We just returned from a short summer vacay and I wanted to share a restaurant story.
I know that dining out is one of the most stressful things for people with severe food allergies because you just never know what's in the food.
We visited a wonderful lakefront restaurant on our trip, one we had been to many times before. It was a very hot day and my daughter wanted a Greek salad. (She's big into salads lately).
We communicated our daughter's allergy when we made our order and asked the waitress to check on the item. It was listed as having "Greek dressing" which in our home never contains any peanut oil or pine nuts, but we still wanted to know.
Our waitress returned and said she had spoken with the chef, which we had asked her to do. She said they didn't make the dressing, it was brought in and one of the chefs thought it might contain peanut oil or some kind of tree nut; they weren't 100%certain. They recommended we use oil and vinegar, that they would bring to our table and my daughter could put this on her salad herself.
My first thought was to be extremely thankful for this waitress. My second thought was--who would think that peanut oil is in Greek dressing?? Once again, this incident confirmed my belief that you always have to check with the chef and never assume that something is "safe" for your allergy.
I'm happy to say that the dinner was delish and we enjoyed a nice, stress-free meal after that. We thanked the waitress profusely and tipped her well--it's nice to give a good tip when they help you out. Kind of like food allergy PR as well as a thank you to the waitperson.
As you visit restaurants, never be afraid to speak up and as your child gets older, have them speak up as well. You have no way of knowing how the food is prepared unless you ask.
Here's another recent post I wrote about dining out.