Melbourne’s Most Allergy-Friendly Restaurants
Unfortunately, not all of us were born with an iron stomach that can withstand the likes of gluten, onion, garlic, dairy or shellfish. For those of us that fall into the ‘food allergy’ bubble, our daily lives are consumed by constant nagging questions of “Is there *insert devil food here* in that?” We can look annoying to wait staff and our fellow diners, but honestly we did not chose this life – it chose us.
To help navigate the Melbourne dining scene for those pesky food intolerants, here is our list of Melbourne’s most allergy-friendly restaurants and cafes.
From the creators of the much loved Vegie Bar on Brunswick Street, Transformer takes a step up from their casual vegetarian friendly cafe into full-blown fine dining. The menu at Transformer is vegan, gluten free and fructose friendly and they are happy to cater to any other allergies with notice. The food at Transformer isn’t just for those following a meat free or allergy dictated diet though – the food is seriously good (and insanely pretty) and will make you even the most hardened carnivore look at vegetables in a completely new light.
Mamasita is not only one of the hottest Mexican restaurants in town it is also one of the most accommodating to those that suffer from any kind of food intolerance. The entire menu is either gluten free or can be made gluten free (except for a few desserts). There is also a menu card available on request indicating the main allergens present in every dish, such as onion, garlic, egg, chili and dairy. On top of this, the staff are super friendly and willing to cater to dietary requirements – so ensure you share your food restrictions with them.
Many of George Calombaris’ venues are incredibly allergy-friendly, however the most renowned for catering to the food-challenged is ‘Gazi’. Delivering authentic Greek food with a modern twist, Gazi is the place to go for high-end souvas, wood-fired spit roasted meats and luscious Greek donuts. We recommend that you call ahead and give the friendly staff a heads up about what’s on your ‘no-go’ food list; this will ensure the food is catered specifically to you and you will be pre-warned of any danger dishes before ordering.
Monk Bodhi Dharma / Admiral Cheng Ho
A brunch café where bacon and eggs aren’t even an option can seem a little intimidating. Luckily these two sister cafes have your back. Whether you dine at the original Balaclava outpost or try their café in Abbotsford, you will leave feeling like you haven’t missed out on anything. Both cafes are all about serving a menu that is safe for vegetarians and vegans but also caters to those who avoid gluten, onion, garlic, sugar and soy. The menu is choc full of deliciously nutritious creations like smashed avo, mushrooms on polenta bread and buckwheat apple pancakes. Allergy who?
Fox in the Box
This relatively new addition to the foodie scene is completely 100% dedicated to delivering allergy friendly food to the people of Melbourne. All food on the menu is gluten free, fructose friendly and lactose and dairy free. They can also cater to any other allergies that you can throw at them. The menu means that you can indulge in things that are usually a complete no-no like a chicken parma, lasagna or a meat pie. There are take home meals so you can stock your freezer up with go-to meals for during the week. Winning!
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