Gluten Free Grubspots - Maggiano's Atlanta

This past weekend I on behalf of Bakery On Main I attended the inaugural GFAF Expo in Atlanta! I wanted to locate a great gluten free grubspot to recommend to "y'all", so I did some asking around. Turns out, the ladies from GFAF had eaten both lunch and dinner on Friday at this place called Maggiano's and thought the food was awesome. Maggiano's is a chain, so you may be familiar with the restaurant. I had never heard of it, so I decided to give it a try. I can tell you now it was a great decision and I had a incredible experience. I was staying at the Renaissance Hotel at Waverly Place in Atlanta, and Maggiano's is located just across the street at the Cumberland Mall. When I arrived at Maggianos, the restaurant was packed so I decided to take a spot at the bar. When I asked the bartender for a gluten free menu, he handed me their regular menu and mentioned that they could switch out the pasta on any of their dishes for gluten free pasta! Then he disappeared for a minute. When he returned he was with the Sous chef, who took the time to not only take a selfie with me (see below) but also to talk through the menu and take my order down on a special "Allergy Alert" order pad! To start, I selected the Tomato Caprese as an appetizer. If I had to choose it would probably be my favorite appetizer of all, so I really couldn't pass it up. It came out in minutes and was absolutely delicious. The sliced tomatoes were fresh and had the perfect amount of crunch you would expect. Delicious! For my entree, I chose the "Rustic Chicken and Shrimp" which was labeled as one of their specialty pasta dishes. As with my appetizer it didn't take them long to bring this out to me. It arrived nice and hot and beautifully put together. I knew right away just by looking at it, there was no way I was going to finish it. In addition to the chicken and shrimp the dish was put together with gluten free ziti, Prosciutto, Asiago cheese, and a red pepper cream sauce. The description was spot on and the portions of chicken and shrimp were bountiful. I would recommend this dish if you are working on a empty stomach as it is extremely filling. The cheese is heavy and as I thought, I wasn't able to finish it. (Note: You could probably even share this dish!) I was really surprised at the taste and texture of the pasta in the dish. It was probably the best I've ever had, I could hardly tell that it was free of gluten! I did ask the bartender if it was made in house and he told me it wasn't but was unsure of the brand. He grabbed one of the managers who told me that they use Mariella gluten free pasta! Good to know and another example of fantastic service. Instead of just telling me they didn't make there pasta in house the bartender went and found an answer for me! In conclusion, if you find yourself at the Cobb Galleria Convention Center in Waverly Place (which is quite a distance from downtown Atlanta, about 30 minutes) Maggiano's is located directly across the street at the Cumberland Mall and is a fantastic option for those with food allergies because they take special care to ensure a quality experience for their patrons. As I mentioned previously, Maggiano's is a chain so be sure to look out for them in other cities as well! For better living, Bill