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June 5, 2013

Gluten Free at The Grand Hyatt Kauai

Summer is just around the corner which means it is the perfect time to plan a vacation with your loved one or entire family. But for those with Celiac disease planning a vacation can be a stressful task, so I wanted to share Mark and I's Hawaiian vacation last year and spotlight The Grand Hyatt Kauai as a gluten free accommodating resort. The resort exceeded every expectation in regards to their understanding of the gluten free diet, their entree selection and let’s not forget to mention the amazing resort and pool.

As confident as I feel at times with my diet and knowing what I can and cannot have, I still get nervous and anxious when traveling and venturing out of my comfort food bubble (aka my kitchen and tried and true restaurants in San Diego). Weeks prior to any of our vacation departure dates, you can find me determining what amenities our hotel room includes, whether there is a mini fridge, toaster, or microwave in the room and then I plan accordingly what snacks and food items I can take. Check out Gluten Free on The Go- for my go to snack items which also come in handy when traveling. 

When Mark and I were planning our trip to Kauai, not to sound like a "Debbie Downer" but as excited as our trip was going to be I couldn't help but stress about my food "situation". I was stressing until I came across "Grand Hyatt Kauai's Gluten Free Booklet & Dining Guide" my anxiety and fear went away instantly with one click. This is a "Celiac's dream come true" word document. Check it out! You might do a double take, I sure did!

The booklet lists each item that is gluten free and/or can be prepared gluten free at each restaurant at the Grand Hyatt. Whether we were craving Italian, Japanese, a quick bite, ordering room service or just picking up a snack at the local hotel shop, their gluten free symbol (gf) was EVERYWHERE! Below is a summary of our stay at the Grand Hyatt in Kauai with details of the incredible gluten free dining we experienced at each restaurant.

Donderos- a fancy Italian restaurant with patio seating and an ocean view. Our waiter went above and beyond in making sure my meal was prepared gluten free and that our dining experience went seamlessly. And did I mention I had my own bread basket at the start of the meal? Just saying...

Our Selections:
Appetizer- Eggplant Involtini- Grilled Herb Marinated Eggplan, Burrata Cheese, Tomato Coulis, Parmesan Crisp

Entree- Capelli D-Angelo con Pomodoro- Capellini Pasta, Vine Ripened Tomatoes, Garlic, Basil, White Wine, Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Tidepools- our last night's meal! Hands down our favorite, I guess you could say we saved the best for last :) The setting was magical, we were seated at a corner table, with all 3 sides surrounded by a Koi pond. There was a large rock waterfall in the background and could not have been more romantic.
Entree- Mahi Mahi

Ilima Terrace- gluten free pancakes with fresh fruit! Need I say more?

Stevenson's Library- Our first night's meal, a cozy, dim lit bar with an extensive sushi and drink menu.
Entree- Edamame, Spicy Tuna Roll, Rainbow Roll and sake of course :)

Room Service- On the day we went on an 8 mile hike to a beautiful waterfall, we opted to stay in and order room service. I couldn't justify walking one more step, so we simply opened the Room Service menu and picked out a few entrees that would be perfect for a night in on the patio.
Entree- Pappardelle Primavera (requested gluten free pasta)

Hotel Gift Shop- We picked up this bag of Crunch Master Multi-seed Rosemary & Olive oil crackers to enjoy on our balcony with cheese and wine. 

Each night Mark and I declared that that night's meal was the BEST! But each night we ventured to another restaurant at the resort, and the Hyatt continued to delivered exceptional service and another gluten free mouth watering meal. I want to thank the entire staff at the Grand Hyatt in Kauai, for making my stay one that I will never forget and always brag about. Your gluten free hospitality and service exceeded every expectation, we cannot wait to visit your piece of paradise again soon.