Last night, we (my boyfriend and I) checked out the brand new Hickory’s Smokehouse that’s just opened in Burton Green, Warwickshire. We were going to try it out regardless, but my ears pricked up when my boyfriend said they have a gluten-free menu (‘woohoo!’ I thought). As those with IBS know, eating out can be tricky, but it’s made much easier when meals are adapted with sensitive stomachs in mind. I’m not coeliac, but find that a diet lower in gluten equates to a happier stomach. So if the choice is there, I always opt for gluten-free when eating out, particularly since there are often other high FODMAP ingredients that can’t necessarily be avoided.
Upon arrival we were greeted by very friendly faces and a bag of popcorn – yes! You heard right. A very good start…I don’t know about you, but sometimes, when you go for a meal you’re really hungry but don’t necessarily want a starter in case it fills you up too much (oh us IBS-ers know how to live!!) – popcorn IS THE ANSWER! The atmosphere was great – a nice buzz in the air and that glorious smokehouse smell.
I asked for the gluten-free menu and eagerly scanned it. I was in one of those moods where I knew what I wanted, despite the extensive range of choice (as you can see).
I wanted a BURGER (although the halloumi was really tempting me too!) and opted for the Hickory’s Burger. I completely forgot to ask for no onion (duh!), but no matter as I just picked it out from the burger and gave it to my boyfriend. The team at Hickory’s were on the ball and they went out of their way to check that the food was being enjoyed. This instantly puts you at ease and paints a good impression for going back. I felt that I could have asked them to adapt the food and it would have been no problem. I’m ashamed to say the burger beat me – I just couldn’t finish it! I’ve learnt with IBS that you have to listen to your body and it’s not wise to stuff your face – I find smaller meals are better for my stomach. Did I have dessert? I wish – no room sadly! Although for anyone interested, the menu does say gluten-free options are available.
Would I recommend Hickory’s Smokehouse for those with stomach sensitives? BIG FAT YES. Will I be back be dessert? BIG FAT YES. Very happy to have this place as my new local.