Restaurants, cafés, pubs and producers offering gluten-free produce in Hampshire
- Credit: Archant
Coeliac disease affects 1 in 100 people, and many more are seeing the health benefits after waving goodbye to gluten. Here are just a few of the county’s cafes, pubs and producers who are embracing the gluten free way
The brunch stop
House Twenty8 is a family-run coffee house, juice bar and vegetarian café in the pretty village of Sherfield on Loddon, a few miles from Basingstoke.
Owner, Sarah Fannon says: “I was looking around at other coffee shops and no one was offering homemade gluten free cakes and savoury options. I decided it’s very important to offer this on the menu, as so many people have food allergies or choose to go GF for health benefits – and it’s vital to meet the customer’s needs.
The pub lunch
Towards Basingstoke, Bartons Mill in Old Basing offer an extensive gluten free menu. Feast on delights such as the sea bass fillet baked with a herb citrus butter on roasted Mediterranean vegetable provençal, pub classics such as home-cooked honey glazed ham with eggs, tomato and chips, and delightful puddings, such as the chocolate brownie with walnuts.
Gluten free dog lovers should head to The Compass Inn, in Winsor. Not only is it the first totally gluten free pub in the New Forest, it also claims to be the most dog friendly pub in area. Landlady, Mop Draper, who is gluten intolerant herself, says: “The pub going gluten free has been really good for all coeliacs, not just in our area but they come from miles around. Some stay in a B&B just to be able to eat at the pub! It is so very worrying for everyone with the complaint because nine out of ten times you eat out, you are ill.
“Everyone gets very excited when they come here, as they can choose from the whole menu and not just settle for a jacket potato! Our menu is as extensive as it was before we went 100% gluten free."
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The bread winner
Mother and daughter team, Judy & Jenny Hicks, from Hampshire Gluten Free Company make delicious sweet and savoury treats from their 400 year old farm cottage, overlooking Watership Down. The small scale operation means everything is cooked by the pair, so there is absolutely no risk of contamination from wheat and gluten.
“Our savoury pies are particularly popular,” says Judy. We also had one customer who said our bread was life changing! I suppose bread is such a staple in today’s diet and it can be difficult to go without it. The good thing about ours is that it doesn’t crumble, like other GF breads, but as it has no preservatives, I recommend you cut it up and freeze it, and take slices out as you need them.”
Those with a sweet tooth can choose from battenburg, chocolate, coffee, vanilla sponge and carrot cake – and made-to-order celebration cakes which daughter Jenny decorates all by hand. Gluten, wheat, dairy and egg free cakes are also available.
The pizza joint
One of the toughest things about going gluten free is giving up the foods you love the most, or finding tasty alternatives that you can get excited about, that aren’t just ‘make do’. With The Stable in both Winchester and Southampton, pizza is definitely on the menu!
Co-founder Andy Briggs says: “With the rise of coeliac disease in the UK we wanted to be able to offer our customers the opportunity to still be able to enjoy our delicious pizzas and dessert with peace of mind. The great thing about our menu is that all our pizzas can be made using a gluten free base. They take a little longer to cook but they are worth the wait. Most of our ciders are gluten free too so what better way to wash your pizza down than with a delicious glass of cider.”
The fish & chips saviour
There are times in life where only fish & chips will do. Whistler’s Fish and Chips offer coeliac-friendly gluten free take away at Westbourne every Monday & Saturday, Hayling Island on Wednesdays and everyday in Fareham for both eat in and take away. The teams are fully trained on how to cook and serve GF foods, including dedicated fryers, utensils and oil and they even promise tasty gluten free batter!
On the Isle of Wight, head to Corries Cabin in Cowes for delicious GF fish & chips with the tastiest home-made tartar sauce.
Hartleys Fish & Chips in Hartley Wintney currently have a gluten free menu featuring all the classic dishes. “It has proved popular and we get people coming from not just in the village, but from Hook, Yateley and Fleet.”
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