Food Allergy Counseling

Food Allergy Counseling
Sloane Miller, Food Allergy Counselor (Picture © Noel Malcolm 2013)

Monday, November 24, 2008

Uno Chicago Grill Goes Gluten-Free

(Reprinted with permission)



Uno Chicago Grill® is the nation’s first casual dining chain to offer a gluten-free pizza, currently testing the new menu item in its Northeastern Region. The new pizza debuts during Gluten-Free Diet Awareness Month (November) and has received a very positive reaction from guests who suffer from celiac disease, which affects approximately one percent of the population.

The company’s gluten-free menu has over 12 items ranging from entrĂ©es, salads, sides and desserts. For guest convenience and safety, Uno clearly labels menu items with ingredients that are linked to the most common food allergies, such as fish/shellfish, soy, tree nuts/peanuts, egg, milk and wheat/gluten. Diners can also preview the menu and nutritional information online via the company’s website at www.unos.com.

The new gluten-free pizza is being tested at Uno Chicago Grill locations in Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Massachusetts (excluding Worcester, Springfield/Holyoke, and Dedham).

“Thus far, indications have been extremely favorable, and sales are exceeding our expectations,” notes Rick Hendrie, senior vice president of marketing for Uno. “We hope to roll it out to all stores in 2009.”


I spoke with the publicist who said Uno is also working on a frozen GF pizza for your local supermarket. Meanwhile, I’m waiting to hear more details about their food allergen awareness information.

Since this glorious GF pizza isn’t happening in NYC yet, GF folks in New England, please let us all know how if you tried it yet...

UPDATE: From Erin of Gluten-Free Fun, the early results from this GF Uno campaign are not great. See this Meetup link.

5 comments:

Michelle said...

I was visiting my family a couple of weekends ago in the Boston area, and regret to report that they screwed up my order and gave me a regular pizza. Needless to say, I was violently ill. They did feel terrible and assured me up and down that this was a freak occurrence and that they have reviewed their protocol over and over, etc. I'm sure many other people have had great experiences, but I can only report on my own.

Allergic Girl said...

thanks for sharing michelle.

Rochelle said...

Maybe the experience varies by location -- we visited the one in Newton Corner, Massachusetts, and had a good experience. I spoke with the manager of the location before we went there, and he explained that they set aside ingredients such as cheese, sauce, pepperoni to minimize the risk of cc (that is why you can't get other toppings on the pizza as of now). You still need to be careful, of course, but we would definitely return.

Michelle said...

We ordered from the Dedham location (which is in fact offering the GF menu as well). I was told, however, that I could get any toppings. Maybe this is another issue besides the "human error" that led me to receive a regular crust. I think it's wonderful that they are offering this-- I'm just saying maybe they need some more time to work out the kinks in the system. I don't want anyone else to suffer like I did.

CeliacChick said...

About two months ago, ironically right before I heard about their gf pizza, I found myself with tourist friends down at the S.St.Seaport Uno's. I had remembered reading on message boards that they had a gf menu...(remember this was before the gf pizza announcement)and sure enough they did! So, that was nice.However, the hostess had known about it, but the bartender didn't. (We sat at the bar.)The menus were grimy, and I saw the bartender take a glass and use it to scoop ice. If you've ever worked in a restaurant...that's a big no-no because if the glass breaks/chips...anyhow...he had already broken a glass before that. (Not in the ice.) Anyhow...sooo...the gf menu was boring. i.e. I could get a burger, but w/out fries. My options were steamed veggies. I'm sorry, but that is boring. I at least want a baked potato with my burger. So,after my unimpressive visit there I decided not to write about the gf pizzas they were serving.
I wish them the best and hope they figure the gf thing out.