A week in Spain and no tummy aches

July 4, 2010

We’ve just spent a sunny week in the north of Spain finding it really easy to order coeliac-friendly food. A young waiter in a seafood restaurant even pointed at English Boy and asked us if he was “celiacos” when I explained that we were allergic to wheat and gluten and needed to avoid bread and flour. It was fantastically easy to find the food we could safely eat.

Admittedly, I had done a little homework. I took beginners Spanish lessons about 7 years ago and could remember a few phrases. I also bought a Spanish gastronomic dictionary and wrote all of the words I knew I would need regularly in the back. This was a fantastic move and I took it everywhere with me. In the supermarket it was vital to decipher ingredients lists for tortillas, chorizo, breakfast foods and desserts. In restaurants it broadened our choices greatly and once I had explained our food allergy issues to the waiters in my broken Spanish we received excellent service from waiters who knew about coeliac disease and were very willing to help.

We also experienced excellent service at our hotel after requesting a gluten-free breakfast every day. The kitchen staff provided gluten-free corn flakes, coco pops, sweet biscuits, unbreaded ham, and crispbreads. They also overheard us discussing soya milk and the next morning they had bought some for us!

If you are travelling and don’t know the language I strongly recommend getting a culinary dictionary. It simplified every eating decision and took away the doubt surrounding meals ordered in my very unsophisticated Spanish.

We stayed at Hotel Codina in San Sebastian and received wonderful service.

Keep an eye out for tips for gluten-free travelling in Spain and a menu and label reader in my next post.

Related posts: Tips for gluten-free travel in Spain


One comment

  1. […] Related posts: Tips for gluten-free travel in Spainand A week in Spain and no tummy aches […]

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