Sunday, May 11, 2014

GFGS Community Calendar: May 2014

As a service to our regular readers and the Celiac community at large, Gluten Free Garden State offers an ongoing list of upcoming events of interest. We feature local happenings, regional events and national programs open to the public. The calendar appears on the second Sunday of each month. Links are posted to Facebook and Twitter using the hashtages #2ndSundaySked and #savetheceliacdate.

Friday, May 16: Spring Flours, 4th annual benefit to support the University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center. Held at Sheraton Chicago Hotel and Towers, the event features more than 25 gluten-free chef stations and a live auction. Additional information at

Sunday, May 18: Celiac Awareness Day with the Philadelphia Phillies features a ball game with a dedicated gluten-free concession stand. Representatives with the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness will be there (200 level) with educational materials and raffles. Go to for more information and ticket purchases.

Saturday-Sunday, May 17-18: Gluten & Allergen Free Expo in Atlanta, Ga. with educational presentations, and products for sampling and purchase. Event runs 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. both days. Parking is free. Go to to purchase tickets and obtain additional information.

Tuesday, May 20: Northern NJ Celiac Disease Support Group Meetup in Paramus, Bergen County. Held 7-9 pm at the Dorothy B. Kraft Center (part of The Valley Hospital) at 15 Essex Rd. Cost is $2 to attend; Children are free. Meetup is open to the public. Agenda to be announced. Click here for more information.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Cheesecake choice

The jury is still out, for this blogger at least, on just how Celiac friendly is the Cheesecake Factory.

I wrote about the impending gluten-free menu last August (, and it was officially introduced in September. Other people living the gluten-free lifestyle have experienced it, although I have not.

Usually, I'll adventurous enough to try nearly any food, so long as its gluten-free. However, I'm hesitant to give Cheesecake Factory a chance, mostly due to the lack of available information and lack of clear answers coming from the chain's corporate folks.

As of this writing, there is no mention of a gluten-free menu on the Cheesecake Factory's website, which serves 8 New Jersey locations. If not for world-of-mouth, potential customers would have no way of knowing it exists. The chain's lack of promotion doesn't exactly elicit confidence.

Orlando Road Trip: Mickey's Very Special Christmas Party

It was Jersey Week in the Orlando area this month, and we were there. We went down to Florida mid-week and stayed for about 10 days, m...