Ah…Cheeseburger in Paradise. One of my favorite songs and one of my favorite restaraunts to eat at. I loved this place even before I had to eat gluten-free. The burgers rock! Imagine my surprise the first time I went in there after starting the gluten-free diet and they handed me a gluten-free menu. I swear that I almost fainted. I had gone months without french fries. Yes, I had fries at home, but they weren’t the deep fried yummy potato goodness that you get from a restaraunt. I was in french fry heaven! We started to make CIP a weekly treat, after my daughter’s ice skating class and now, 2+ years later, we are still going at least once per week. I have had the burgers (love the bacon and cheddar burger and fries), Carribean chicken sandwich, Son of a Sailor salad with grilled shrimp, Parrot Beach Salmon and Blackbeard’s Shrimp. I am on a salmon kick now, so I start with the side sald with citrus vinaigrette and then have the blackened salmon and steamed broccoli. I got to know the staff very well at the location we visit. They even went as far as to order in the gluten-free beer, Red Bridge! Jon loves to eat here too. He gets a plain cheeseburger, fries and house salad with the house vinaigrette, which he loves so much he gets extra to take home! He will occasionally get the Jamaican Root Beer sans coconut as a treat. When we go to CIP, we usually have the same server and she knows what we want without us having to tell her. She knows what to watch for and makes sure our food comes out properly. It is so nice to be able to eat out regularly without having to worry about getting sick. Jon is really sensitive and seems to get sick every time we eat at Bonefish, though he still begs to go back. We have yet to have a problem with CIP (knocking on wood). I know it is risky to eat out due to cross contamination issues, but I don’t want to live in a bubble either.
Speaking of eating out. In a few days we are heading to Kings Island for Aaron’s company picnic. They provide lunch, very scary for anyone with any kind of food sensitivity or issue. We plan on brining in a cooler with lunch for Jon and I and a doctor’s note so that we are allowed to bring food in, as it says right on the website that no food or drink may be brought into the park. The kids are really looking forward to going. Let’s hope we don’t have any issues getting the cooler in or Jon and I will be having an awful lot of Graeter’s Ice Cream and Starbucks coffees during the day! LOL! Come to think of it, that doesn’t sound too bad, does it? I plan on packing roast beef sandwiches on the bread that I made yesterday, along with some fresh fruit, baby carrots and chips (either Cool Ranch Doritos or Blue Corn Chips). Maybe I will make the brownie mix I have sitting in the pantry from Trader Joe’s. Ooooh……I bet I can top one of those with a big scoop of ice cream from Graeter’s…..I think I just might! I will probably pack some Lara Bars for snack. Jon’s favorites are chocolate mint, lemon, key lime pie and peanut butter cookie. I love the chocolate coffee, cashew cookie, chocolate, pecan pie, cinnamon roll and gingersnap. I love they are a whole serving of fruit! It is helpful to disguise fruit in any way possible for picky eaters like Jon.