Tag Archives: Gluten Free

New Lunch Spot: Kiwi Cafe & Smoothies in Wakefield

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Seating at Kiwi Café & Smoothies

Every once in a while there is a place I have on my list to check out and for one reason or another I just takes me forever to make it there. This was the case with Kiwi Cafe & Smoothies located in Wakefield by the Rex Wellness Center and Harris Teeter off Falls of Neuse Road. A friend on twitter alerted me to their opening several months ago and I’ve had them on my radar for a while. A few weeks ago I finally had the chance to check them out for lunch. I’m really glad I finally checked them out because I’ve been looking for a new lunch spot and I was very impressed with their offerings.

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Kale and Apple Salad

Kiwi Café offers a wide range of salads, soups, sandwiches and smoothies. What really sets them apart is that the ingredients they use are in many cases non-gmo or organic. They also offer gluten free breads, pastries, and cookies which can be hard to find in this area. My wife ordered the Kale and Apple salad which included fresh kale, spinach, sliced apples, carrots, berries, goat cheese, pecans, with a honey lemon-lime dressing. The salad was very fresh and made for a great lunch.

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Smoked Turkey and Gruyere

I ordered the Smoked Turkey and Gruyere sandwich which is comprised of freshly sliced smoked turkey breast, gruyere, cranberries, arugula-spinach mix, pecans, basil aioli. My sandwich was delicious and I would definitely order it again. I think it is important to point out that I ordered my sandwich as a panini, but what I got I’d describe as a lightly toasted sandwich, not really a panini. Still it was quite good. I kind of wish it came with chips or a pickle but to be honest I could do with a few less chips in my life.

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Coffee Counter at Kiwi Cafe

Kiwi also has a full coffee bar offering a full range of coffee and espresso drinks. They use an organic coffee from a roaster out in Greensboro called Fortuna. While I find this coffee to be nice, I have to admit it would be even better to see them use one of Raleigh’s local roasters to keep with their stay “local” theme. They also offer a selection of fruit smoothies. I haven’t had a chance to try one yet, but plan to on my next visit.

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Kiwi Café & Smoothies in Wakefield

My wife and I both really enjoyed our meals and I definitely plan to go back for lunch again soon. It is nice to have a locally owned place to grab a healthy lunch and I definitely recommend giving them a try. Kiwi Café is open Monday through Friday 8am-6pm and Saturday 8am-4pm. They are closed on Sunday.

Kiwi Cafe’ & Smoothies

11211 Galleria Ave
Raleigh, NC 27614 (map)
website: http://www.kiwicafeandsmoothies.com
facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kiwicafeandsmoothies
twitter: @kiwicaferaleigh

 

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Gluten & Allergen Free Wellness Event in Durham – August 17th

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The second annual Raleigh/Durham Gluten & Allergen Free Wellness Event will be held at the Durham Convention Center Saturday August 17 from 10am-4pm. The event is open to the community, and caters to those who avoid multiple allergens, such as gluten, dairy, soy, nuts, grains, etc. Admission is $10 per adult; kids 13 and under are free, and college students receive $3 off admission with student identification. Those who purchase their tickets online are automatically entered into a drawing for a gift basket from one of the event’s sponsors. You can purchase tickets online here.

Event Details
Many of the hottest and newest gluten-free foods, including products from more than 20 local vendors, will fill the exhibit hall. Sampling of gluten-free/allergen-free foods begins at 10 a.m. and ends at 4 p.m. with guest speakers and cooking demonstrations rounding out the day. Products will also be available for sale, so attendees should come prepared to take advantage of show prices.

Local Vendors
Bella Monica Flatbread Company, Bone Suckin’ Sauce, Ginger Lemon Girl, Kalo Foods, The Celiac Cakery, Tonya’s Cookie Company, and Virtuous Living.

National vendors
Against the Grain Gourmet, Bakery on Main, Earth Balance, Kinnikinnick Foods, Living Without Magazine, Luce’s Gluten-Free Artisan Bread, New Planet Beer, and Simply Gluten Free Magazine. A complete list of participating vendors can be found on their website.

Lectures & Demonstrations
The event will also feature lectures from Brandy Wendler, Lisa Stimmer, Certified Gluten Practitioner, Certified Natural Gourmet Chef, and Certified Nutritionist, Wendy Perry, Taylor Miller, owner of Glutenway blog, and Debbie Jongkind, registered dietitian.

Cooking demonstrations are still being scheduled, but one will be taught by Chef Tracey Bloom of FreeCuisine.

Event Organizers & Sponsors
Organized by ECHO Event Solutions (ECHO), the event is sponsored by Udi’s Gluten Free, Glutino Food Group, Enjoy Life Foods, Bone Suckin’ Sauce, Earth Family, Gluten-Free Buyer’s Guide and Earth Fare. This is the second year for the gluten-free event in Raleigh/Durham, and a crowd of more than 1,000 is expected to attend.

A percentage of the proceeds from this year’s event will be donated to local gluten and allergen-free support efforts. The 2013 Raleigh/Durham Gluten & Allergen Free Wellness Event will be held at the Durham Convention Center. For more information visit the website at http://raleighglutenfreeexpo.blogspot.com/ and the event facebook page https://www.facebook.com/events/394177893993190/.

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Take A Break & Visit Respite Cafe In Durham

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Respite Cafe in Durham, NC

This month my tour of the great local coffee scene takes me to Durham for a visit to Respite Cafe. Respite is a relatively new coffee shop in downtown Durham owned and operated by local resident and Duke alumnus Courtney Brown. The Cafe is conveniently located along Duke Street just around the Corner from Brightleaf Square (map).

