolbassa Provision Company, a San Antonio-based family business, hosted a picnic for Alamo Celiac GIG at Chicken Paradise, the home of San Antonio Celiac Support Group Chair Anne Barfield. Kiolbassa provided their delicious sausages plus brisket, pinto beans, cole slaw, and potato salad- from Bolner's Meat Market and all gluten free! Bill Taylor, weatherman for KENS TV, Channel 5, did the weather forecast from the picnic and interviewed several people on the air. The event gave a tremendous opportunity to generate celiac awareness and has resulted in a number of people contacting Alamo Celiac for more information.

Below are some thumbnail images for the photos taken that day. If you would like to look at a picture, just click on it's thumbnail. A larger version of the picture will pop up in a new window that you should close when you are done.

kiolbassa thumbnails

 

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Other Links of Interest

 

alamo celiac

Alamo Celiac GIG® is a Branch of the Gluten Intolerance Group® of North America. The Group's mission is to provide support to persons with gluten intolerances, including celiac disease, in order for them to live healthy lives. Members of Alamo Celiac GIG exchange information and discuss medical and dietary topics relating to gluten sensitivity at support group meetings and through the branch newsletter. Meetings are held quarterly in Austin, Corpus Christi, and San Antonio. Click on the Alamo Celiac logo to visit their web site.


 

gig

The Gluten Intolerance Group®, also known as GIG®, is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization funded by private donations. The mission of the Gluten Intolerance Group of North America® is to provide support to persons with gluten intolerances, including celiac disease, dermatitis herpetiformis, and other gluten sensitivities, in order to live healthy lives. Click on the Gluten Intolerance Group logo to visit their website.


 

gfrap

The Gluten-Free Restaurant Awareness Program (GFRAP) is a program of Gluten Intolerance Group of N.A. proudly serving over 1620 participating independently owned and chain restaurants. GFRAP restaurants gain support, knowledge and local publicity as they seek to provide persons with gluten intolerance a dining experience they can enjoy with confidence. You can click on the logo to visit their website.

 

nfca

The National Foundation for Celiac Awareness is dedicated to raising awareness and funding for celiac disease that will advance research, education and screening amongst medical professionals, children and adults. Click on the logo to visit their website.

 

cd center at columbia

The Celiac Disease Center was established within the Department of Medicine at Columbia University in 2001. Its mission is to redefine the future of celiac disease and treatment on an ongoing basis, through continuing advances in research, patient care, and physician and public education. Click on their logo their website.

 

mayo clinic

The Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, is ranked No. 1 for the treatment of digestive disorders in the U.S. News & World Report "Best Hospitals" rankings. The Clinic's research program, sponsored by the National Institutes of Health, focuses on all aspects of celiac disease. Click on the logo to visit their website.

 

center for celiac research

The University of Maryland Center for Celiac Disease has a threefold mission. First, it is to increase the quality of life for celiac patients by increasing awareness about celiac disease among health care professionals and the public. Second, it is to perform cutting edge research. Third, it is to offer the best comprehensive clinical care to both pediatric and adult patients with celiac disease. Click on their logo to visit their website.

 

wangen

Dr. Stephen Wangen is known as "The Gluten-Free Doctor." His objective is to cure, not just treat, IBS and related illnesses. He is the founder of the IBS Treatment Center in Seattle, Washington- the first and only clinic of its kind. He successfully cured his own IBS and has gone on to successfully treat the digestive problems of others! Click on the logo at left to visit his website. He wrote about his stay at Chicken Paradise and in San Antonio in his blog, and you can have a look at what he had to say here. You can also find his book "Healthier Without Wheat" on Amazon.com.

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