PF Chang’s, the pioneers in creating a great gluten free menu for a restaurant. Pf Chang’s was one of the first big restaurants to offer an amazing gluten free menu beginning all the way back in the early 2000’s. They have always had an amazing selection of gluten free items as well as understanding managers who are trying to educate their staff to best serve their gluten free guests. We were so lucky to enjoy the company of a great (and hilarious!) man who knows about just about more about PF Chang’s gluten free menu than anyone, Chef Gregg Piazzi, Culinary Operations Manager for PF Chang’s. I first met Gregg in 2010 when he sat on our chefs panel for our annual February Celiac Disease Foundation support group meeting of “Dining Out Gluten Free”. He was so cheerful and kind that we knew we just had to have him back in 2011. That event was just not enough though so we also asked him to be a guest judge at our annual gluten free bake-off event in May. He and Chef David Hall, another friend of ours who was also a guest judge, just made us laugh all evening. They are now on the schedule to be our annual May entertainment and judges. Chef Piazzi is such great company. Our evening at PF Chang’s proved that once an for all. Though we had to bring our two little guys along, he was patience and still made us laugh all night. He is always so personable and fun to be around. PF Chang’s is lucky to have a great representative like him on their staff. Some of the things we learned while dining with Chef Gregg was that over 100,000 gluten free plates were served by PF Chang’s last month alone. Can you believe that? Amazing! There are multiple International locations including those in Kuwait and Dubia. Many more are planning to open soon. PF Chang’s recently received the brand new Kikkoman gluten free soy sauce that has even more delicious flavor, I think. This should make the preparation of gluten free dishes even more similar to the regular menu items in flavor. Gregg was so kind to send us home with a bottle!!! We are set on soy sauce now for a long time I think. One final note before we get to the food is that PF Chang’s really tries hard to educate their staff on gluten and trying to do everything to avoid cross-contamination. One of the pre-cautions they use are to serve everything that is gluten free on a logo plate. I really love this extra step they are talking for their customers.
For the gluten free feature we reviewed many wonderful menu items. First we started off with the Egg Drop Soup. It was warm and comforting with excellent subtle flavors. I love this soup and could eat multiple bowls of it.
The signature Chang’s Chicken Lettuce Wraps were the next thing up on the review. Cool, crisp lettuce created a great vessel for the delicious Wok-seared minced chicken, mushrooms, green onions, and water chestnuts with crispy rice sticks. The ingredients married so well together. The flavor was wonderful. I love that the rice sticks also add another dimension of crispy to the dish. These yummy bites are served with a gluten free soy sauce, hot mustard and chili paste sauce that you can make as mild or as hot as you prefer. I enjoy mine very spicy so as to add just a little kick to the lettuce wraps.
Shanghai Cucumbers were something I had never tried before but Gregg suggested so of course, we didn’t pass up. They were a great little treat to snack on throughout the meal but especially between courses. With only four ingredients, these are very light and tasty. The mixture of gluten free soy sauce, cucumbers, sesame seed and sesame oil create an excellent balance.
We had multiple delicious entrees including this, the Ginger Chicken with Broccoli. It tasted very fresh and full of great ginger flavor while also not being too heavy. This dish is actually quite a healthy choice, especially if you eat all the veggies on the plate.
Mongolian Beef was another dish we had. It was actually my favorite (and always has been) on the gluten free menu. I love how the scallions are almost caramelized in the meat and sauce. They are a nice addition to great cuts of tender flank steak. This is such a tasty dish!
Chang’s Spicy Chicken is my second favorite dish. There was just enough spice to give it great taste without burning your tongue. I loved the perfect combination of spices and meat. Each piece of chicken was a nice, white piece of meat.
Fried Rice was our final entree and was served hot and oh-so-yummy! I love the combination of chicken, egg, gluten free soy sauce, carrots, bean sprouts and sliced scallions. The flavors are so spot on that you almost don’t need any sauce on top at all. Excellent taste!
For dessert, we enjoyed the chocolate mini dessert cups. With the flourless chocolate cake on the bottom, then chocolate mousse and chocolate topping plus mini chocolate chips this dessert is any chocolate lovers fantasy! We also got to try the full-size flourless chocolate dome cake which was rich and delicious. The fresh berries were a great touch to the plate that went well with the deep chocolate.
Our evening was absolutely amazing! We just loved having Chef Gregg Piazzi with us for dinner as well. He kept us entertained all night! The manager, Peter and his great team also made this night so great. The service was excellent and the staff could not have been more cheerful. We greatly appreciated their kindness.
So are you ready to win some PF Chang’s?!
**(1) Grand Prize Winner- will be receiving $50.00 in PF Changs gift cards to use on whatever gluten free dishes their hearts desire!!!
HERE’S HOW TO ENTER: (Please leave your e-mail with each entry. If you don’t leave your e-mail, you will not be chosen as we do need some way to contact you. Thanks!
Just leave a comment in the comments section at the bottom of this post, telling me which gluten free PF Chang’s menu item sounds the yummiest to you.
*Extra Entry #1: Visit our Facebook page and tell us the menu item you would most like to see made gluten free. Leave a comment here saying you did.
*Extra Entry #2: Post about this giveaway on your blog with a link back to us. Leave a comment WITH THE LINK TO YOUR POST here.
*Extra Entry #3: Follow us on Twitter, and leave a comment here saying you did.
*Giveaway ends Friday December 31, 2011 at 11:59 PM (MST). This giveaway is open to the US only.
**I was provided with sample product from this company for review purposes on this website. I was not paid or compensated in any other way for my reviews. They are my opinions and my opinions alone.
**25 Days of Christmas Giveaways, Gluten Free of Course! Event…FREE, EASY way to snag some gluten free swag!!!
What: During this AMAZING event we will be featuring 25 hand selected companies and offering a gluten free giveaway as well, EVERY day!!! We know that gluten free living isn’t always cheap, especially at this time of year so we thought all of our amazing readers deserved a little gluten free TLC!
A new giveaway will be introduced EVERY day but all giveaways will be open through the end of December. Entries for these giveaways will be one or two EASY steps. Winners will be drawn the 1st wk. of January.
*This is our opinion and our opinion alone. We do not take any responsibility for the gluten free dining experience of others. As always, eat at your own risk as this is not a dedicated gluten free facility.