Ok, so I had the most incredible weekend in New York City. I feel so grateful that my travels throughout the years have connected me to some really incredible people who live in the best cities, i.e. NYC. When the time came for a visit, I began researching my top picks for gluten-free restaurants, bars, wellness studios and cool hotspots. I look back and can’t really believe how much I jammed into 3.5 days but the adrenaline from the city that never sleeps kept me going.
What I love most about NYC is the energy. It’s eclectic, inspiring, innovative, bustling, yet grounding all at the same time. Walking the streets energizes me and I find myself getting completely lost in my own fairytales. It’s a pretty magical place, if you allow it to be.
I have been to NYC numerous times and yet every time is different. My interests have changed over the years also, so I have refined my priorities to reflect. As cool as Times Square or Statue of Liberty may be, as the saying goes, “been there, done that!” So this long weekend was spent visiting the coolest neighbourhoods, incredible restaurants, and bar hopping through Brooklyn. What more could I ask for?
Ok, so restaurants in NYC get bonus points for cute taglines. This one is “good karma served daily” and they’ve got a 100% gluten-free so I’d say so. I didn’t get a chance to visit the actual restaurant, but they served a couple dishes at the WELL Summit so I had a chance to try. It was really delicious; the chicken + rice and the cauli’fornia were bomb!
Alright, this was my (documented) first stop of the trip. A multi-location fast casual eatery with a 95% gluten-free menu. Their approach to food is sustainable, seasonal and simple. The food they prepare is the kind of meals I like most- hearty salads, nourishing bowls and refreshing juices. There are meat and veg options, depending on your diet or mood. My choice was the Rad Thai, an asian-style salad with citrus shrimp!
I was very excited to visit this restaurant. A couple months ago they sent me an invitation to their grand opening, not knowing that I was from Toronto! Anyway, I made it a point to stop by this 100% gluten-free Italian restaurant to see what it’s all about. They initially hooked me with their adorable wall signage (see below), then came the menu. Items like spaghetti and meatballs, garlic bread and mozza sticks stood out, things I grew up loving and didn’t think I would ever experience again!
With the tagline “smart food for a good mood,” you can bet that you’re in for some healthy AF eats. These ultra modern cafes are sprinkled all over NYC (and other locations), with grab and go options. I was in a bit of a hurry and grabbed a coconut parfait with buckwheat granola to tide me over. I wish I could have stayed and hung out for a while longer, the space at the Soho location is very white and bright!
Do not miss out on this place. Another 100% gluten-free restaurant, but this one is the OG. Walking in you’ll get that classic osteria feel, however if the day is nice, opt to sit on the lush patio! Everything from pastas to pizzas to chicken (or eggplant) parms to tiramisu for dessert. I swear this place is heaven on earth. They also take additional food allergies seriously, being mindful of corn, dairy, and nuts. It was here that I met with my GF blogger girl crush, Katie of @gfreeblondie, with her sweet mama. I honestly felt like we had been friends for a long time, it was so refreshing to meet IRL. We also had the pleasure of meeting owner, Teona, who is so darn sweet it made my heart swell. Her passion and love for her restaurant was palpable. If I were you, get the parm, a pizza and save room for tiramisu!
Looking for something a little frou frou? Make sure you stop in for lunch or dinner at Mario Batali’s Michelin-starred Italian restaurant. They make house-made breads and pastas, and are next-level accommodating. It is so beyond delicious and a truly exceptional experience. Located near the Chelsea Market and High Line, it’s a great spot to take a break after touring around.
This is hands down the best gluten-free pizza I have ever had. I was not expecting much when my friend brought me here. But hot damn, it was beyond. The crust is chewy, the texture is crispy and the toppings are fresh! It’s a busy spot, so prepare to wait but you will not be disappointed. They also have a gluten-free arancini… just saying, make room!
You can leave it to me to stumble upon the gluten-free gems wherever I go. This is exactly how I found Caracas. While meeting up with a couple friends for drinks in Williamsburg, I realized how hungry I was. Right next door to the speakeasy was this place with LOTS of gluten-free options, of course. With arepas and traditional plates, you will not go hungry here. I went for a classic plate, with plantains, chicken, rice and beans!
This place is sneaky gluten-free. I walked in not knowing that it was a dedicated restaurant and I was so pleasantly surprised. I went for a power brunch with a girlfriend and we were both very excited that everything was GF, hello french toast! I wish I could have eaten every meal here, it was so tasty! A boozy brunch is definitely recommended at this Park Ave beauty.
When bone broth is the highlight of the menu, you better bet I’m going to make a trip. I’ve been obsessing over broth this year, ever since going through some additional stomach problems and needed an extra boost. Springbone, yet again, found me. As I was getting lost in the streets of New York, I stumbled upon it and having heard about this place, knew I needed to check it out. Another pleasant surprise, as everything on the menu is gluten-free. While I only sampled the broth, they offer salads, bowls and sandwiches also.
While this isn’t the most GF-friendly restaurant, the views of the city and the drinks are worth it. We stopped in for an afternoon bite (I ate a very good burger, without the bun), and some drinks! The 360 rooftop bar gives you some of the best views the city has to offer. I highly recommend waiting to get up!