|A sample Riverside breakfast: Choice of quiches (both made with gluten-free crusts), one with summer squash from the Inn's garden and sundried tomatoes, served with chicken sausage; OR the second, made with mushrooms and Inn-grown sweet peppers, served with bacon; both accompanied by baked rosemary/garlic fingerling potatoes, choice of gluten-free Inn-baked toast or gluten-free Inn-baked English muffins, and fresh seasonal fruit|
Riverside Inn is Gluten-Free and Celiac-Safe
Most guests are surprised to discover that Riverside is a Gluten-Free Bed and Breakfast Inn. The food is so good that guests are usually unaware that the wonderful tastes and textures of their Inn breakfasts have been carefully created from selected ingredients which are wheat- and gluten-free. Those who must follow a gluten-free diet are delighted. When the Inn went totally gluten-free in July 2012, it was the first and only bed and breakfast inn in New England to be offering this environment to its guests. Of course, there are many foods which are naturally gluten-free, like fresh fruits, vegetables, dairy products, meats, poultry, nuts, and more, which are deliciously featured in Riverside breakfast selections.
Why is the Riverside Inn gluten-free? Innkeeper Ken Lydecker explains:
"When our daughter Catherine, who plans a career as an osteopath, said a gluten-free diet could drastically improve the health and well-being of our whole family - as it had for her - I was skeptical. But after reading up on the subject and eliminating foods containing gluten from my own meals, I experienced positive results very quickly. The more I educated myself on the topic, the more I was convinced that the wheat- and gluten-free lifestyle can benefit everyone. I vowed to convert to a gluten-free lifestyle myself."
"Once I made my own personal diet changes, I began to feel uneasy about preparing and serving breakfasts to our guests which were made with conventional flours and other wheat ingredients. We've built our menus around healthy, nutritious, quality ingredients, while - most importantly - never sacrificing taste. I became passionate about converting the Inn to gluten-free, making sure I could do it so invisibly that guests who have no special dietary needs would be unaffected by the changes. I didn't want anyone to learn Riverside Inn is gluten-free and think it would make it undesirable to stay and eat here. Breakfast is such an important part of the Bed & Breakfast experience, and we certainly didn't want to jeopardize our reputation for extraordinary morning meals. I learned that gluten-free certainly doesn't mean something is going to taste bad. It became a personal challenge to find substitutions which behave like wheat in foods like pancakes, French toast, coffee cakes, and other selections, so we could continue to serve our guests their favorite breakfasts."
"It took a lot of self-education, experimentation, restocking, label-reading, and re-outfitting the Inn's kitchen to convert to being a gluten-free Inn. You can find a few restaurants and lodging properties which offer some gluten-free menu choices, along with their regular menu selections, but my goal was for Riverside Inn to be entirely gluten-free. While testing new recipes, the dog ate some of my rejects, but, simultaneously, Inn guests were asking for recipes from my successes - and were surprised to learn the foods they liked so much were gluten-free. Now, in an effort to provide a complete and enjoyable Bed & Breakfast experience to the growing number of people who are either eliminating glutens for improved health, sensitive to gluten, or suffering from the more dangerous autoimmune dysfunction called Celiac disease, Riverside Inn is proud to proclaim that all foods served here - from the breakfast breads to the afternoon cookies to the candies in the guest rooms - are wheat-free, gluten-free, and celiac-safe, with no cross contamination risks in our kitchen preparation. The one-in-a-hundred undiagnosed people who have gluten intolerance might even discover they feel better during their stay at Riverside Inn! And we are happy to add that we have successfully converted to gluten-free transparently, and our guests continue to be delighted with the breakfasts at Riverside Inn." - Ken Lydecker, Innkeeper/Owner
To be gluten-free friendly, Riverside Inn not only eliminated wheat, rye, and barley flours and other gluten ingredients from its kitchen staples, but also eliminated ingredients where gluten is often hiding, such as flavorings, seasonings, condiments, and sides. Chef Ken also succeeded in converting the Inn-made breakfast selections and afternoon cookies to gluten-free, without resorting to prepackaged "gluten free" products that sometimes are lacking in nutrition compared with their wheat counterparts. Most Inn creations are made-from-scratch, always with special focus on flavor. Even the candies in the guest rooms were replaced which choices known to be free of gluten ingredients.
Decontaminating the Inn Kitchen
More about being Gluten Free
PLEASE NOTE: It is ultimately up to the Guest to use his or her individual discretion to make an informed choice regarding whether to eat any particular foods. Riverside Inn cannot guarantee that allergens may not have been introduced during another stage of the food chain process or, even with all precautions taken, during preparation at the Inn. The Inn commits to do its best to ensure gluten-free dining, and invites guests to request information about ingredients and inspect any labels of products used in food preparation before having them served.
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