Celiac Disease / Gluten Free Restaurants / Uncategorized

Super Awesome Gluten-Free Wedding

Meet the most adorable couple in the entire world. That’s Tonya, Paul, and Boddington. Boddington wasn’t allowed at the wedding, yet people like me — people with food issues — totally were. Doesn’t seem fair, does it?

So this was basically the most amazing gluten-free wedding of all time, aside from Chelsea Clinton’s. But I wasn’t invited to Chelsea’s, so screw that wedding. I was, however, invited to Paul and Tonya’s beautiful SoCal event by the ocean since Paul — one half of the nicest couple in the universe — works with my husband. Lucky me.

When I was first diagnosed with Celiac disease, I remember specifically being upset about the prospect of going to weddings. Previously, I was a big fan of the wedding, especially the surf and turf and cake. I knew my days of eating sugary white frosting were over, and I knew my tears at weddings would be over my own personal cake loss, rather than the beautiful union taking place.

This is the first wedding I’ve attended since the big C, and being the least important guest at said wedding (work guest’s wife should be pretty low on the totem pole, amiright?), I didn’t expect to even be able to say more than, “Congratulations” to the happy couple, one of whom I had never even met, and then be ushered to the back corner of a dark hall where I’d have to strain to hear the awkward toasts of friends and relatives. Yet, the first thing I saw when I walked into the reception at the beautiful La Venta Inn was this —

Maybe you’re looking at that wedding cake like and wondering if it’s gluten-free. It’s not. But did you see what was right next to it?

Macaroons. French-style fancy pants macaroons that are totally gf and so decadent I didn’t even cry over the cake. I was already so stoked about the fact that I got to eat dessert at a wedding I ordered up my first G&T of the season and sat down out of the way of family members, distinguished guests, and lifelong friends. You guys are never going to believe what happened next.

Amidst the passed hors d’oeuvres of mini cheeseburgers and ahi tuna on wonton, this guy shows up and asks if I’m gluten-free.

Do you see how they did that? Burger on lettuce wrap, ahi on lettuce wrap = super happy gluten-free wedding guest who wonders what she did in a past life to deserve this kind of treatment. Apparently I lucked out because it seemed there was another guest with the sprue, maybe two? Because that guy was totally dispatched to save us gluten-haters from appetizer envy, and I was merely his first stop.

Naturally dinner went the same way as a server came to our table and asked me if I was the one who needed a gluten-free meal. This gluten-free meal

At this point I found myself feeling sorry for anyone who had never met Paul or Tonya and were therefore, not invited to this wedding. And feeling like we totally should have spent more money on their wedding gift. If that wasn’t enough amaze-oids, one of Paul’s friends, a Mr. Mike O’Connor who was also assigned to table #9, wrote out a recipe for me for gluten-free white chocolate cookies and cream fudge. Apparently he has a niece, or a girlfriend’s nephew, or someone who is gluten-free that he makes treats for to make his/her little gluten-free tummy feel good. I wish I could remember more info, but at that point I was all high on gluten-free life and G&Ts. But you see what I’m saying about this event? Crazy nice people who make treats for small children, and are willing to write it out at a wedding for the person they just met. But Mike did not stop there. He also wrote a note on the recipe informing me that Cheetos are gluten-free. How did I not know this? Mike made sure I wouldn’t forget it. SERIOUSLY. THAT HAPPENED.

So yeah, I just went to a wedding filled with adorable, considerate to the nth degree people, where gluten-free amazingness was around every corner. I’m still in shock. God, I hope my husband never has to fire that guy for sexual misconduct and/or office supply reasons.

Have you ever been to a gluten-free friendly wedding? Honestly, I didn’t believe they existed.

25 thoughts on “Super Awesome Gluten-Free Wedding

  1. We’re scheduled to attend two weddings this year. I’m already looking forward to the gluten-y awkwardness. Sigh.
    But it’s cool that you lucked into a good one. 🙂

  2. My brother’s wedding. But then being the groom’s sister should have perks. The Groom’s cake (did not even know there was such a thing) was deliciously gluten-free and Indiana Jones themed (bonus!). I think there were only 2 dishes out of a zillion that I couldn’t eat, and they let me go through the buffet line first before anything could get glutenized. And of course my parents had the rehearsal dinner at a place with GF options. I have another single brother so I’m looking forward to a similar feast again someday…

    • ‘Indiana Jones themed gluten-free cake’ sounds like a dream I once had. I’m so glad other people have had rad experiences! But yeah, I think it’s probably not the norm.

  3. That’s amazing! I’ve been to multiple weddings since being diagnosed, with different degrees of success. One had gf pasta and salads and gf cupcakes (!) but the caterers used the same water for my gf pasta as the regular pasta and I got totally sick. A different one literally gave me the vegetarian option, which was two portabello mushroom caps with onions and peppers. (I hate onions and peppers.) Everyone else dined on steak, and I’m still not really sure why I couldn’t have that; when I asked the caterers, they got really rude. But definitely no one has been that attentive to me at a wedding – I’m slightly jealous!!

  4. You would have loved my wedding earlier this month, which was 100% gluten-free! Which a lot of guests found difficult to believe, I guess because they’d heard that all gf food tastes like cardboard. We even got tons of compliments on the cake…so many that I only got one bite of it. I haven’t attended any weddings since my diagnosis–I have one coming up, and I’m expecting not to eat–but your experience sounds amazing!

