Monday 12 November 2007

Fructose Friendly Dining Out

A reader sent the following email to us:

I am a fellow sufferer of fructose malabsorption. I found myself on Friday night in the middle of the city stuck for places to eat.
Finding wheat free is the easy part, but onion free seems to exclude so much (it’s in so many sauces and the basis for most dishes), that we ended up at Melbourne Central food court with tasteless salads feeling rather depressed.
I’ve managed to modify diets at home with ease, as we tend to cook everything from scratch which is actually a blessing in disguise, but eating out continuously proves a problem.
There is increasing awareness about gluten free at restaurants now, but nowhere is fructose friendly, or able to be modified to fructose free because of the onion. I was wondering if you’d come across or knew about any places in and around the city that you could find a quick, relatively cheap eat without having to worry about onion or simply order a bowl of chips (boy am I sick of ordering chips).
I thought maybe it would make a good blog entry.
If not, and in the future I come across some myself I will let you know.

We couldn't agree more. Onion is everywhere and very hard to avoid. We have the same problem and get very disheartened to the point that we would rather not go out at all versus eating something and end up regretting it.

So, we have started a list of the places that we know of. These are places that either adertise themselves as being fructose friendly and/or they are flexible enough with their menu and attitude to enable diners to avoid fructose un-friendly ingredients.

The list isn't large, but with your help, we hope it will become so.

The usual disclaimer applies: Check with the venue first. Talk to the staff and let them know your requirements. We have no connection with these businesses other than as happy customers.

  • Silly Yaks Bakery - 105 High St.,Northcote Phone: (03) 9482 3999
    This cafe/bakery will be well known to coeliacs in Melbourne as they sell a large range of GF cakes, bread, pizza bases and even their own range of GF beer. This is a must visit location especially for a great breakfast that goes most of the day.

  • S.Komatsu Restaurant - 62 Wellington Parade,East Melbourne Phone: 03 9415 7266
    We haven't visited here as yet but S.Komatsu advertises itself as gluten free, dairy free and fructose friendly. Some friends have dined there and really enjoyed it. This will be a dinner destination for us very soon. UPDATE: Unfortunately, S.Komatsu is currently closed

  • Crust Pizza - Various Locations
    This is a new gourmet style pizza chain that also is very aware of food allergies. Gluten and Dairy free pizza bases can be requested and you can build your own pizza using the high quality, fresh ingredients that they have. (None of that pink, processed stuff that other pizza joints call ham).
    Crust have been awarded the Heart Foundation Heart Tick for 6 of their pizzas. Reported in "The Age on 12 Feb 2008

  • Sandbelt Club Hotel - 630 South Road Moorabbin, VIC 3189 Phone:(03) 9555 6899
    This hotel was recently renovated and the bistro now offers gluten free options and the staff are very knowledgeable and very willing to please. Dishes such as the roast of the day and fish of the day are my choice as the fish (salmon sometimes) is simply grilled and presented with a good selection of steamed vegetables.

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Please let us know if you try somewhere and would like others to know about it. Email us at:

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Gluten Free Life said...

We ate at s.komastsu last year. It was great to discover a totally gluten free restaurant, but when we looked at the menu, it was really difficult to decide what to eat because the dishes sounded rather odd. We persisted (if it wasn't gf, we would have left and tried somewhere else), and to our surprise the food tasted great! It is definitely worth eating at this restaurant, even if it is just to show that there is a market for restaurants that cater for wheat/gluten free.

Aimy said...

Just tried Komastsu. It surprised me with the quality of the food. It was really yummy! Not something that I would relate to "free-from" food. I also appreciate the friendliness and honesty of the staff. All the food there is wheat and lactose-free, but it's only fructose-friendly. If you only have a mild/moderate fructose-intolerance, it should be ok for you.

Anonymous said...

I ate at the Press Club in Flinders Street recently and they were very accomodating with my request for a wheat-free onion-free meal. They had delicious gluten free bread that actually tasted like bread (!) and had no problem preparing separate dishes for me. I wouldn't put the Press Club in the cheap or quick category, but it was great to have night out without worrying about what was in each dish and/or feeling awful the next day.

Unknown said...

I was happy to discover gluten free pizza bases available too... but even though you can build your own pizza choosing fructose free ingredients, there is still the problem of tomato paste or BBQ sauces as the only options for the sauces they put underneath (both not fructose friendly options). Idea's anyone?

Unknown said...

Mia - I ask for fresh tomato instead of tomato paste on the base when ordering a pizza. Not quite the same... but still good.

Crown Pizza (1357 Toorak Road, Camberwell) are also good for gluten free. They also have soy-cheese, which is great for the dairy intolerant.

Sharon said...

Fox in the Box in Martin St Brighton will ask at the time of making your reservation if there are any dietary requirements. They will adapt the menu to suit fructose, lactose and gluten free alternatives. The food is great too~

Tigerion said...

