Not A Trace Awards 2016

Regular readers will know that each year I have my own little awards ‘ceremony’ where I acknowledge the best products / companies in various categories.

The awards for 2016 are obviously a little late(!) and as my blog posts were few and far between last year, due to a certain little person taking all my attention, the 2016 awards are more a summary of my blog reviews from last year.

Despite my inability to blog of late, it’s great to have had over 58,000 blog views since Not A Trace began. I am also very proud to see the constant stream of views every day even if I haven’t blogged for a while. Thank you to you all!

So, on to the awards / 2016 round-up…. Continue reading

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Bristol Coeliac UK Local Support Group

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you’ll be aware that I have spent a number of years trying to reinstate the Bristol Coeliac UK Local Support Group (the original post from 2014 can be found here).

I didn’t think it was right that a city the size of Bristol didn’t have its own group and that its members had to travel further afield to go to events. Well, things have changed…..

We now have our own group!! 🙂

After a lot of years of effort from a group of very committed people (who are now committee members), the official group had its launch back in July 2016. I was due to have been at the event, but was instead in hospital being unexpectedly induced, so sort of had my hands full!

The event was a resounding success and was just a taster of things to come for the group.

At the start of this month we held our first coffee morning at Windmill Hill City Farm, which was well attended and helped to raise funds for future events. The donations we receive from members are extremely important as we are a self funding group, so if we don’t receive the donations then unfortunately we won’t be able to put on the events.

You’ll be pleased to know that there are more coffee mornings in the pipeline, as well as some free from taster evenings and even our very own food fair!

In order to find out more about our upcoming events, pop over to our official group Facebook page, as well as the Coeliacs in Bristol Facebook group which also shares details of our events.

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:

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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

Bristol Coeliac Group – Meet No. 7

Due to the Summer holidays and a bit of wedding planning on my part, the Bristol Coeliac Group took a bit of a break before gathering again for its September meet up.

We’re realising that there are still a lot of gluten free friendly restaurants in Bristol that we need to work our way through but this time we opted for The Cowshed Bristol which can be found on Whiteladies Road.

I’d been there once and that was for my work Christmas meal last year, so I knew that their food was great, but most of the rest of the group hadn’t eaten there before so I looked forward to their reactions!

If you’ve not come across The Cowshed before, here’s a bit more about them:

Our ethos is simple; to serve good, British food with an emphasis on quality, locally sourced produce, in a relaxed and comfortable environment.

The Cowshed was opened in 2009 by Adam Denton, who sought to create a restaurant in his hometown of Bristol that offered to combine an informal setting with an emphasis on quality, local produce. Continue reading

The Wheat Free Kitchen – our wedding cake!

Hi everyone, I’m back!!

Sorry for the blog / social media silence for the past few months / year but I’ve been fully engrossed in changing jobs and getting married, but as Rich and I are now Mr and Mrs I thought it was time to get back to the blogging, and what better way to start than with a review of our wedding cake! 🙂

From the start of the wedding planning process, we both agreed that all food at the wedding would be gluten free to avoid the risk of any potential cross contamination issues and to make sure that I wasn’t ill on our big day.

There are quite a few places in Bristol that make gluten free cakes and I got some quotes from these places, as well as asking around for suggestions at work. We also went to a wedding fayre at our wedding venue, and although the sample cakes there were amazing, there was little reassurance from anywhere I’d contacted that they could safely cope with making a gluten free cake.

Cue my lovely friends Gem and Beth at The Wheat Free Kitchen…

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Bristol Coeliac Group – Meet No. 6

la grottaThe May outing for members of the ‘Coeliacs in Bristol’ Facebook group was to Italian restaurant La Grotta which can be found on Union Street in the city centre.

I regularly used to spend my lunch breaks eating at La Grotta when I used to work just around the corner, but this was in my pre coeliac days. So how would it compare now?

I’d been advised that they had gluten free options, so I emailed them to find out more and they supplied me with an entire gluten free menu, which was 4 pages long!! What a great start, but how would I know that they could be trusted with cross contamination etc?

Well, it turns out that one of the team is gluten intolerant. Not quite the same as being a coeliac, but she understands the pain of eating out when you’re sensitive to something and having to ask lots of questions about your food!

Here is the opening text from their Gluten Free Menu:

We are pleased to be able to offer the following options from our menu as Gluten Free. Here at La Grotta we understand all about food Intolerances and Allergies and the havoc they can cause to digestion and general wellbeing. We try to source the best tasting Gluten Free products for you to enjoy and feel passionately that Gluten Free customers should enjoy eating out as much as everyone else.
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