Gluten Free in the South Sound


  • I’ve been eating mostly gluten-free lately. Like many people, I’m discovering that I feel better and have more energy when avoiding gluten in my diet. It’s hard as a food writer to avoid it completely, since it’s in practically everything. However, I have been pleasantly surprised at the gluten free options in South Sound restaurants, cafes and bakeries. There are not as many gluten free friendly places as I’d like, but it’s a great start. Note: Not all of the below restaurants are suitable with someone with Celiac disease or a highly sensitive gluten allergy, as some restaurants may have more cross contamination with gluten foods than others. Be sure to check with them if you have concerns about cross contamination.  Restaurant menus tend to change often, so please be sure to check with the restaurants listed before dining in case their gluten free availability has changed. I update this list with your suggestions, and as I discover more places, so send your favorites my way! Continue reading →

Hotel Murano Earns Four Star Rating from Forbes!

I am thrilled to announce Tacoma’s own Hotel Murano has earned a Four Star rating from Forbes. Hotel Murano is Tacoma’s first ever Four Star rated property, and one of only four in Washington state to earn this rating.

It was a privilege to write about Hotel Murano for Forbes. On a recent stay at the hotel, my husband and I experienced some of that Four Star treatment first hand, and I can tell you the honor is well deserved.

The hotel is perfect for a staycation, and a delight for out-of-town guests. When you visit Tacoma, be sure to check out my recommendations for Forbes Travel Guide on what to see, do and where to eat.

Congratulations, Hotel Murano — now everyone will know what a truly world class hotel you are!

*Photo courtesy Hotel Murano

Fancy Date Night, Tacoma Style.

I am, by no means, a high roller. That said, every once in a while, a splurge is in order. A time to enjoy the finer things in life and spoil yourself a little.

My husband and I were due for a fancy pants date night, and on Friday, we did it right with dinner at El Gaucho Tacoma and a stay at Hotel Murano. A staycation, you might call it. I call it an excuse to dress up emerge from my hoodie-wearing cocoon of our seemingly endless gray PNW days.

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Local Specials Today for Fat Tuesday

I have a serious craving for gumbo today. It’s bad. I’m contemplating how to leave work to procure some, but that’s another story.

Here are some Cajun/Creole and Mardi Gras specials around the area today for Fat Tuesday! Get ’em while you can!

  • Morso Wine Bar | 9014 Peacock Hill Ave, Gig Harbor | 253-530-3463 | 4 p.m.-10 p.m.
    Get some: Shrimp & grits, crawfish gumbo, red beans and rice, king cake.
  • Doyle’s Public House | 208 St. Helens Ave. S., Tacoma | 253-272-7468 | 11 a.m.-2 a.m.
    Get some: Shrimp po’boys, blackened chicken & bacon caesar, chicken & sausage jambalaya, chicken & shrimp gumbo, red beans and rice.
  • The Hub | 203 Tacoma Ave. S., Tacoma | 253-683-4606 | 11 a.m.-11 p.m.
    Get some: Catfish po’boys, chicken, sausage and seafood gumbo.
  • The Swiss | 1904 S. Jefferson Ave., Tacoma | 253-572-2821 | 11 a.m.-2 a.m.
    Get some: Catfish, red beans and rice, gumbo.
  • Tides Tavern | 2925 Harborview Drive, Gig Harbor | 253-858-3982 | 11 a.m.-10 p.m.
    Get some: Gumbo.
  • Babblin’ Babs Bistro |  2724 N. Proctor, Tacoma | 253-761-9099 | 8 a.m.-2 p.m.
    Get some: Red bean and rice soup with sausage
  • Top of Tacoma | 3529 Mckinley Ave., Tacoma | 253-272-1502 | 2 p.m.-2 a.m.
    Get some: Po’boys, gumbo.
  • Legendary Doughnuts | 2602 6th Ave., Tacoma | 253-327-1327
    Get some: King cake doughnuts
  • Sweet Charley B’s Cupcakery | 111 Market Street NE, Olympia | 360-350-0332 | 11 a.m.-5:30 p.m.
    Get some: King cake cupcakes.

Now Open: Treos

Treos opened today in Old Town in the space formerly occupied by Tully’s. After a dramatic remodel, the cafe has been transformed with cool colors, gorgeous glass tile and modern decor.

Although the space remains a coffee shop, you can also enjoy wine by the glass, craft beer on tap, sandwiches by Mike’s East Coast Sandwiches, pastries and a variety of flatbreads made in-house.

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