You may have heard of a Gluten Free diet but never understood what it actually meant. This diet is used to treat Celiac disease and it presents a challenge for those who follow this diet to find foods they can eat. For example anything with wheat such as bread, cupcakes, cakes, and tortillas are all off limits. Buying gluten free products at the grocery store or eating out at restaurants can be a challenge, but there are some companies taking the challenge out of finding gluten free foods to eat. Locally that company is the Gourmet Girls Gluten Free, which is the only Gluten free bakery and bistro in town.
Mary Gibson and Susan Fulton are the founders of The Gourmet Girls Gluten Free. They discovered the need for gluten free products while catering parties and listening to guest’s requests for food due to food allergies. Although neither of them required a gluten free diet they began eating gluten free when they began creating gluten free products of their own. Mary let us know that after only four days of eating gluten free she noticed a difference in her overall health and the way she felt.
In May 2010 they began selling their products (about 10 items at the time) at the Oro Valley farmers market. Farmers market’s allowed them to gain a following and really helped to spread the word about their business. Within 6 months of starting at the farmers markets they started working with a realtor to find the perfect space to open their Bakery & Bistro. They knew from the beginning they wanted to expand to a retail space because their goal was to create a community for gluten free people and have a place for them to go to eat without worrying about what they can and cannot eat. Both Mary and Susan mentioned in our interview how at their Bakery & Bistro it is very common to see strangers pushing tables together to talk about their gluten free challenges and quickly becoming friends.
Gourmet Girls Gluten Free is giving people back the foods they have been missing. Foods such as cupcakes, bread and tortillas are no longer off limits to those living a gluten free life. Mary & Susan make everything from French bread, which is a customer favorite and is some of the best French bread we have ever had, to specialty cakes for weddings or birthdays. We also found out they are currently trying to get on the Food Network television show, Cupcake Wars, and are experimenting with recipes right now. Some of the favorites have been peanut butter bacon, s’mores and lemon ginger. And if you are looking for a great breakfast or lunch spot look no further. The morning of the interview I personally tried the breakfast quesadilla and breakfast sandwich and both were outstanding.
Future plans for Gourmet Girls Gluten Free include shipping on select products so people across the country can enjoy their products. Also they are working on getting in more restaurants to give people on a gluten free diet more dining out options in Tucson. Currently Anthony’s in the Catalinas and Renee’s Organic Oven are carrying some gluten free girls products, including a selection of their delicious deserts. For more information about the Gourmet Girls Gluten Free visit their Website or Facebook Page.