Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Gluten Free Travel , Flying and Hilton Head Island, South Carolina

This was my first time traveling gluten free. I went for 4 days, we flew, and went to stay with my in-laws with children in tow. Months before we left, I was panicking, thinking about what on earth I was going to do. I would think about how this gluten free life was changing me, and would change how I would travel too. No just stopping in diners for quick breakfasts or lunches. No just trying a restaurant, or going out for the day without food prepped and ready.

And every time I thought about it, something would tighten in my chest, and I would start to cry. I loved to travel, and I wanted to travel the same way I always did. I put travel off while my children were young, and I wasn't feeling well, and now, I am feeling better, the kids are a great age, and now, I have to worry about my food.

Then I decided to forget about it, and let it just happen. And, it did, it was wonderful. I didn't get glutened once, and we ate out twice, and I shared a kitchen with a bunch of gluten eaters as well.

My mother-in-law was incredible - planning her menus around what I could eat. She even bought an all purpose gluten free flour and made a banana bread for us. My mother-in-law is awesome. I was really touched by her efforts and understanding.

I wanted to share a great restaurant we went out to eat at, the Old Oyster Factory right on Hilton Head Island. I called ahead, and was treated wonderfully, and most importantly, I was not served anything with gluten in it, or on it. I apologize for not taking pictures, I forgot my camera. I consulted with the waitress and she communicated with the chef, and I got blacked mahi-mahi with veggies with olive oil and lemon. It was fabulous. Go there if you are in Hilton Head, it was wonderful, and child friendly.

Of course I brought my own food for the plane ride, and we all know what to do for that; it was a short flight so I didn't need too much. I was lucky that Logan Airport, in the gates for Delta, had a Wendy's. I got a baked potato and chili to carry on board for lunch.

My family is planning to go to Ireland in June; this was a good practice run since that one will be a longer flight, and a longer trip. I really wanted to post this since when I googled Hilton Head and gluten free nothing came up; I am hoping that this helps some one else.


Ginger said...

How funny! I was at the Old Oyster Factory in March and here is where I wrote about my experience.
Sounds like your experience was a little smoother than mine!
Ireland should be easier as there are a lot more Celiacs there.

Slacker Mom (aka Mrs. GF) said...

Ginger that is funny.

I wonder if they had different staff on...the chef was very cautious, which of course I appreciated. :)

Yes, I am getting a lot more information about should be very interesting.

Rachel said...

Mrs. G.F.
I was happy to read your post about South Carolina. We will be travelling to Foley Beach and Hilton Head next week. I am looking for gluten free friendly places to eat and am not having a lot of luck. Thanks for the tip about the Old Oyster Factory. Did you have any luck with other restaurants? My e-mail address is

Karen herselfGF said...

Thanks so much for the tip on the Old Oyster Factory! I am on my way to Hilton Head tomorrow and have not found anything online to help. I am taking my usual GF stash of food for the plane ride (much longer for me).

A tip for you on your overseas trip: order a gluten free meal ahead of time for the plane. I flew recently to Paris on AA and their GF meals were so good others were envious. I also researched GF resources in Paris before I went. Health food stores were helpful, but generally waitstaff in Paris and Brussels were more aware of gluten intolerance and were more accomodating than here.

Have fun!


Slacker Mom (aka Mrs. GF) said...

I hope you had a great trip!! And, thanks for leaving me one as well, I love how helpful all the gluten free people are. It is a great community.

Let me know how it went!

take care,
Mrs. G.F.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your post! I am going to Hilton Head tomorrow, and was also disappointed at the lack of restaurant reviews. If anyone has a tip please email me...


Laurel said...

I just ate there last night! I had delicious grilled tilapia, also with the lemon sauce and steamed veggies. The server was very helpful in communicating with the chef, and made my experience there quite enjoyable. I would definitely go back!

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