Visiting Truro and worried about finding a place to eat that caters for gluten free and dairy free diets?
Heading out to eat with food allergies is tricky at the best of times.
And when you’re visiting a new city, finding GOOD gluten or dairy-free food is harder than trying to spot a unicorn in the wild.
But don’t worry.
Our allergy expert, Creating Rebeccah, has been on the case and sampling these tastiest eats and drinks around Truro (and the surrounding area.)
She’s rounded up some of the best spots in Truro where you can relax and indulge on fantastic gluten free and dairy free dishes. Adding to this, she’s getting around in a wheelchair so you’ll have the rundown on accessibility everywhere you go.
The Arts Cafe
Vibe: Filled with comfy leather seating and sundrenched chairs, this cafe offers a small menu cooked to perfection. We tried there for breakfast/brunch (from 11 am) and it was a delight. It was buzzy but also peaceful and felt like a well-kept secret.
Food: The gluten-free and dairy-free options were clearly labelled on the menu and the staff were well trained in cross-contamination and knowledge of the menu and kitchen in relation to food allergies. I had gluten and dairy-free toast topped with poached eggs and bacon. The eggs oozed out over the crisp bacon and every mouthful was delicious and heartwarming. They had several gluten-free cakes available on the menu from a local bakery called BB’s Bakery, one of them being dairy free but sadly I could not try it as it still contained gluten-free oats. The coffee, particularly the ‘flat white’ was also reported as excellent.
Access: The front terrace and lower level of the cafe are both wheelchair accessible from the street. However, in order to get to the larger area of the cafe I was directed to the ramp entrance to the Royal Cornwall Museum and then through their small gift shop to access the cafe. The tables were spaced out enough to allow a wheelchair past to choose an appropriate table for your needs. The staff at the museum also let me use their disabled loo which had enough space to get my manual wheelchair into.
Chair Comfort: 4 / 5
Verdict: You could easily wile away the morning here in the relaxed, friendly environment. The staff were helpful, kind and efficient and the small fresh menu had enough choices for restricted diets.
Bread and Butter
Vibe: This is opposite to Bread and Butter’s main cafe and is solely dedicated to takeaways. If like us, you did not book their main cafe, this was our only way to test out their offerings. The lady that served us was warm and welcoming. Expect a friendly service but not a fast one. The small queue of people behind us really did not seem to mind the not-so-speedy service. The woman took time to speak to us, and even though in my wheelchair my eye level fell well below the counter she made an effort to speak to me.
Food: All the cakes on display looked amazing and I was thrilled to find there were several gluten-free options that would not look out of place in a patisserie. I explained my multiple food allergies to her and she went through the ingredients of each of the cakes with me. even better, the ingredients were easily available on laminated cards by each cake, making it easy to choose what I could have and be certain what I was eating was safe. I chose a raspberry friand, one of the best gluten and dairy-free cakes I have had. The almondy sponge was moist and not overly sweet, with a hint of marzipan and contained a juicy raspberry in the middle. It was topped with a thin layer of tangy raspberry icing. All the flavours complimented each other perfectly. They even stocked four dairy-free kinds of milk so I could enjoy an absolutely delicious decaffeinated coconut milk flat white. The range of treats for people without food allergies was also excellent and the lemon drizzle cake not only looked fabulous but was also described as flavoursome and delicious.
Access: Not accessible. The door is narrow, there are two steps going up into the premises and I had to be lifted in my wheelchair up the steps. There is also limited turning space once you are in there. The counter is very high.
Verdict: The lady serving us was incredibly friendly and helpful. The display of food was very enticing and it is definitely worth popping in there for your takeaway rather than going to a chain.
