Boulder’s Kitchen Cafe Celebrates Five Years by Poisoning Blogger

Subheadline (via Kath) That’s One Way To Silence Your Critics

The Good News: Boulder’s sustainable, eco friendly and overly delicious Kitchen Cafe is turning five years in business!

The Bad News: they poisoned me to celebrate.

Let me expand, but first, some pretty food pictures:
Kitchen Community Night

Kitchen Community Night

Kitchen Community Night

Community night is a Monday Night tradition, a huge table seated by many separate groups. Food is served on a platter which forces you to pass the dishes around to your new friends. One of the better meals I have ever had, consistently.

I was taking my friend Matt Gist out to a nice dinner for coding out a family project for me.  We were also joined by Nicole Glaros and Jen Mayer.   I sat next to  Jenifer from Use Real Butter (a kick ass food blog), her husband who was researcher from CU and their two guests from Sydney.  Jenifer was amused that I read her blog.  She has a much better post on the night.  If I wasn’t poisoned, I would have a post of similar quality.  Perhaps not.  Moving on.

One of the best things about community night is the people you meet.  Generally foodies, really nice and love their wine.

Weeks prior I made the reservation for four, noting that I was gluten free during the call. Simple enough, I had done this for five community nights before, all went off without a hitch. When we sat down, the waiter (nice guy) was alerted that I was that guy on the reservation.  I should have been alerted that he really didn’t seem to take that much notice, saying to steer clear of the obvious breads.

So the meal.  It was fantastic.  Besides the whole ‘make you keel up in the fetal position for 15 hours’ bit, it was outstanding. Here is the menu, pretty kick ass offerings:

Kitchen Community Night

After the meal I tried to pay for Matt and myself, and the girls wanted to pay for their own meals.  The waiter (read: poisoner) split the bill in a way I still quite cannot grasp: 2/3 on my card, 1/6 on each of the girls.  If anyone has any logical rational for this, please let me know.  I would figure the old 1/2 1/4 1/4 would have been, well, logical.

I walked over to my office, started editing photos and doing the usual late night writing of emails and making plans.

Then I fell over in pain.  I was King John of England, the Kitchen was France.  Poison.  Something I ate had a high amount of gluten, and I was paying the price.  My body went into a sort of shock, deciding that poison had no room in its warm habitat.

Last Call at the Kitchen

I called to report what had happened.  The manager said that he didn’t know about a gluten allergy on the reservation.  Perhaps next time I should request they put in all caps GLUTEN FREE: CELIAC DISEASE next to my name.

Or perhaps I should just expect this to happen every once in a while.  I’ve seen diners hand the manager a card stating their allergies on one side, and the other side with big and bold numbers: 911.  I don’t think I am ready for that drastic of action.

In Boulder the restaurants are fantastic.  In New Zealand some of the restaurants had gluten free beer and even bread that I could eat (one such burger joint was like an In and Out style fast food place).  The awareness in that country is much higher than in the states.  The little we have up here is usually credited to the Atkins Diet, which really doesn’t cover the problem.

This gluten allergy rarely makes me really sick (I am very good about avoiding it), but is exhausting.  I can’t eat at least half of the grocery store offerings, and some menus have less than 10% that I can order (breads and pastas are the highest margin items you can sell).

Sometimes I have small amounts on accident (grated cheese from the stores has gluten to keep the graters nonstick, for instance) and I generally just feel lethargic. Now that it is 24 hours after the incident, I am feeling better.  Was very weak all day.  Felt like laying down in the fetal position until about three oclock.

But what to do?  Write a post with an overly snarky title.  Check.

Next: figure out how long I am going to feel like this.  Then: ride my new bike.

Sounds like better than today already.





18 responses to “Boulder’s Kitchen Cafe Celebrates Five Years by Poisoning Blogger”

  1. Jeffrey Avatar

    Bummer to hear about the food poisoning, usually the kitchen is very helpful with everything. I am vegan, and understand the difficulties, having been vegan for 9 years and growing up in NJ and Philly, I expect every waiter to screw up my order. I even find myself at veggy restaurants clarifying if the meal is vegan hahaha.

