Monday, April 13, 2009

RESTAURANT: Panera Bread Bakery-Cafe



Panera Bread Bakery-Cafe

Locations: National Chain

Locations We've Visited:
Superior - 302 Center Driver - (720) 304-7000

Gluten-Free Options: None of their bread is gluten-free, but several of their soups are gluten-free and most of the salads can be modified.

Total From A to Z: 3 Stars

A's Review: * * *
I wasn't holding my breath for Panera to have much for Z to eat. And they didn't. But what they did have were well-trained staff and a binder that told at a glance what was GF. Some of the soups and most of the salads were fine, which is not half bad from a bakery.

Z's Review: * * *
Maybe it isn't fair to walk into a bakery and expect to be able to get something gluten-free, but I knew Panera also serves soup and salad (in addition to sandwiches and baked goods), so I thought it was worth a try. When I asked the cashier if any of the soups were gluten-free, I was delighted to find out that she had a list of which ones were and was able to tell me right away. She even apologized for not knowing off the top of her head! Their soups vary from day to day, and the day I visited two of them were gluten-free: the black bean soup and the creamy tomato (ordered without croutons). Most of their salads also use gluten-free vinaigrette dressing and can be ordered without croutons. They will also substitute an apple or potato chips instead of a baguette as a side. So, despite Panera being a "gluten-full" bakery, I was able to enjoy a gluten-free lunch of black bean soup and orchard harvest salad with a side of potato chips.

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