For quick and easy we have found the noodle box is a good option.
If you can find a store that has the little computer thing you can choose what you want in the box and they will make it up.
Some rice noodles and a selection of veg and you have your meal. It does come down to your selection so not really fructose friendly (Choice of sauce could be an issue for severe cases)
But works for us

Anonymous said...

Yeah good tip about the noodle box. I've found they can even do just meat and veg without the noodles if you want (but sometimes gets a bit leaky through the catboard box without the noodles to soak up the liquid.

Anonymous said...

Pizza Farro on Nicholson St, Carlton and High St, Thornbury are great for fructose malabsorption - they make spelt pizza and pasta, which I think still contains gluten.
They do have gluten free pizza bases, though I haven't tried them.
The spelt pasta was delicious, but all of the sauce options had a lot of onion (as a main flavour, so unavoidable unless you want a tasteless meal), but the pizzas seem to use crushed tomatoes instead of tomato paste and gave me no stomach trouble.
More expensive than a regular pizza, but big enough to share.

Anonymous said...

Hi all, if you live in Melbourne Victoria Australia I have the best Fish & Chip shop if as well as being FM /FI you have gluten issues (they can come hand in hand) Fish Galore & More, run by Steve & Debbie at 117 Mountain Hwy, Wantirna Victoria. Tel# 03 9887 4100 Just in case you want to talk to them. They ask all th...e right questions, they know what I am talking about... & no pain, no symtoms... Go eat em!! lol

helen said...

I have type 1 diabetes, fructose intollerance and a paralysed stomache and due to parkinsons disease i have to eat all my food pureed I am only 40 and am married with two children and I want to be able to go out for dinner sometimes with my family or even get take away. Does anyone have any ideas as to where I can go I live near Dandenong in Victoria Thank you any help would be appreciated even if you know of any food I can get from shops.

Anonymous said...

I have severe fructose malabsorption as well as gluten intolerance. I find I have to prepare most of my meals from scratch. I use cheese spread or just cheese on my pizza instead of the tomato paste. It helps to stick the topping and tastes just as good. I live in Nth Qld and its hard finding places to out eat here as well.

Anonymous said...

i have severe fructose intolarance and am struggling with it alot , drives me insane i would appreciate any help at all on what i can and cant eat , ive researched it but it feels like its impossible to eat anything that tastes good..

Anonymous said...

I also have severe Fructose Intolerance and used to find it so depressing going out for dinner with friends and not being able o find ANYTHING on the menu I could safely eat...I have come up wih a solution: go to thai or indian places...they cook most of their meals fom scratch so it's easy for them to leave out the onion (or any other troublesome foods) yo just have to ask. Since doing this I have been able to go out for dinner with friends and family and not feel left long as we go thai, indian, malaysian etc I am always safe and symptom free!

I also have to mention the BEST bakery in melbourne for ALL intolerances and allergies...Just Yummy in chirnside park (I live an hour away and it is so worth the drive!). You can ring and order through exactly what you want and pick it up fresh (and usually still warm from the oven) the next day. I do a big order once a fortnight and freeze it until needed. I have sent many people to this bakery and they all rave about it! It is DEFINATELY worth a visit!

Anonymous said...

If you want to eat in, try its excellent !!

Anonymous said...

I live in Geelong and suffer from severe IBS and fructose mal, to the point where I vomit after eating something containing the wrong ingredients. My issue is also finding places that have options for me. Some places I've been to have said "pretty much everything has onion in it or is marinated in onion". I get it, onion tastes good in food, but really, eating chips doesn't cut it! I have in the past eaten anyway and paid later but I'm not willing to do that anymore. Guess its home cooking for me!

jax said...

I have a severe case of fm and im intolerant to gluten.crowns ribs in reserviour is great for gluten free pizza and woodfire pizziera in ivanhoe are awesome - the staff are great and pizzas are large not lil small base,so i take the rest home for lunch the next day...woodfire pizza plenty valley is great too!. i also eat at canton housein plenty valley where i make my own noodke box up...ohhh i ask for a pesto base on my pizzas its yum or i get just tuna and some bocconci its delish! i eat pretty bland which is doing my head in but i react with acne,sore stomach,headaches,fatigue and reflux :( and im over the ill feeling n acne.ive recently been seeing a chinese herbslist where i have accupuncture n take herbs they told me to eat like an asian,so i have and feel great....

Holly said...

Fox in the Box in Brighton is PHENOMENAL! I'm and impossible case - the good ol' gluten/fructose/lactose/FODMAPS - and if i want to go out it means i have to sacrifice either fructose/lactose/FODMAPS and suffer for a few days.

The owner Tim is fantastic, he is exactly the same as me and will keep you laughing and come round for a chat, they will cater for almost anything.

No wheat, gluten of onion! HELLO!

Andrew said...

WOW Entice Restaurant in Murrumbeena has a 100% gluten free option menu and also I think nearly 100% fructose friendly options. They make everything to order and adjust your meal to suit your requirements. Great food, friendly service like their facebook and follow as they do great offers too last week was a gluten free fructose friendly chicken parma!

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