  5. This sounds amazing!! So glad you had a great time. More and more I am getting treated like a normal person at weddings and other events. It feels amazing!
    Our wedding was 100% gluten-free. The entire menu! In lieu of a wedding cake, we served warm gluten-free chocolate lava cakes, in individual ramekins to each guest. It was really fun.
    Adorably, my second cousin’s girlfriend at the time, whom I had never met, who was also gluten-free, came up to me at the end of the wedding to tell me “Thank You”. She didn’t know I was gluten-free and could’t believe she could eat absolutely EVERYTHING, I think her mind was blown!

  6. One of my best friends is getting married in a few weeks. I am thrilled for her and will go, but I’m not looking forward to the gf awkwardness. It will be my first big event since being diagnosed.

  7. I am actually shocked to hear how gluten-friendly this wedding was!! I am SO happy for you!! Some of my worst gluten-free events were weddings. I’ve been diagnosed for 10 years and that means I have attended multiple weddings where I have had to call ahead to get the chef to prepare a tasteless meal for me or sometimes just decide to wing it and later regret it. (I’m sorry, but it’s just really embarrassing to walk into a wedding with a lunch bag.) Just two years ago, I went to a wedding (and sadly didn’t have time to pack a ‘snack bag’) and thought – ah, there’ll be SOMETHING. No. There was NOTHING I could eat. From the fried appetizers to the salad with croutons already mixed in to the 3 types of pasta and warm bread on the tables. Even my own wedding was not gluten-free (9 years ago). We had a regular wedding cake (to have something beautiful to look at) and my mom made a small one-tier gluten-free lemon cake that I could eat that fell apart as I tried to eat it. We had a huge buffet dinner – that I never even saw (although, the hotel did bring me a gluten-free entree for myself). Just sad. So, BRAVO to your friends for making it a gluten-free and WORRY-FREE evening for you!!! I hope we all have more of those in our future.

    • I hope the next wedding you go to blows all of these others out of the water. Damn! I’m so sad for you!!! Your own wedding cake was disappointing? Phhhhhpt.

      • Thanks, I do too…but, my most recent experience just a few months ago wasn’t much better. There was nothing I could eat on the appetizer table and it was a buffet dinner – complete with sauces on everything (oh, and beef as the main entree – which I also happen to be allergic to). I was able to eat a small salad, but that was it. It was a cold outside wedding though, so I just survived on coffee. Again, with all the bad wedding experiences I have had – please be extremely grateful for the experience that you had!! (And thank your friends on behalf of the Celiac community as well!) And yes, 9 years ago….there weren’t many options for cakes – so i didn’t even get to eat my own wedding cake. But, my then-husband-to-be wasn’t much support either – so, he is now my ex-husband. And while my new husband and I got married on the beach in Hawaii…. he made me a very tasty gluten-free chocolate “wedding” cake when we got home. 😉 All’s well that ends well.

  8. We’re planning our (very small) wedding this fall and we’ve been very lucky to have caterers that “get it”. I hate it when I’m at a function and my plate is different than anyone else’s (I was at a banquet recently and everyone at our table had white plates and mine was BRIGHT red!); so why would I do that for my own wedding. Therefore, we’ve picked out menu items that can be reasonably easily customized for all our guests’ dietary restrictions. We have 2 celiacs, 1 vegetarian, 1 vegan, 2 nut allergies, 3 shell-fish allergies, and a fruit allergy…oh and did I mention that there are only 17 people who will be in attendance!
    The last thing I want to worry about at my wedding is getting glutened.

  9. I volunteered to cater my brother in laws upcoming wedding, so that myself and 2 children will be able to eat safely, I can also cater for my vegetarian nieces. It will be buffet style and their will be only 2 gluten dishes out of the 12 being served and one will have a gluten free version as well.

  10. Pingback: Gluten-Free Los Angeles: Rosa Mexicano | Gluten Is My Bitch

  11. That’s awesome – two gluten free friendly weddings! I always ask on the RSVP card if there is going to be anything gluten/dairy free I can eat there or else I’ll bring a snack – hoping that people won’t want me to bring a snack to their fancy wedding and will provide me with food. It works sometimes, but I never get any dessert, I might have to start bringing my own cupcakes or macaroons… My wedding was pre-diagnosis, but I was dairy free, most of the stuff was dairy free, including the chocolate fountain, I got the dark kosher chocolate so it wouldn’t have any dairy, the guy tried to talk me out of it saying most people prefer milk chocolate, but it was my wedding and I love dark chocolate!

    • Um, yeah, sure, buddy, as a person who gets to “enjoy” other people’s weddings dessert-free, I want to 1) suffer again, through my own damn wedding; 2) go out of my way to accommodate all of the folks who make no effort to accommodate me and, most importantly, 3) perpetuate the injustice on all of the other folks who have allergies and intolerances.
      Yeah, absolutely.
      SMH. That guy was a friggin’ genius.

  12. So I should report that my sister-in-law’s wedding turned out pretty well. It was a buffet, but I managed to track down the caterer before things got started, she told me what was safe and alerted our section first when the eating commenced, so we could get up before things were all contaminated. And I brought my own damned dark chocolate. 🙂
    Next wedding is a nephew in September. They’ve already spent multiples more than what all three of my weddings (one was a renewal and that wife passed, in case anyone thinks I’m serial or whatever; marriage is tough work and I want credit for never bailing 😉 ) cost (which is fine, but just want to put it in context) but are hinting for help. I told my wife we should offer to pay for the cake but only if it’s gluten-free. >;-p

    • Actually what I should have reported was that the wedding and my sister-in-law were both beautiful and a great time was had by all. The gluten-free eating is what turned out pretty well. The rest was great.

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