Vibe: Hub Box is situated inside an old Church and has a delightful looking outside patio area. It is definitely somewhere that catches the eye amongst the independent restaurants in Truro. However, I did not actually eat here, instead, we decided to get a takeaway! The website is fantastic, every step of the ordering process is thought out very carefully and they cater magnificently for food allergies. Not just in providing food for people with multiple requirements, but making it so straightforward and easy to order to your exact specifications online. It is one of the most reassuring places I have ordered from in years as their approach to cross-contamination is topnotch, “we do fry our gluten-free products separately, we have separate fryers just for this. All of our gluten-free products are also stored separately from everything else, to minimise the risk of cross-contamination” (Hub Box). The vibe when ordering is easy, clear and reassuring!
Food: We all went for their burgers, but I ordered the children’s beef burger, with dairy and soya-free cheese and a gluten-free/dairy-free bun. The children’s order included a side of fries. The order arrived well-wrapped and still hot, and the portion size was good. So much so that my family commented that it could easily be a normal-sized portion. The beef was tender and tasty. The bun was soft and did not fall apart. The chips were skinny and delicious! I really enjoyed my meal. It is not often I can have a takeaway so this was a real treat.
Access: There are 2 steps to get inside the building, although the door is wide so can fit a wheel chair in if you can get up the steps. Alternatively, you can sit outside the front easily enough during warmer days and evenings.
Vibe: This super trendy takeaway wouldn’t look out of place in London and yet it is discreetly placed in the small but beautiful beach village of Porthtowen. It is only about 15 minutes from Truro and worth a visit for the best fish and chips I Have ever had. It is a small shop which, due to its popularity, suggests you order ahead via their website which was very easy to use. Be prepared to queue outside on busy evenings as the shop is taken up by a sleak counter and kitchen.
Food: All their fish and chips are gluten and dairy free here by default. They do not make a big sing and dance about this so people without allergies quite happily indulge in Seasmiths offerings and do not even know it. The food is that good! For those of us with allergies there is no risk of cross-contamination and all the allergens are clearly listed on the ordering system. No need to ask pesky time-consuming questions or ingredients if you are coeliac, you feel like everyone else here. It is definitely the best fish and chips I have had. The battery was golden and crisp, the fish flavourful, flaky, soft and very substantial. The chips were hot and plentiful.
Access: There is step-free access to order or collect your meal and then a flat pavement to take you down to the beach to eat your meal.
The Great Cornish Food Store
Vibe: This is a fantastic store. The Great Cornish Food Store is attached to Waitrose on the outskirts of Truro and is well worth a visit. It is bright and welcoming with lots of different products from all across Cornwall available from a butcher’s counter right through to packaged goods to delicious patisserie. I sent my mum off in search of some gluten and dairy-free patisserie to see if there was anything unusual. I have to say everywhere I went in Cornwall had plenty of choices for a gluten-free diet. I was delighted when she returned with two raspberry and two blueberry french Macaroons. Delicate and small, but such an amazing find.
Food: Back at the lodge we had cups of tea and curled up to enjoy our find. Freshly baked by a local french style patisserie these are such an unusual find. Rarely, in the UK can you find gluten-free ones (even though they are supposed to be) and hardly ever can you find ones with dairy-free fillings! The blueberry one was good, although the sugar overpowered the flavour, but the raspberry one truly was exquisite. Sweet, but with a stunning raspberry kick to its centre. Two was enough to quench my sweet tooth. The delicate, crisp shell melted on the tongue and sweet fillings tantalised the tastebuds. If you are looking for something special that you know is not mass-produced and made locally heading to The Cornish Food Store is a must while you are in the area.
Access: Easy wheelchair access, with enough room to manoeuvre. As it is attached to Waitrose there are disabled parking spaces and a disabled loo which is very handy.
Rebeccah is a health and lifestyle blogger but she comes at life in her own unique way. More often than not you’ll find her enjoying a cup of tea in the sun or sampling the very best local restaurants. Here’s the twist, gluten and dairy free are top of her list when eating out and about. While her mode of transport is a wheelchair so she’ll give you the lowdown on accessibility as she goes, whether that’s finding the beach or grabbing a Michelin star lunch.