Silent Cal


  • Bertucci's

    3 starsApril 28, 2014

    847 Riverdale Street, West Springfield MA 01089

    The West Springfield location of Bertucci's hasn't failed me yet with GF dining. The staff--and hosts--are attentive and aware. While the menu isn't deep, the offerings include appetizers and entrees with complex flavors...not the stripped down "order without..." warnings of some competitors. There is only one dessert...a sophisticated bittersweet chocolate mousse-like pudding...but it never disappoints. What I like about this Bertucci's is that it feels like a one-off, not a chain, and that is high praise indeed. Update: October 31, 2013. I hadn't been to Bertucci's for awhile, and checked the GF Menu online. For some reason, the chianti sauce was no longer GF, leaving me a dry seasoned filet mignon as a disappointing choice. The excellent Budino mousse-type dessert was also gone, replaced by another dessert that required omitting the toppings to make it safe. This was a HUGE step backwards. I went to Outback instead. I e-mailed the chef at Bertucci's corporate HQ asking why they had backed away from their terrific old menu, but got no reply.

  • Delaney House

    5 starsFebruary 19, 2013

    1 Country Club Road, Holyoke, MA 01040

    While a formal gluten-free menu has been a recent addition, this one-off white-tablecloth restaurant and banquet facility has always accommodated gluten-free patrons by making adjustment to some of their broad selection of entrees. No, this is not a dedicated gluten-free facility; few fine dining establishments would be able to operate under those restrictions--nor should they. But more than reasonable accommodation works for me. Before I had to go gluten free, I was an extremely adventuresome diner; Delaney's grill menu [they also have an informal pub, called The Mick] allows me the kind of free choice that has restored my delight in dining out, once again. Their specialty is aged beef, but the other menu choices are so broad as to make choosing difficult. Last night, I had roast duck with garlic green beans and a butternut risotto that was so amazing, it has become one of the top five food experiences of my life. If you're traveling through New England, call Delaney House and make a reservation for the grill rooms. You won't be disappointed.