    Even though it is my choice and your born situation it is stressful, and I probably wouldn't be in the amount of physical distress. Simple answer, it was really Gist hahaha.

    Feel better, and act like everyone is trying to get you!

  2. Mary Avatar

    Ugh… feel better soon!

  3. brent Avatar

    sorry about the poisoning, but you buried the lead. a new bike! awesome. triple training to start in earnest soon. let me know if/when you want to ride.

  4. Jen Yu Avatar

    Hope you're feeling better today. Want to temp fate? Let's do lunch. I'm in Boulder Thurs and Fri afternoons (I guess that's tomorrow and Fri, eh?).

  5. andrewhyde Avatar

    Anytime! Would love to!

  6. jennyjenjen Avatar

    Glad you're recovering well. I can't believe the manager said he wasn't aware of your allergies. I hope it taught them a lesson!

  7. andrewhyde Avatar

    Usually they are fantastic!

    I'm cool with just blaming Gist!

  8. andrewhyde Avatar


  9. andrewhyde Avatar

    Yes, new bike rocks!!!

  10. andrewhyde Avatar

    It was a honest mistake. That or Gist. Blame Gist.

  11. jennyjenjen Avatar

    Blame Gist! That's it!

  12. Nicole Glaros Avatar

    Maybe it was from sitting on the east side of the table. Us westies were happy as can be. I'm still dreaming of that merangue dessert and the BEETS! AHH the blood red beets… So sorry dear friend it turned out badly. You should have delivered them a bag of your vomit – that would guarantee they won't make the mistake again.

  13. […] Boulder” and not your website.  Recently I became very sick from said restaurant, and wrote a post that is on or close to the front page of most common search terms for this.  When people […]

  14. davidmason Avatar

    Every time you post one of these articles, in my opinion, you further become the example of the pot calling the kettle black. This post about the restaurant, a past post about AT&T, another about Frontier airlines, and I would imagine others if I cared to look further. All are examples of poor customer service and/or public relations.

    You too are guilty of not following through from time to time. In mid July I (@davidscottmason) participated in a Twitter trending (scam) for TechStars run by you. Techstars fans everywhere answered your trivia questions, which in turn helped trend the #techstars topic. I successfully answered two questions and promptly sent my address in to claim my prize. I then waited… from July 14th til September 11th when I vocalized my discontent via Twitter about not getting anything. Turns out I wasn't alone. Another person was left out in the cold like I was. You did respond with an excuse and claimed that I should expect my prize in the mail soon.

    I even tried to go the extra mile and offered to pick my prize up from you personally at Ignite Boulder 6 on September 16th. Sadly we couldn't meet up because I know you are slightly (meaning very) busy at those events. Completely understandable.

    It is now nearly a month after that and I still have nothing to show for participating in something that you ran. I really enjoy attending Ignite Boulder events and think you do a great job. I can certainly sympathize with your post regarding food allergies and poor service. Hopefully your post will be a turning point for the Kitchen Cafe and that they build upon your criticism both good and bad. You have used your blog numerous times to enlighten readers about poor service from various places and companies. But when you complain about poor customer service yet do something similar to others you are nothing more than a hypocrite.

  15. andrewhyde Avatar

    Yep, you are right. Your prize has been in my bag (and was the night of Ignite). Sent off as soon as I read this.

    I believe strongly in both the posting economy and this quote “Is the sustainability of this new age of social media reliant on high fivers and finger pointers?”

    For the companies to really benefit, the users must post, the good and bad. You will also notice I post quite a bit positive.

  16. DoctorJim Avatar

    I feel sorry for you that after such a nice evening, you had to have to deal with food poisoning. Now there is a food intolerance cure for different types of products. Just pick the one you need and when you feel bad, you know what you have to do.

  17. DoctorJim Avatar

    I feel sorry for you that after such a nice evening, you had to have to deal with food poisoning. Now there is a food intolerance cure for different types of products. Just pick the one you need and when you feel bad, you know what you have to do.

  18. DoctorJim Avatar

    I feel sorry for you that after such a nice evening, you had to have to deal with food poisoning. Now there is a food intolerance cure for different types of products. Just pick the one you need and when you feel bad, you know what you have to do.

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