If you are in the mood for good, quality gluten free Mexican food, Chuy’s is NOT the place to go! Mexican food is one of the best foods to eat if you are living a gluten free lifestyle, being that many of their dishes are made with corn, rice, and protein. This place, however, did not have many options. Here’s the low down.
I was craving fish tacos last night. Like, mahi mahi, or tilapia, grilled to perfection, topped with cabbage, cilantro, guacamole, black beans and spanish rice. Finding Chuy’s on my iPhone was exciting as we were not sure of the restaurants in the area. After waiting more than 45 minutes for a table, we sat down to order, and I noticed that the menu had no separate gluten free section, nor did they have one on reserve for those of us needing it. So I created my own taco after asking the waitress if they had grilled fish options. I ended up ordering grilled tilapia on a soft corn taco, with beans and rice. The waitress came back to our table, shortly after ordering, stating that the tacos are NOT gluten free and the manager will be over to go over my options.
So here she was, the manager, stating that the taco could be plain grilled tilapia, no beans since they have gluten in it (she never stated what was gluten related in it), and the rice was cooked in a fryer that also cooks breaded food and their fried flour tortillas and chips (spanish rice in a fryer?!). She said that the chips were not gluten free since they are made on counters and equipment that produced wheat. Oh, and the only sauce I could have was tomatillo sauce. I asked if the guacamole was, in fact, gluten free, and she said it was, so I ordered a side of that, too. I also ended up with a side salad due to the fact that the sides were not gluten free friendly. Not very many options, but I went with it since I was already extremely hungry.
When my food came out to the table, I have 2 corn tortillas with 2 cold, thin over-grilled pieces of tilapia laying on them. Accompanying them on the plate was a small bowl of purple cabbage and another bowl of cilantro leaves. Then, a plate of salad with lemons on the side (P.S. I ordered cilantro lime dressing, which turns out doesn’t even exist). It was pathetic. I had to ask 4 times for my side of guacamole and the tomatillo sauce. When the waitress finally brought them, the guacamole, no exaggeration, was smaller than a quarter of a dollop (and it was pretty much just avocado mashed up with some lime in it). I made the best of it and ate. Very bland, and dry. The topping on the taco was that when the check came, I was charged $2.50 for that small little “scoop” of guacamole. I immediately took care of that and had it removed.
What it comes down to is this. Chuy’s, although people will say it is great, is not gluten free friendly. If it wasn’t for a very knowledgable manager (which I give props to), I would have been in a lot of pain after eating food that was loaded with hidden gluten. Join the movement, Chuy’s, and get on board the gluten free train.