Pizza Hut - Gluten free review part two
Posted on the 17th May 2012 by
We love a challeng
e – and a gluten free one at that! This year’s theme for Coeliac Awareness Week is to encourage the nation to follow a gluten free diet for one week with a focus on eating out. This aims to raise awareness with caterers of special dietary requirements and coeliac disease. We sent our mystery diner to do just that and investigate the gluten free offering in Pizza Hut. Becky has worked at DS-gluten free in the customer careline, she doesn’t follow a gluten free diet but armed with 3 years experiences in the gluten free sector she set out to review Pizza Hut’s gluten free offering.
Missed the first installment? Read part one of the Pizza Hut gluten free
Beware of the salad bowl
"Nice waiter" had carried my gluten free pizza base back to the kitchen and then reappeared with 3 salad bowls. Apparently these
were a free side dish. Bearing in mind I’d pointed out my requirements the waiter didn’t pre warn me which items were gluten free at the salad buffet. As well as naturally gluten free options, pasta, croutons and some suspicious sauces were also included. Pizza Hut also use prongs for their salad bowls so there’s no guarantee a prong for the cucumbers hasn’t been in close contact with the croutons. Unless staff are a 100% sure no cross contamination has occurred I would suggest to swerve the salad bowl or ask for your own to be separately prepared.
Pièce De Résistance – The main meal
Our mains had arrived and I noticed my gluten free pizza was placed on a different plate to my fellow diners. Mine was also already sliced, normally Pizza Hut provide people with their own pizza slicer so maybe this was to ensure I didn’t use one that hadn’t been washed properly etc.
Despite the onions being incinerated the gluten free pizza itself was delicious. The staff were also quite attentive and asked if everyone was ok throughout the meal so I had ample opportunity to ask more questions if necessary. As I mentioned in part one, because I’m not actually gluten free I wouldn’t be able to tell if I was accidently "glutened" so I wrapped up a slice in a napkin to take back to the lab for testing. (Results to be revealed at a later date)
The Ice Cream Factory
We were all full from the main course, but I was curious to see what was gluten free on the dessert menu. Unfortunately, there was nothing with the exception of the ice cream factory. I knew from childhood visits to the “factory’ that as well as ice cream there are usually sauces and different toppings available. I asked “nice waiter” what was gluten free and he came back with the Pizza Hut dietary information guide and informed me that the smarties and jelly bears were but the chocolate digestives were not. Also on closer inspection of the sauces they say in the allergens “contain milk” but it was only in the dietary bible that we learned the sauces are produced in a factory where gluten is present. I stayed clear of these!
Payment and Pizza Bases
I was charged nothing extra for a gluten free pizza but then again I was charged nothing less for providing the base! Due to the extra care taken in preparing a gluten free pizza I was expecting an additional charge. Let me know if you think the price should be higher or lower by commenting below.
There are two individually wrapped pizza bases in a DS-gluten free pizza base
box so I asked if Pizza Hut could keep the spare if I wanted to order a take away at some point. We’d heard in the DS offices that some Pizza Hut outlets allowed this but we weren’t sure if it was some sort of myth! “Nice waiter” assured me that this was possible and offered me his pen to write my name on the box – result!
The verdict on the hut
The staff were very approachable and happy to help, they constantly reassured me that I wasn’t a burden and were eager to answer my questions. This high level of service made a real difference. However, the instance at the salad bar highlighted me to the fact that there is a real need for more training in catering outlets. I also think in the future that restaurants should clearly mark what dishes could be made gluten free to make it easier for diners. In terms of an experience it has taught me how difficult it can be for someone eating out gluten free, especially for the first time. I know from friends that this does get a lot easier and even becomes second nature but I’m far off becoming a natural! I really hope that more people attempt a gluten free dining experience to relate to those with special dietary requirements and raise awareness of coeliac disease overall.
To celebrate Coeliac Awareness Week DS-gluten free are launching a restaurant review competition, the winner will be the review which whets our appetites the most! We want to hear what gluten free food your restaurant offers, how the staff handle a gluten free follower and your experience overall. The winner will receive £100 restaurant vouchers to the chain of your choice and your review will be posted on the DS blog. Simply email your experience
to our friendly Careline to be in with a chance of winning. No entries will be accepted after 31st May and the winner will be announced before 30th June 2012.
Terms & Conditions
1. The competition is open to UK and ROI residents except employees and their immediate families of DS-gluten free, their agents and anyone professionally connected with the promotion.
2. Only one winner will be selected
3. The winner will be the person who writes the most apt. and interesting review according to the judges.
4. The competition will close on the 31st May.
5. The winner will be announced before 30th June 2012.
6. The winner will receive a restaurant voucher for the maximum value of £100 to the chain of their choice.
7. Should there be a problem with obtaining vouchers for the restaurant specified an alternative restaurant will be chosen.
8. The prize is non-transferable Unless otherwise agreed in writing with DS-gluten free, the prize will only be awarded directly to the winner. No cash alternatives are available for the prize. In the unlikely event the prize becomes unavailable DS-gluten free reserves the right to substitiute with another prize of equal value.
9. Please allow 28 days for delivery.
10. DS-gluten free has arranged this competition in good faith. DS-gluten free reserves the right to change, modify or cancel the competition if circumstances make this unavoidable.
11. By entering this competition you agree to be bound by the terms and conditions.
12. The judge’s decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into.