Courtesy of The Roosevelt
The Roosevelt coats its fried chicken with rice flour and cornmeal for gluten-free fried heaven
The fryer. It’s a magical place that makes unparalleled deliciousness happen, but it’s also usually a sea of infinitesimal gluten-y crumbs. One of my worst post-Celiac-diagnosis days began when I learned that while French fries are gluten-free before going into the fryer, they almost never come back out that way in almost any restaurant. (I went through all the stages of grief, with an extra helping of denial, while still staring at my wise friend who imparted this knowledge to me.) It takes a dedicated gluten-free fryer to ensure that fried treats will come out safe and sound, and luckily for us, several Richmond favorites have incorporated one into their repertoire. Here’s my best-of list:
- Fried chicken at The Roosevelt: Tuesday night is a special night in my life because of the wondrous, salty, crispy, honey-and-hot-sauce-spiked phenomenon that is The Roosevelt’s fried chicken. I almost decided to keep it a secret since it’s only served one night a week, but guilt doesn’t make a great dipping sauce.
- Fried oysters at Hutch Bar & Eatery: Bite-size and tender with a subtle brininess, these suckers might become your next addiction. They don’t coat your mouth in grease — the cornmeal batter picks up just enough oil to transform into a crunchy shell — but they do leave a residue of sadness on your face when they’re gone.
- French fries at Burger Bach: Ah, the glory of following up a giant bite of juicy burger with a perfectly golden fry. A number of spots around town have gluten-free buns for burgers (thank you, thank you, thank you), but there aren’t many that also use a dedicated fryer for fries. Bonus: these babies are hand-cut, so some are still adorned with crackly bits of potato skin.
- Tortilla chips and tostadas at Tio Pablo Taqueria: Along with every other food item on the entire menu, Tio Pablo’s fried chips and tostadas are served up worry-free — no wheat-y empanadas, fried flour tortillas or battered items in sight. It’s a gluten-free restaurant! Killer fresh salsa with lots of jalapenos accompanies your complimentary chip basket.
- Fried calamari at The Daily Kitchen & Bar: Seafoodies can finally get their fried squid on again! A squeeze of lemon is all these crispy, chewy lovelies really need, but the extras are irresistible: peppadews, chipotle lemon vinaigrette and garlic toum (Egyptian-style aioli). A plate of calamari paired with the fried Brussels sprouts side makes an awesome, hard-to-find GF meal.
Did we miss any of your favorites? Let us know in the comments section.