La Grotta, Bristol – gluten free pizzas!

la grotta

If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you will be aware of my slight addiction to La Grotta, an Italian restaurant in Bristol city centre.

We went there for one of our Bristol Coeliac group meals last year, but I’ve been numerous times since then for lunch and also insisted that it’s where we went for my birthday work lunch last month. Basically I love it there!

When we went for the group meal (the full review can be found here if you’re interested!), La Grotta were in the process of producing gluten free pizzas, but they weren’t yet available, so we indulged in their amazing pasta dishes instead.

But things have changed, they now have their gluten free pizzas and they are incredible!🙂 Continue reading

LoveCakeLisa – homemade gluten and dairy free cakes in West Cornwall

As you know, I like to publicise gluten free products and events both in Bristol and West Cornwall and this review is all about one such brand back at home in Penzance.

If you’re looking for gluten and dairy free cakes in West Cornwall then look no further than LoveCakeLisa.

Lisa kindly dropped some cakes round just before I went home for my birthday and on my arrival I was greeted by a selection of 4 individual cupcakes – chocolate, orange, zesty lemon and strawberry creme.

Before I get on to the review, here’s a little bit more about Lisa, taken from her blog:

My name is Lisa Spooner.  Originally from the west Midlands, I relocated to west Cornwall in 1998, and I’ve been living gluten-&-dairy-free for many years – long before it became trendy, and long before the supermarkets began to cotton on to the whole ‘free from’ market.  I can happily go without bread and pasta, but the one thing I did miss was good cake.  Yes, I know that in recent years the shops have begun to fill up with such products, but all too often these are loaded with cheap sugars, bad fats and unnecessary chemical additives which I’d prefer not to be eating.  So the only option for me was to make my own, not only to enjoy myself but to also share with family and friends – including those who eat ‘normal’ food! Continue reading

The Pastry Room

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Unfortunately this is another long overdue review due to numerous time constraints, but I wanted to let you know about my experience of a product from a company called The Pastry Room.

The Pastry Room produce their own frozen gluten free pastry, but not the kind that you can buy in the supermarkets. They cater for both professionals and homebakers through the production of their frozen pastry mixes, which allow you to use as much or as little as you like.

I was very kindly sent two of their mixes to sample (their gluten free pie pastry and their gluten free scone mix).

Before I get on to the review, here’s a little bit more about the brand, taken from their website:

Colin is a Pastry Chef, and has been for 30 years, dedicated to crafting the finest bakery products using the best ingredients he can source.

A few years ago he devised a unique (now patented) method of making a superfine, frozen mix that allowed him to prepare pastry to his exacting standards every time, with ease and no waste. He joined forces with John and they founded The Pastry Room, selling delicious pastry and scones that are now enjoyed by thousands. Continue reading

It’s Not A Trace’s birthday!

I’ve just been reminded that it’s my blog’s birthday today! Happy Birthday Not A Trace!🙂

My blog was set up 3 years ago for two main reasons: the first was to allow me to have an outlet to share my gluten free views and reviews and the second was to hopefully help other coeliacs and gluten intolerant people along the way.

During the last three years the blog has had over 48,500 views, which I don’t think is bad for little old me! Continue reading

O’Joy Bistro, Shrewsbury

logoAs Rich is from Shropshire we regularly visit the other half of the family in Newport (not the Welsh one!), but we haven’t been able to visit Shrewsbury for probably well over a year, purely due to time constraints when visiting the family.

Last week on Twitter I came across O’Joy Wellness on Twitter (formally known as Optimum Joy for the locals reading this) that has recently had a relaunch. As well as offering complementary and alternative therapies in the space upstairs, downstairs (and just off the very popular Wyle Cop) is the O’Joy Bistro offering an entire vegan menu.

