This afternoon I had the honor of attending the Atlanta Gluten Free and Allergen Free Expo as an official blogger and it was such an amazing experience. I took my friend Melissa and my roommate Gabe. Melissa is peanut-free, tree nut free, shellfish free, egg free and dairy free. Gabe, my roommate is Gluten Free and Dairy Free and I am Gluten Free and lactose intolerant (but I relied on lactaid to get me through the expo.) As you can see by all the speech bubbles in the photo, we are not an easy crowd to please. But let me tell you, we ALL had an incredible time.
We started off with the nut free section so Melissa could fill up on some goodies. The GFAF Expo is divided into two types of “tents” the red tents are nut free and the blue tents contain nuts, however we did find a few nut free goodies in the blue tents for Melissa. We started off with our favorites that we already knew about, Enjoy Life, Glutino, Udis… but then we were introduced to Rice Wraps and I think we spent a good 20 minutes there!
I first heard about Rice Wraps from the GFAF Expo twitter account during the days leading up to the Expo. Rice Wraps is a way to make sushi easily! They sell frozen sheets of rice that you can easily defrost and roll and my friend Melissa decided to try it out and roll her own sushi!
Melissa did a such great job in making the veggie sushi that Gabe and I bought some rice for ourselves and are looking forward to making our own sushi this weekend!! (I will be sure to blog about it!)
We also made a pit stop at Home Free. We originally heard of home free because they sell their cookies in Cox Hall which is one of the dining locations for students at Emory University. We tried their new Lemon Cookies and we were all fans! We also ran into a fellow Emory student there!
Next we visited Rudi’s where they were making Quesadillas using their wraps and Daiya cheese and Melissa tried her first quesadilla.
On to the blue tents! We stopped at Earth Fare. We are SO excited for its grand opening at Emory Point this July. We told the women working the booth that we were looking forward to the Emory Point location and they gave us coupons for the grand opening! Unfortunately I will have graduated by then and will be back in New Jersey, but I am so excited for all my friends!
Next I visited Mikes Hard Lemonade. This summer an article came out saying that Mikes was now gluten free, but my mom and I were still skeptical. We kept finding conflicting information online and I was nervous to try it. When I saw it, I would only have a sip just because I have felt good for so long, I didn’t want to make a silly mistake and make myself sick. However, I now know the truth because they were at the Gluten Free Expo!
Mike’s Hard Lemonade is now crafted to remove gluten. This means it is still a malt beverage but it only contains 5ppm of gluten and FDA considers 20ppm or less to be gluten free. Obviously this would be a personal choice for any Celiac but after seeing them at the GFAF Expo today, I am confident that I will be able to drink it safely.
I also visited one of my favorites during my time at the expo, Go Picnic. Unfortunately by the time I got there they were out of most of their samples but I was given 2 boxes to try. I surprisingly haven’t had either one before, because my go to boxes are usually the Sunbutter and Turkey Stick. Next on my list to try after these two are the edamame kale dip, almond butter and turkey pepperoni!!
My favorite new product I tried at the Expo was i heart keenwah. I tried the sea salt truffle puffs and immediately bought a bag for my dad because I know he is going to love them! Heres hoping I don’t finish the bag before I see him next 😛
As a previous expo attendee I knew that eating lunch before attending would be a big mistake and I was not wrong! Glutino was making grilled cheese, Smart Flour Foods made pizza, Rudis had quesadillas and then there were tons of breads, cookies, and crackers to round out my sampled lunch. Long story short, I had an amazing time for my second go-around at the GFAF Expo and I have already marked the date in my calendar to go again in October when it comes back to New Jersey and I am taking my friend Lexi with me!
Vendors visited/ Samples Tried from:
Ardenne Farm, Redbridge, Bakery on Main, Bhakti Chai~, Crunchmaster, Earth Balance, Earth Fare, Enjoy Life, Garden Lites, Glutino, Gluten Away, Go Picinic*, home free, I heart keenwah*, Kinnikinnick, Coconut Bliss, Mikes, nona lim, Pascha, Rice Wraps*, Udis, Rudis, San-J, Smart Flour Foods, Sprouts, Sunbutter, Sallys Gluten Free Bakery and so much more!
~- sample collected, but haven’t tried yet. I saved my stomach space for the fresh stuff 🙂 (will update after trying)