A couple of months ago I bought an Entertainment Book, with the idea that having a bunch of vouchers would prompt me to try some cafés and restaurants that I wouldn't otherwise have tried. One of the first vouchers I noticed was for Fig Tree Café, in Heretaunga. This café is local to my grandmother, and I had heard her speak its praises before. I had also read a review in a local magazine which mentioned that they had gluten free options on offer, so I was quite keen to get out there and try it.
Fig Tree Café
I organised a little family lunch out there. When we arrived, we were pleased to have booked, as the place was packed. Of the counter food, a vegetarian frittata was marked as gluten-free. I could get that by itself, or with a salad and bread option. I asked if they had gluten-free bread, otherwise could I have two salad choices instead. I didn't really expect them to offer gluten-free bread, but they did, and when it came out it was seriously good - soft and fluffy on the inside, and good and crispy on the outside. It was definitely a very fresh bread, not the heavy shelf-stable packaged bread I somewhat pessimistically expected. The frittata itself was good too, which I had with greek salad and a fresh carrot, apple, and ginger juice.
My Frittata and delicious bread
Food to my left and right (neither GF nor vegetarian!).
For desserts I had even more options - they offered gluten-free chocolate torte, ginger slice, and pavlova. I ordered chocolate torte and swapped a bit with my grandmother for some ginger slice. Both were good, but the chocolate was my favourite - less sugary but definitely richer than the ginger.
Fig Tree Café, located in an old chapel, offers an unusual and pleasant dining venue. They also offer a range of deli goods, and host a BookCrossing Zone. It seems that the frittata is their only regular savoury gluten-free dish - however the fantastic gluten free bread and range of sweets on offer makes the café worth a visit. (Um, unless you're vegan :( - I think even most of the salads had cheese!)