Gluten Free Foodies
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I recently met Chef Sarah and
Stacia Williams, Director of Marketing and Communication - Mayflower Park Hotel.
I had a chance to walk around the hotel with Stacia to take in the beautiful holiday decorations. It was so fun to see the twinkling lights in Oliver's Lounge as the guests gathered to enjoy their special holiday hot toddies and specialty beverages.
Stacia and I walked next door to meet Executive Chef Sarah Lorenzen.
It was so nice to sit down and have a chat with Chef Sarah and
to get to know her food story and how the Gluten Free menu came to be.
Sarah told me as a child growing up in San Francisco, CA, her passion for gardening and cooking began around, age of 11. She used to cook dinner for the family when her mother went back to work full time. Sarah also told me that she had food allergies to eggs and dairy as a child. She eventually outgrew them when she became an adult. She remembers how hard it was as a child to find the easy foods she could eat. Sarah said her mother's "carob s'mores were just not as special as all the other kids thought they were." She learned how to cook, bake and realized her dream was to become a chef and so she went to culinary school after high school.
She met Chef Wayne Johnson, (formerly of Andaluca) at Parc 55 Hotel in San Francisco as an apprentice. When Chef Wayne moved to Seattle to work for Andaluca, he hired Sarah a year later to join the culinary team. Sarah moved up to Seattle to join the Andaluca team 13 years ago. Sarah says she has enjoyed working many positions within the company over the years. Now that she is Executive Chef, as of a year ago, it really has been a dream come true.
Chef Sarah creates all of the menus for the restaurants and food services including catering and room service. Some employees, including Stacia, shared their Gluten Intolerance and food allergies with the culinary staff in the past few years. Since Gluten Free food is one of their most requested items, they decided to create a separate Gluten Free menu to assist the guests and service staff by giving a
printed menu free of guessing and gluten.
I can't tell you the last time I have been so excited to be at an exquisite restaurant, holding a menu that had more choices than just salads. This Gluten Free meal at Andaluca was by far
the best meal I have had in a long time.
So you can imagine how thrilled I was when I found out that you can have a meeting, special event or wedding at the hotel and Chef Sarah's kitchen can create the perfect Gluten Free or specific allergy free catering menu for you.
One of the best things about staying at the Mayflower Park Hotel is their room service menu! Just imagine a full day of shopping or playing tourist with your friends or family. Going back to your room and kicking back while you ponder the menu and decide which Gluten Free menu items, from Andaluca, you want delivered to your room!
That just sounds so decadent and divine to me!
Of course if you would rather go down to Andaluca, for breakfast or dinner, it is a lovely romantic restaurant with warm colorful decor and intimate seating.
Chef Sarah said that the majority of their menu with its Spanish influence was already Gluten Free. She learned more about Gluten Free ingredients over the years and how to prevent cross-contamination.
Guests at the restaurant request a variety of changes due to their food allergies including shellfish, dairy and nuts. She says her kitchen is meticulous about cleaning after the preparation of each meal. Some of her staff has food allergies, so they have a first hand knowledge as to the importance of providing a safe dining experience.
I must say that everyone that I met at the restaurant was so professional and courteous. The minute I walked in the door they ask me if I would like the Gluten Free menu.
I love love love holding my own special Gluten Free menu with so many delicious choices
and that it is hard to decide!
Let's just say, I couldn't decided so I tried just about everything
and I am about to share all of the delectable details with you.
I love nothing more than standing around the kitchen
baking or cooking something deliciously Gluten Free,
while catching up with friends!
Gluten Free savory seasoned dough
balsamic sweet onion jam!
The Maninis Gluten Free Multiuso flour is
my favorite Gluten Free flour mix that I must always have in my Gluten Free kitchen!