Tag Archives: food allergies

Juliette Kitchen and Bar and Food Allergies

I’m always on the hunt for new places to pop in for a quick drink and small plates.  Orange County has tons of delicious little restaurants and bars, but you just have to know where to look for them.  Juliette Kitchen and Bar is one of these gems that is located in a small strip mall off Bristol street.

The Englishman and I literally stumbled upon Juliette Kitchen and Bar one evening and decided to get a glass of wine and maybe a few appetizers to share.  The inside was cute and cozy, and the place was packed.  I liked the vibe immediately when I walked in.

We sat down at a table and ordered a glass of prosecco and rose.  There was a slight mix up with our drinks and we ended up with a glass of prosecco and a glass of pinot grigio instead.

juliettekitchenandbar_proseccoThe waitress was quick to notice the error and immediately went and got the glass of rose, and let us have the pinot grigio on the house which was incredibly nice.  I decided to order a couple of small bites to enjoy while we sipped our drinks.

First up was the Grilled Pear Salad with burrata cheese, hazelnuts, arugula and red wine.

juliettekitchenandbar_saladI happen to love burrata cheese, so I knew this would be delicious and it was.  I loved the creaminess of the cheese mixed with the salty hazelnuts and the sweet pear.  It was absolutely delicious.

We also ordered some French Fries that came with harissa aioli and house made ketchup.

juliettekitchenandbar_friesAfter having a couple of fries, the Englishman reminded me that I committed a big no-no when it comes to my food allergies:  I didn’t ask what oil the fries were cooked in.

We flagged the waitress down and sure enough the fries were cooked in soybean oil.  My heart sank since soy is one of the things I am allergic to.  We explained the situation to her and she was nice enough to take the fries off our bill all together.

Since I had only had a couple of bites I didn’t have an allergic reaction, but it was just another reminder how important it is to ask how food is prepared.  99.9% of the time I always ask if a dish has corn, soy or walnuts in it and this was one of those rare circumstances where I didn’t ask.  Since my allergies are not life-threatening, I have a slip up every now and then, but this was a strong reminder that I need to make sure I do my due diligence.  The last time I encountered fries cooked in soybean oil was at Eat Chow a few months ago (but I asked beforehand in that situation).

That being said, I definitely want to go back to Juliette Kitchen and Bar and have one of their entrees (after checking the ingredients of course).  Everything looked and smelled so good in there, and the staff was so friendly and nice.  We will definitely be back.

Lesson of the day – always ask what’s in your food regardless of if you think it is a “safe” place or not.


Back to Basics at True Food Kitchen

I’ve had my eye on True Food Kitchen since it opened last year, and with a beautiful spring day on the horizon and nothing else on the agenda, I knew it was time for True Food Kitchen and I to formally meet.

True Food Kitchen is an all-green, organic restaurant that uses simple, fresh ingredients in all of their dishes.  Most items on the menu have anywhere from 3-7 ingredients TOTAL and complement each other quite nicely.  The menu is inspired by Dr. Andrew Weil’s Anti-Inflammatory Food Pyramid (which you can see here), and proves once and for all that eating healthy does not mean sacrificing flavor.

One of the things I loved most about True Food Kitchen was the bright and airy space.  There’s an outdoor patio that is partially covered/uncovered, a large bar area, a private dining room, and plenty of seating within the restaurant.  Since it was a beautiful day out, I opted to sit on the patio.

True Food Kitchen Patio - LOVED the green chairs

Now let’s talk about the good stuff.  The Food.  As a food allergy sufferer, these types of restaurants with simple basic ingredients are my mecca.  I know exactly what I’m ingesting and don’t have to worry about any allergy after-effects.  I started my meal off with a drink called “The Natural,”  made with agave, ginger, and soda water.

The Natural aka my newest obsession

I normally don’t rave much about drinks (well not nonalcoholic ones anyway), but this drink was superb.  Light, fizzy, refreshing, with that added ginger zing.  It’s the perfect drink on a warm day and I couldn’t get enough.  I even tried to re-create the drink later that weekend at home but it was more of a Ginger Drink FAIL than anything.  I think I need to work on my ginger to soda water ratio…

I wasn’t starving when I arrived at True Food Kitchen, so I kept it simple with the hummus and fresh pita and the turkey burger.  The hummus had some herbs in it which gave it nice flavor, and the pita was warm and delicious (and whole wheat!)

Who doesn't love delicious pita and hummus?

The turkey burger came with provolone cheese, avocado, tomato and a site of sweet potato hash and kale salad.  While the burger was perfectly cooked it seemed to be missing something.  Maybe some herbs or a little spice?  I was still drooling over the hummus when the burger arrived so perhaps I was already slightly biased.  I do think I’d like to try a few other things on the menu before venturing back to the turkey burger, but it is a good choice for someone who doesn’t want a lot of spice with their food.

The turkey burger is blocking the amazingness that is the kale salad

The Kale salad however was pretty epic, and the simplest ingredients ever!  Just kale, lemon, breadcrumbs.  I don’t know what they did to this salad but I gobbled it down.  The sweet potato hash was also pretty decent, but then again I’ll eat anything  involving sweet potatoes.

Overall I was very impressed with True Food Kitchen.  I’m definitely planning on coming back and trying more of the menu (and of course getting another “Natural” drink).  It’s the perfect spot for when you are looking for something that is delicious and nutritious, and equally satisfying.  Oh and it’s just minutes away from the beach – can’t beat that.

True Food Kitchen

451 Newport Center Dr.
Newport Beach, CA 92660
P: 949.644.2400