About a month or two ago I received a free copy of the new Triumph Dining The Essential Gluten-Free Restaurant Guide, 5th Edition. I have been sitting on doing a review for that long. Mainly I haven't used it enough to give a fair review (I don't have the funds to be going out a ton) and the places I want to go out to eat are smaller places that are not in the guide. That said, I have used it more than I expected, mainly because I am in a new city and its been helpful to find new places and be reminded of old standbys that are close by.
-general information about gluten-free dining out
-state-by-state listing of restaurants that offer gluten-free menus or are able to provide gluten free meals
-alphabetical list of chain restaurants that have gluten-free menus or gluten-free options
This section was surprisingly awesome. It provided really good, honest information about going out to eat and how to successfully and appropriately convey what one can or cannot eat. The author discussed his first-hand problems and issues in the opening - a nice personal touch. The book clearly is meant to work with Triumph Dining Cards, which is a logical pairing for the company, but its not overly pushy.
I have actually used this more than I first thought I would. Being new to the D.C. area it has been a great way to become a bit more familiar with some options. On more than one occassion I have thought about just storing it in the car rather than on my bookshelf because I think it would be a lot more useful there.
Alphabetical List of Chain Restaurants
This is helpful for getting a lay of the corporate food land in terms of gluten free options. Probably not my first choice, but again really helpful when traveling.
Other helpful bits
The symbols and short hand notations about price and gluten free accommodating restaurants vs. ones with gluten free menus is really helpful. As is the information about remembering that businesses and restaurant practices can and do change and its important to always ask and check ahead by calling and then re-asking servers about dietary concerns.
Overall, I probably would not have purchased this book for myself. When I go out to eat I am mostly looking for cheap, local eats. Chain restaurants tend to be more expensive and not what I am interested it. That said, This book will be with me for road trips. I will pack it with my car maps for certain. It probably falls under the good-gift-category for someone newly diagnosed, a person that just moved to a new part of the U.S. or someone who travels a lot.