Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Praising Francesca and Chipotle

As you might imagine we rarely eat out as a family.  Far too many restaurant meals have ended in a table full of vomit to fully enjoy the experience.  Lately, however, the urge for some normalcy and let's be honest, a break from the kitchen, has been looming.  Gladly, Roo's on an upswing at the moment and seems to be tolerating food unusually well.  Time to capitalize on our good fortune, because who knows where we'll be after the next scope. 

Saturday night on a whim we headed to one of our favorite and historically most child-friendly and allergy-accommodating restaurants,  Francesca's Al Fiore, in Forest Park.  Now despite the awesome pizza, this is no pizza joint.  With white tablecloths, real napkins, great food, and a fully stocked wine cellar, it was almost like date night, plus three.  As usual the staff was exceedingly patient and understanding about our plethora of questions regarding the ingredients and the waitress event went so far as to declare that we have most charming children.  They were remarkably well behaved and quiet, almost like we do this all the time.  Ranked among our top 3 meals out as a family.  Ever.  Hands down.   

So today while Looly was on a field trip leaving the little ones and me to run errands, I was struck with a sudden surge of bravery.  Lunch out.  Just the three of us.  While I realize that grabbing a quick lunch with the kiddos is commonplace for many families, we are not one of them.  On top of the constant threat of anaphylaxis, have I mentioned that Roo vomits in restaurants?  Take it from the lady who travels with an empty tupperware container and a dish towel in my purse, just in case.

Bring on Chipotle.  Did you know that Chipotle is a completely peanut and tree nut-free establishment?  I didn't until all too recently.  No egg either.  Their allergy information is super accessible and again, the staff was well-informed and incredibly accommodating.  No grimaces or sighs as I asked my slew of questions.  The lady even asked me if I'd like her to change gloves because I had asked about dairy cross-contamination.  Fortunately, with Roo's dairy trial underway, he had plenty to choose from.  Chips, guacamole, cheese quesadilla, rice, black beans, and more shredded cheese on top.  Technically he could eat the chicken and carnitas too, but they were a little spicy for both kids.  Now if that meal can't put some weight on him, I don't know what will.  Of course, if we lose soy next week after the scope, we're totally screwed.  But today is a good day.  

This oughta sum it up...

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