THE GLUTEN-FREE RESTAURANT THAT’S NO LONGER SAFE FOR COELIACS
You may remember I blogged about an entirely gluten-free restaurant last year.*
I was thrilled to find it, and even more excited to discover it was a national chain with 19 restaurants in the UK.
I also wrote about it for Free-From Heaven magazine where it got a full-page spread as the ‘hottest place in town’.
So I was absolutely gutted to go there two days ago to discover half their menu’s no longer guaranteed to be gluten-free.
The place? Pho (pronounced ‘fuh’).
I’d been looking forward to enjoying their spring rolls again. Let’s face it, it’s not often as a Coeliac you get to have a crispy spring roll, let alone an enormous menu boasting everything from noodles to pancakes.
But spring rolls I couldn’t have, along with half of the other choices I wanted from the menu. They made this disclaimer:
Dear Pho customer,
We have just been made aware of some changes in the supply chain to a few of our ingredients and we must act with due diligence this matter. We have therefore decided to suspend our accreditation by Coeliac UK and cannot make the gluten-free claim on our entire menu until we have thoroughly investigated these changes.
We are in the process of producing a new menu with the official Coeliac UK line removed, and we continue to run our kitchens as we always have.
We are currently testing a range of our ingredients, and from Lab tests that we have received back to date, we are confident in the gluten-free status of the following items:
Pho noodle soups Bun dishes – without a spring roll Fried rice Pho Xao dishes Xao dishes Summer rolls Salads Morning glory Green beans
Pho was accredited by Coeliac UK as a gluten free venue in 2015 after undergoing their training and auditing process because the ingredients and products we use in our kitchens are made from naturally non-gluten containing ingredients. We are continuing to work closely with Coeliac UK on this, and we will update this statement as we progress.
Thank you for your patience and understanding.
All at Pho
The good news
Firstly, I must applaud Pho for their strict guidelines on gluten-free. They’re much more clued up about it than many other restaurants.
Secondly, they are still serving dishes they can guarantee are gluten-free and there are plenty of them.
Thirdly, they’ve made it clear it’s their suppliers who have changed their ingredients and not Pho themselves. Therefore, there’s a gluten-free crumb of hope that they’ll either change suppliers or alter the ingredients so they can continue their gluten-free status.
…I won’t be eating their spring rolls, but I can enjoy their amazing juices, noodle soups and sorbets. And that’s not too shabby.
What do you think about the changes at Pho? Do share your thoughts below!
* apart from one product they didn’t make on the premises & had shipped into the place in sealed packets.