I have had Respite on my radar for a while now and was fortunate enough to pay several visits over the past few months. I find the cafe’ to be a great place to relax and recharge whenever I am over in Durham exploring downtown.

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Respite Cafe

Respite is housed in a building constructed back in 1929 and its interior is a little different than what you typically see in other local coffee shops, with its blue and white painted walls and original black & white checkerboard tile floor. However, the style fits the building perfectly and breathes new life into its space by creating a cafe with a 1920’s vibe infused with a modern touch.  I find the interior calming and relaxing making it a great spot for catching up on work while enjoying my coffee.

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Comfy Seating Options

There are several different seating options in the cafe, ranging from large tables that seat 4-5 people to cozy table tops, and comfy couches for relaxing along the window and in a smaller more private alcove in the back of the cafe. Their is even a small meeting room in the back that can be reserved for study groups or business meetings.  On my more recent visits I’ve noticed Respite is a popular destination for Duke students .  However, although it is a great place for studying it is also a great place for relaxing and conversation, lending the space more towards a community “living room” vibe in general which I like.

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My Latte

Respite serves locally roasted Carrboro Coffee which is one of my favorite local coffee roasters. Their high quality beans make for incredible espresso drinks that I find to be rich and well balanced. The organic homeland creamery milk Respite uses to make their lattes, my favorite drink, gives them a silky smooth texture that I love. Respite offers a full line of coffee and specialty espresso drinks. You can purchase coffees prepared via various different methods including traditional pour-overs and the Chemex method. In addition to great coffee, they also serve an extensive offering of 20+ different organic teas from Rishi Tea.

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Incredible Baked Goods from Local Vendors

Complimenting the great coffee and tea at Respite are the abundant local food products they sell. This is one of the great highlights of the shop.  Their pastry shelves are always filled with offerings from local and regional bakers including some amazing deserts from the people at Crumb in Raleigh that can be best described as edible works of art. Other baked goods featured are Kelly G’s cupcakes from Carrboro and Kismet artisan crackers from Durham. I’ve also recently learned that respite now also offers gluten free vegan baked goods from Zen Cat Bakery, cookies from Kukia’s Cookies, and gourmet popcorn from Durham’s own Mad Popper. Offerings vary weekly but there are always lots of great food options to pair with your drink. You can view a full list of their locally sourced products on their website here.

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Lots of Natural Lighting Provided by Windows

I enjoy coffee shops that feature a lot of natural lighting and love all the windows at Respite that look out along the sidewalk and Duke Street. It allows for natural sunlight to pour into the shop giving it warm feel that helps create a nice transition from the quite interior to the hustle and bustle of the outside world. On my visits I often found myself staring out the window daydreaming as I watched the world pass by as people make their way to work and class. This is exactly why I like spending time in a coffee shop like this. It isn’t just about getting in and out with a great cup of coffee, it is also about the experience and taking time to enjoy your surroundings.

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The Menu

I think Respite is a great addition to the blossoming local coffee scene in the Triangle and look forward to visiting them again the next time I explore Durham. Respite’s Falls/Winter hours are 8am-8pm Monday through Saturday. For more information about Respite check out their website and facebook page or follow them on twitter at @Respite Cafe.

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The Irregardless Cafe – Healthy Dining in Downtown Raleigh

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Last weekend my wife and I headed into downtown Raleigh to have dinner at the Irregardless Café for her birthday. The café is mainstay of Raleigh with a loyal following which has lead to its continued success over the past 35 years. We enjoy going there because they often have live music entertainment on the weekends and offer a wide variety of items from including pasta, fish, poultry, beef, and lamb, most prepared using organic ingredients. They are also one of the few restaurants in the area known for offering vegetarian, vegan, and gluten free options on their menu. You can check out their menus on their website here.

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On the night we dined there it was fairly busy, but we were seated at a table right away because we had reservation (not needed, but a good idea for weekend visits). The clientele spans a wide range of ages and it isn’t uncommon to see tables for two on a date night next to a larger round table with a family out for the evening. The restaurant has a warm ambiance with what is typically a talkative and lively crowd. The musical offerings vary from week to week ranging from acoustic performances, to smooth jazz and vocals. Sometimes they even move the tables aside to open up the dance floor so people can “cut the rug” after their meal. On our most recent visit there was a string trio playing the modern day tunes on the violin and electric bass. During one of their breaks wandered around the restaurant playing table-side and even plucked off a “Happy Birthday” song for another lucky customer.

Going to the Irregardless Café is a rare treat for my wife and I, but a must see for anybody living in Raleigh looking to eat at a quality restaurant with a local flare.

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Where To Find Gluten Free Pizza In Raleigh

Celiac disease is a digestive disease that damages the small intestine and interferes with absorption of nutrients from food. People who have celiac disease cannot tolerate gluten, a protein in wheat, rye, and barley. With that, things like regular pizza are usually off the menu for those with Celiac but fortunately there are “gluten free” pizza options in the Triangle. 

So far I am only aware of places in Raleigh that sell gluten free pizzas, but I will update this post in the future if I discover any others. The three pizza establishments that currently sell gluten free pizza in Raleigh are Lily’s Pizza, Zpizza, and Bella Monica. I have tried the pizza from the first two and they are quite good (gluten free Zpizza pictured above).  I have not yet had the Bella Monica GF pizza but I hear it is quite good. 

You can check out  local blog Gluten Free Raleigh for more information about living gluten free in the Triangle.

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