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

Pieminister Gluten Free Pies

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Having lived in Bristol for over 10 years now, one of the best things it has produced is definitely its Pieminister pies! I always loved having a Heidi pie (goats cheese, spinach and sweet potato) but after being diagnosed as a coeliac four years ago, these became a thing of the past.

That was until Pieminister recently introduced their gluten free pies! Only three of their pies are gluten free at present, but one of them just so happens to be the Heidi pie! Wahoo! 🙂

Pieminister kindly offered me the chance to try their gluten free pies – there was no way I could say no to that!

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

We’ve spent the best part of a year rolling, mixing, tasting and baking to create Gluten Free Moo and Heidi pies.  And proof that they taste just as great as their non-GF counterparts, they both triumphed in the 2016 British Pie Awards. Taking first place in the Free From Class, the Gluten Free Heidi was crowned Class Champion, making it officially the best gluten free pie in the UK. The Gluten Free Moo was placed in the top three ‘Free From’ pies in Britain, winning a Gold Medal and the ‘Highly Commended’ title. Continue reading

LumberJack Bars

lumberjack-logoThe early days of being a new mum proved quite hard for me, but one thing that really got me through was a well-timed delivery of LumberJack Bars!

I spent the first week home from hospital effectively stuck in one room as I had a few mobility issues, so Rich was making sure that I was well fed so that I could look after the baby, but mealtimes were a bit hit and miss.

As a result, snacks proved to be very useful for providing that extra bit of fuel, especially protein packed ones…. Continue reading

Georges Fish Bar, Hanham

Social media really is a wonderful thing…. You’ll be aware that I set up the Coeliacs in Bristol Facebook group with the intention of forming an official Coeliac UK group (more on that to follow….), but it’s also used as a forum for sharing new finds and asking for advice.

One of the suggestions posted by the lovely Sonia was regarding Georges Fish Bar in Hanham and that they are now serving gluten free fish and chips. Having moved to Hanham earlier this year, this was amazing news, so I contacted them for some more information.

At present they only offer gluten free fish and chips on the first Monday of every month between the hours of 17:00 – 20:30, but hopefully with a bit more advertising and interest I’m hoping they may increase this…. Continue reading

Pizza Express – gluten free dough balls

headerlogoSince I last wrote a review about Pizza Express back in 2013, I’ve visited the restaurants on numerous occasions, whether it be on my lunch break, with the Bristol Coeliac Group or when I booked to have a meal at one of the restaurants in Bath for my hen night!

Back when I wrote the first review, the starter options were quite limited, but now everyone’s prayers have been answered – they have gluten free dough balls! 🙂

Continue reading

Renaissance Cafe Bar Restaurant, Penzance

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Back in April we went back to my home town of Penzance to celebrate my birthday and to see my friends before we had the baby (we knew we wouldn’t be back home for a long time once we’d had him).

I wanted to get everyone together in one place which meant that I needed to find a suitable venue to accommodate a large group, as well as one that could cater for my dietary requirements.

Situated in Wharfside Shopping Centre overlooking Penzance harbour, I’d been to the Renaissance Restaurant on numerous occasions both before being diagnosed and since then, so I knew that they could safely cater for a coeliac, making it the perfect choice. Continue reading

La Grotta, Bristol – gluten free pizzas!

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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

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