As noted in my bio, I’ve got celiac and have a generally rough time eating out. In listing ingredients, menus are imprecise at best and lousy at worst. Asking the waiters and waitresses is often no better than reading the menu and guessing at food content. Outback Steakhouse is the only chain that I know of that has a gluten-free menu available, but they’re a little expensive and I’m not a big fan of steaks.
Even if you find a menu item that doesn’t appear to have any gluten and the waiter swears doesn’t as well, there’s always the danger of cross-contamination where your gluten-free food is cooked on the same surface, with the same tools, or near enough to some glutenous foods that you get a little surprise. To be sure, you don’t die from it, but let’s just say that you suddenly start doing that “gotta go, gotta go, gotta go right now” dance.
Recently, a local channel did a special, hard-hitting report on celiac featuring the local celiac support group and a local restauranteur with the disease. I will finally dine somewhere that not only understands about celiac but will put forth the effort to prevent cross-contamination. Glorious! I’m going there for lunch today. I’ll update with a general report (in case anyone cares).