Gluten Free Restaurant Reviews for Florida

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Disney Cruise - Dream
Review Type: Cruise Ship
Location: Port Canaveral, FL
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Trip Type: Family meal/vacation
Travel Dates: May 2011
Review Posted: May 15, 2011
Map It Disney Cruise - Dream

 

Beautiful cruise ship, but needs work to improve gluten free diet

My family and I just came back from the cruise on Disney Dream. While everyone was impressed with the beautiful new ship and entertainment, I thought the gluten free diet could be better. The service in the restaurants was very slow. 2 hour dinner every night with small kids is not what we were expecting. The waiter would take the order and you wouldn't see him till the end of the meal. There seemed to be a lot of waiters and assistant waiters walking around, they either seemed to be frazzled, or didn't speak English and were useless.
Even though when I booked the cruise, I specifically stated that 2 members of our family need gluten free diet, there was a lot of confusion when we came to dinner the first night. Thankfully the head waiter Kendell, was very helpful. He arranged special meals for my daughter and I. They even sent them on the island for us. Lunch and dinner was pretty easy to accommodate, and it tasted good. Breakfast was a different story. He did order pancakes and waffles for us, but it tasted awful, plus there was a lot of confusion of finding those special meals, when he wasn't there the first morning. While there was a load of delicious food for everyone else, it was very frustrating to see the limited supply of GF breakfast foods. They didn't have any gluten free bagels, muffins, or bread. They only had Energy brand hamburger buns, and I don't care for them. They brought them to us every dinner, and one time for breakfast, since they didn't have anything else. Sometimes they were cold, which tasted horrible. For breakfast the waiter said they heated them up in the microwave, but they had bar marks like they were heated in the toaster. I was concerned to eat them, because I wasn't sure if it was a regular toaster that they use for regular bread. In this day and age there are so many gluten free products that taste good, and easy to freeze and store, it was very disappointing. I was glad to have 2 small bags of Chex cereal that I brought on board, and some corn crisps, and my daughter and I were happy to get by with those for breakfast. They did have a lot of fruit and yogurt. I'm just happy it was only a 3 day cruise. I always bring some gluten free snacks with us, but I didn't bring so much, because Disney is supposed to be so great with diet accommodations.
Out of 4,000 passengers, you'd think we were not the only ones on a gluten free diet. I've read so many rave reviews about Disney restaurants and hotels and other ships, but I was not impressed at all with the diet handling and service on their new ship. While it was clean, modern ship with an amazing technology, it still needs a lot of work with better waiter communication and better diet foods.


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Karen Broussard is the Founder and President of GlutenFreeTravelSite. Karen launched GlutenFreeTravelSite in 2008 after her son was diagnosed with Celiac Disease at a very young age. She and her family found that dining out and traveling could be a real challenge for people following gluten free diets, and she wanted to provide a place where the gluten free community could go to share their experiences first-hand with others.

In addition to heading up GlutenFreeTravelSite, the DINE GLUTEN FREE Mobile App, and the Gluten Free Travel Blog Karen is an Associate Editor of Simply Gluten Free Magazine and volunteers each summer at Camp Celiac in Rhode Island. A graduate of Georgetown University with a degree and career in Marketing, Karen resides with her husband and two sons in the Washington, DC area.

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