Although I’m not a vegan, I often find that where there are vegan options on a menu there are usually gluten free ones, too so I thought I’d tweet them to ask the question. To my delight co-owner Nick Knowles confirmed that there are gluten free options! I then spoke to fellow owner Becky who was able to provide me with the current menu (see below). Continue reading

Venue 35, Westbury-on-Trym

I need to make a massive apology to Josh and the team at Venue 35, Westbury-on-Trym, for the massive delay in posting this blog review from the Bristol Coeliac Group’s Christmas meal at the venue. Due to personal reasons things have been a little busy of late and blogging has had to take a back seat, but I think this review was worth the wait…

Towards the end of last year we floated around some venue suggestions for the group’s Christmas meal. Having been to The Townhouse the previous year, we wanted to try somewhere different and I’d heard good things about Venue 35 and in particular how much of their menu is gluten free, but I wasn’t sure if its location would be suitable for those in the group that travel quite a way to come to our monthly meals.

It turns out that there was nothing to worry about as those that could attend overwhelmingly agreed that we should give it a go. I got in touch with the venue and had regularly chats with the manager Josh to make sure everything was well prepared for the meal.

Before I come to my review, here’s a little bit more information about Venue 35, taken from their website:

Come to us for the best in the area. Venue35 Café Bar is a fully licensed premises in Westbury-on-Trym, Bristol. Come by today and choose from our amazing menu. In our cafe, we offer breakfast, lunch and early dinner seven days a week.  Continue reading

Not A Trace Awards 2015

Better late than never, welcome to my summary of the products and brands that caught my eye last year.

Unfortunately my blogging has once again had to take a back seat due to various commitments and the small matter of a wedding, but I’m very grateful to all of my readers that have stayed with me!

In the first year of my awards the blog had passed 9,000 views and last year it had reached 28,000, but I’m delighted that it’s now passed 46,000 views, even with limited blogging, so thank you very much! 🙂

So, let’s kick off the awards
.. Continue reading

River Cottage Canteen Goes Gluten Free – 16th February 2016

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Earlier this week I was contacted by River Cottage Canteen (Whiteladies Road) about one of their upcoming events.

On Tuesday 16th February they are hosting a Gluten Free evening with Naomi Delvin, author of the Gluten Free River Cottage handbook.

Here’s some more information about the event:

On Tuesday 16th February, River Cottage Canteen will be going Gluten Free. Head chef Charlie James will be cooking up a delicious gluten free three course set menu and the evening event will be hosted by the fabulous Naomi Devlin, author of the new River Cottage Gluten Free book.

Naomi will be discussing flavour flours, sourdough bread, and how to make some simple gluten free swaps that everyone can enjoy. The three course set menu will showcase seasonal and locally sourced gluten free delights for anyone following a gluten free diet and even those who don’t!

Naomi Devlin talks a little more about the evening;

“There are so many delicious alternatives to gluten and we want to help inform and inspire both those who are already following a gluten free diet and those who are simply interested in finding out more about eating healthier. Guests will be able to enjoy 3 courses of River Cottage style gluten free dishes while I try to help bust some of the myths out there about healthy eating and going gluten free.” 

Tickets are ÂŁ28 which includes the set menu. The evening starts at 7.30pm.

More information on the event can be found here.

It’s great to see a restaurant hosting an event like this, so let’s get behind it!

Tesco and its gluten free offerings

I, like a number of other people on social media, have noticed a massive improvement in the amount of gluten free options available in Tesco of late, with lots of chatter on Facebook, Twitter etc about how good the products are.

I’m aware that Tesco has often had the monopoly on new products, but recently their own brand stock has improved significantly. This combined with them raising the awareness of their gluten free offerings via their publications and TV advert has been fantastic!

My mum even commented the other day that when she went to the local store in Penzance there were staff throughout the store offering samples of some of their gluten free goodness – it’s great to see this type of instore promotion!🙂

The last time I visited one of the larger stores in the area, I actually took some photos as I was so impressed with the vast array of options:

Continue reading

Bath & West Wilts Gluten Free Food Fair – 21st November 2015

I’m sure any local readers will have seen details about this event both on my Facebook page as well as the local Facebook groups, but this is a quick reminder that this event takes place next weekend (Saturday 21st November) from 10:30am – 2:30pm at Bath Racecourse, Lansdown.

Entry to the event is ÂŁ2 (with accompanied children being free of charge) and there will be more than 35 exhibitors from the gluten free world, along with representatives from Coeliac UK and local dietitians. Continue reading