Photos and Words by Jonathan Caflun
When you move to a new city, what is the first thing you want to do? Walk through town? Explore? Catch a local sports game? For someone like me, the absolute must is to understand the local food scene. Freshman year at Boston University was exciting. The North End, Back Bay, the Seaport. What exciting places with some great Boston food. The problem was, everywhere I went to eat, I got sick. Was Boston’s food so bad? Was there something wrong with me?
It turned out that my first year as a college student, going out to eat every single weekend in new restaurants and new foods, I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease. Meaning I am fully allergic to gluten or anything containing gluten, wheat, or barley. This disease effects smaller than 1% of the United States, and I unfortunately had to get stuck with it. I came back to school sophomore year healthier, but with a dilemma. I did not know where to go, what to eat, or how this would change my entire college experience. So if you are like me and have Celiac Disease, are gluten-sensitive, or just interested in Gluten-Free eating for the sake of being interested, I will be here to help. In my series “Gluten-Freeify Me,” I will be doing reviews of Beantown restaurants best associated with favorite gluten-friendly diets for college students, starting with Salvatore's.
Salvatore’s not only accommodates Gluten-Free dining, but they welcome it. With a no-shaming attitude, every dish can be prepared GF and they take the highest precautions. When I usually have to ask for a Gluten-Free menu, Salvatore's already provided it for me. The extensive Gluten-Free menu offered Gluten-Free pasta, pizza, and chicken dishes. A big chicken parm guy in my pre-Celiac days, I definitely have had this dish many times before. I can say this now; the Gluten-Free chicken parm at Salvatore's was hands down the best I have had.
The chicken was breaded and fried golden crisp, the parmesan cheese just oozed over the top of it, and the tomato sauce was vibrant with tangy tomato and herbs, coating a bed of gluten-free rigatoni pasta. Eating it, you could not even tell that it was gluten-free! Upon completion of my meal, I approached Chef/General Manager Ryan Pozerycki at the hostess stand. He was so nice, gave me his card, and asked me to email him to continue the conversation. I went to Salvatore’s on a whim, never hearing about it, and it is now one of my favorite go-to restaurants in Boston.
225 Northern Ave. Seaport District, Boston.
Price: A dinner date only cost around 55 dollars.
Atmosphere: Lively, energetic bar. High top tables. Back room seating.