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The Stars Have Aligned…..

This morning was my first run since my injury where I felt like I was actually running and not making jogging motions at a walking pace. It was surreal. I was scared at first that I was going too fast, but then I settled into a nice pace. Still following the return to running plan and I am at about 11:00 min/mile right now. Funny how that felt fast! LOL! I can’t believe how good I felt (mentally) when I was done running today. I have missed that.

While I was running I was reading the September issue of Runner’s World and came across an article titled “Good Grief“. This article is much like my “Acceptance” post I wrote back in June. That seems like such a long time ago! My foot is still feeling good, but has a little achiness to it. I suspect that the muscles aren’t used to running anymore and have to adjust. I would bet that is one of the reasons why this part of the return to running plan only allows running every other day. I will be swimming on my “off” days. By off days, I mean non-running days. I am also taking 2 full days off per week to allow my foot and legs to rest & recover.

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Wanted to share a brief tidbit about my dinner out last night with Aaron. We went to Eddie Merlot’s. Eddie’s is a higher end steak house, much like Ruth’s Chris or Hyde Park. I didn’t think eating gluten-free would be an issue there, as most higher end restaurants make most of their food in house, therefore knowing exactly what goes into it and what is safe. I have to say that for the first time in a long time, I was really nervous about eating out. The server didn’t really seem to know what gluten was – yikes! I asked to speak with the chef or manager – the chef was off – double yikes! The server had gone back to the kitchen to ask what salad dressings were gluten-free and came back to tell me to stay away from the blue cheese, maple vinaigrette and honey champagne vinaigrette. According to him, the balsamic vinaigrette was probably okay, as was oil & vinegar. It was at this point that I asked to speak with the manager. I was interested to know what was in those dressings that contained gluten. I don’t like blue cheese, so that wasn’t an issue, but what about the other vinaigrettes? The manager said all of the dressings were gluten-free except for the blue cheese. While this should have made me feel better, it didn’t. Why would one of the kitchen staff tell the server otherwise? I asked about the ingredients of the balsamic vinaigrette & determined that was safe. I asked about other menu items -sushi, steaks, salmon and sides. While I really wanted sushi, I didn’t feel confident ordering it there. I asked about the cedar plank salmon, which apparently is prepared with an orange glaze that I didn’t get the ingredients for, so I opted to have it dry with a little salt & pepper. We also ordered a baked potato and broccoli (sans bearnaise – as the manager said it contained gluten). Dessert was the star of the show….watermelon sorbet garnished with kiwi & mint leaves. This was to-die-for! I may go back just for dessert and wine! ;) The food was good, but it is hard to go someplace and spend so much money & have food that I can make more flavorful at home or get someplace else. Hyde Park, Mitchell’s Steak House & Ruth’s Chris either have a gluten-free menu or are well versed and can tell you which items to order that are safe. These items have the accompanying sauces & such. It seems to me that Eddie Merlot’s is behind the times and could only benefit from developing a gluten-free menu. The server did apologize at the end, though it isn’t his fault. He did mention that the chef wanted to get a gluten-free menu in place as they get asked about one on a regular basis.

Have you or anyone you know successfully dined at Eddie Merlot’s gluten-free? I would love to hear about it.

4 comments to The Stars Have Aligned…..

  • Unfortunately, I had a very similar experience at Angelo and Maxie's Steakhouse here in NYC that didn't end as uneventfully as yours. I spoke to the wait staff and no one could really give me a clear answer about what exactly some ingredients were. Yes it was busy, but I was paying customer just like everyone else in the place. Here I was spending a lot of money on a nice steak dinner and I wound up having to leave immediately due to "glutenting." I didn't leave my house for 2 days afterwards due to the confusion and lack of knowledge of the wait staff. It is frustrating when the kitchen and wait staff have mixed communications and leave you with that sense of confusion and worry.

  • Kim

    Erin,

    I am so sorry! That is horrible! I hope you sent a letter or email. :( You make an excellent point – you are a paying customer. I would rather a restaurant to tell me that they can't accommodate me and keep me safe, if they are unsure.

  • so glad to hear you're moving better. I was a runner (a decade plus ago) and remember how hard it was to have to stop!

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