I have found more amazing restaurants and bakeries because of Find Me Gluten Free. Recently this lovely app told me that there was a local bowling alley that had gluten free burgers, pizza and beer that was made in a dedicated area.
This was a pretty hard to believe statement, and one that I had to research myself.
So on a Friday night, my husband and I found ourselves in Flushing, MI trying to track down Jack's Place. When we pulled up on Cherry street, we weren't sure that we were in the right location. The name Jack's Place was on the building, but we weren't sure that it was open. We finally found a door and let ourselves in.
Jack's Place is a local bar that has a small section of bowling lanes, as well as a stage for bands. When we walked in (and apparently through the back door) the bowling lanes were to our left. The lanes were closed for the evening, so we walked up to the bar to ask some questions.
When I asked about the gluten free options at their establishement, they had the cook come out to meet me. AJ explained that they have 2 areas in the kitchen. One area is where they prep all the "regular" food. Then they have one station on which ALL the gluten free food is prepped. AJ said that he understood about the issues of cross-contamination and that he had 2 years of culinary school. While they do use the same toppings to top both regular and gluten free pizzas, the pizza crusts come in their own tin and the pizzas are cooked in it as well.
About the time I finished talking to the cook, the owner John came and sat down at the bar. He was an incredibly nice man and took the time to talk to my husband and I. So I asked him to tell me more about his establishement and why he was offering gluten ree options.
It turns out that their head chef Jim has celiac disease. Jim knew that if he was needing gluten free options, someone else out there would be as well. After all, 1% of the population does have celiac disease. I told John, the owner, that I was the president of our support group and that we had a lot of knowledge of gluten free companies. He liked a lot of my suggestions and I think we might talk further in the future.
He excused himself shortly after our burgers arrived. My husband ordered the olive burger and I ordered the mushroom swiss burger. I've never had one before, and know I realize that I have been missing out for years. Their burgers were so good. I will be completely honest and say they weren't the best buns I've ever had (and I gave some suggestions to the owner of companies he might check out) but the idea that one could have gluten free burgers, beer and bowling is amazing! And yes you read right, they have gluten free beer. They carry New Grist beer and Woodchuck Cider in bottles, and Angry Orchard Hard Cider on tap. When I asked my husband the thing from our dinner that struck him the most, he said that the quality of the food was amazing, even though the outside of the building seemed a bit sketchy.
After finishing our dinner we talked to Heather, one of the lead staff at the place. She asked how our dinner was and I was able to ask her a little bit more about the building. She explained that they are undergoing a major renovation there at Jack's Place. They are updating their bowling lanes, as well as their bowling balls, pins, shoes- everything. She told us that this location used to be a car dealership, and the bowling lanes used to be the showroom. By her enthusiasm, I'm assuming she's involved in the renovation, as she was talking about wanting to replaint the place and the decorate the outside. I think she's wanting to use some of the colors found in the older cars to tie the history of the building to its future. I find that really great.
I'm really excited for them and hoping to see the transformation after it is finished this summer. We are hoping to take our support group there this summer after all of the updating and do a celiac bowling outing.
Great job Jack's Place! Can't wait to see what your future has in store.
Labels: restaurant review