Friday night I met my friend and her coworkers for dinner and drinks in Long Island City. I've lived in Astoria for almost six years and for some reason I hardly ever go out to eat in my neighborhood. This is ridiculous because Queens is the most ethnically diverse area in the world and with it comes some seriously diverse food. It's true. Google it.
We met at Dutch Kills Centraal which isn't exactly in the hippest part of town but the restaurant has a really great vibe, and I never say vibe. The interior is rustic, cozy, and very inviting. According to their site, their concept is local, organic, and delicious cuisine at affordable prices. Concept accomplished.
My friend and her coworkers picked the place and I just assumed I'd make the whole gluten thing work. The waitstaff made it incredibly easy for me. I asked if they had hard cider and the waitress said they had two and described them for me. I asked if they were gluten free and she said she thought so but would double check. I had never heard of either but decided to go with the Crispen. When she brought the Crispen over she pointed to the Certified GF label on the bottle and was just as excited as I was. I really liked the Crispen. So much that I might even say it is my new favorite cider. I love Woodchuck, mostly because they are from Vermont like me, but they can get a bit heavy. Crispen is light, and as the name implies, refreshingly crisp.
For dinner I got a burger sans bun and a side of brussel sprouts. My friend Kristen got a burger with a side of kale. When I told the waitress I didn't want a bun she asked if it was a preference or if I have Celiac so she could let the kitchen know. One million bonus points for her. Not only did I feel safe in her hands, but the food was really good. The burger was well seasoned and I really love brussel sprouts, especially when they are topped with bacon. Kristen's kale was also really good. I will definitely be back to Dutch Kills soon.
Just a note that there is no gluten free menu here and they don't claim to be gluten free friendly. However, I found the waitstaff extremely helpful and ate safely. As with everything, eat at your own risk.