Category: Chicago

Range — A Chicago Farm-to-Table, Allergy Friendly Gem

Last night for Ben’s birthday {happy birthday, love!}, I made a reservation for the two of us at Range, located in the Lincoln Park neighborhood.

I had corresponded with Megan, their general manager, via email over the last several weeks after noting all the GF and VEG symbols on their menu.

Now, I’d lived in LP from 2005-2015 and Range opened in 2013, but I’d never checked it out!

After a lovely email exchange where Megan went above and beyond to run all of my allergens by the kitchen, propose many safe options, and book a reservation for me, I was eager to check it all out.

After we were seated, our kind waitress came over with a print-out of the email from Megan, complete with my name in caps and highlighted. What a relief to see everyone was informed– from back-of-house to the front!

I opted for their grass-fed burger on lettuce and herb fries {dedicated fryer with canola oil!}, though even their standard mac n’ cheese and chicken tenders were GF! That’s the way to do it.

While we were waiting for our meals to arrive, our waitress arrived with ketchup and spicy ketchup by 78 Brand, a local company in-line with the farm-to-table experience. Before I could even say a word, she said “I opened these new bottles for you just over there at the bar; no one has used them!” THEY KNEW TO OPEN NEW BOTTLES OF CONDIMENTS. I knew I was safe.

When I say this hamburger was one of the most delicious burgers I’d ever had, cooked to a perfect medium, I’d be understating my experience. Not to mention, that spicy ketchup was absolutely incredible. 

Hey, 78 Brand, I’m on the hunt for your delicious condiments!

Range Chicago Burger

There are many safe options for a variety of food allergies, and the dinner menu is ~90% gluten free as-is! In the summer, Range open up their whole front {looks like floor-to-ceiling windows, but are actually doors!} for fresh air and we can’t wait to return.

Thank you again, Range team. You’ve got a lifetime fan.

Take it easy, but take it.


PS- They also have a brunch menu with copious GF options! I’ll check it out soon.

Ema: Chicago Restaurant Review

Located in River North, Ema is the hot new spot for Mediterranean food and one of the newest editions to the Lettuce Entertain You Group.

No matter what, when I walk in the door of a Lettuce restaurant, I feel entirely safe. With eggs newly on my strict cannot-have list, I’ve been a bit more anxious dining out than usual, but all concerns were easily diminished with a kind waitress last week at Ema.

Though we could not get a reservation between 5:30 and 7:30 on a Wednesday night (hot spot, I told you!) there is an area of tables for walk-ins and between that space, the rain, and a major Cubs game (Go Cubbies!), we were seated immediately upon walking in at about 6pm.

This restaurant is tapas-style but with the standard Mediterranean offerings–they suggested 2-3 plates per person at each table to share.

We ordered the spicy hummus (which came with gluten free, vegan house-made crackers!), cauliflower romanesco (with yogurt and honey), the lamb-beef kebab, and the salmon kebab.

The star of the show was absolutely the cauliflower, which is typically the most underrated veggie of them all. This beauty was gorgeous on the plate and filled with bold flavors and a variety of textures.


Next visit, I’ll opt to order more from the vegetable plates over the standard kebab plates–sadly, they were only 1 kebab per order and the plate was mainly rice (which would throw my BG for a rollercoaster).

Will absolutely return, and soon.

Take it easy, but take it.


Piccolo Sogno: Chicago Restaurant Review

Though I’d been a long time ago, this past weekend I returned to Piccolo Sogno to celebrate my mom’s birthday–with a lengthier allergy list to care for.

From the moment our waiter came to our table, we were treated with kindness and simple assurance that everything would be perfectly handled, and he was absolutely right.

I ordered a delicious salmon dish {see photo!} with a side of cauliflower mash {I’m loving the cauliflower trend–low carb replacement for high carb things!}.

It was absolutely beautiful to look at and I ate every last bite.



Our waiter even ensured that I could partake in dessert with the most adorable birthday berries I’ve ever seen.


If you’re looking for something special in the city of Chicago, ensure you get a reservation and try to be seated on the patio this summer {can only guarantee when you’ve arrived for your reservation}–the ambiance is not to be missed, and neither is their perfect attention to food allergy needs.

Take it easy, but take it.


Mity Nice: Chicago Restaurant Review

I had the pleasure of dining at Mity Nice, located on the mezzanine level of Water Tower Place on Michigan Ave., for lunch with my grandparents last week. As always, I placed a quick call prior to dining and the staff assured me that my dietary needs would be easily met.

The manager on duty spent excessive time with my table, as well as our waiter who was very well trained in allergy protocol. For my first time dining at any restaurant, I always order something simple enough that I can decipher every ingredient on my plate when it arrives. My request for salmon with EVOO+S/P cooked on foil and steamed vegetables was executed flawlessly (including an extra precaution of making the veggies in the microwave to avoid using pots that had the potential for cross contamination–which embarrassed the manager but I was thrilled to have safe, steamed veggies!)


I will definitely return in the near future, and am happy to add to my growing list of celiac-safe spots to eat in Chicago.

Take it easy, but take it.


Burger Bar Chicago: Restaurant Review

I’ll admit it: I got really excited when I saw an email from the University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center inviting me to the first-ever Chicago meet-up for people with celiac–like might have jumped out of my chair excited.

Okay, now you may be asking what I asked myself–how the heck does a big city like Chicago not already have a celiac meet-up?! Well, who knows.

Nonetheless, I’d never been to the meeting spot {Burger Bar Chicago} and even glancing at their website/menu had me a bit weary of whether they were celiac safe, or gluten free fad safe. The menu simply has a gluten free bun option, without indication of precautions taken/not taken, etc. I had to stretch outside of my comfort zone and put my trust in the fact that my own celiac center picked the darn place but I still called to ensure other allergens could be taken care of.

They were able to give me anything other than the french fries (made in soybean oil, but 100% gluten free for others who are curious!), so I customized my hamburger {see that stack below!} and had a side salad. I requested my hamburger be made on foil, out of an abundance of caution for my hyper-sensitive celiac stomach, and the request was easily accommodated.


It was a tasty, fun time and over FIFTY PEOPLE showed up!

Celiac people+family/friends/kids all chowing down on some delicious, safe hamburgers is my kinda night.

I’ll definitely be returning.

Take it easy, but take it.