Tuckers Tavern | LBI

A long time ago, there was an island off the south coast of Long Beach Island called Tuckers. It was populated by people until one day a massive hurricane came thru and wiped out the island (this sounds like gluten passing through my gut). The bridge between the islands was torn down and Tuckers island was left deserted once everyone was gone (wish I could do this to my gut sometimes). I don’t know if anyone was hurt during the hurricane, hope not. But the memory still stands through a restaurant called Tuckers Tavern in LBI.

I usually won’t pass on these kinds of stories since it has nothing to do with gluten free. But the story is interesting and always caught my attention. They do offer some gluten free items on the menu but I wouldn’t dine here without a big group. I couldn’t take too many pictures as I was with a big group and didn’t want to be annoying. Sorry, but after all, the point of this blog is to be gluten free AND socially acceptable (not annoying). Thankfully my girlfriend is tolerant of this endeavor when just the two of us go out to eat, most of the time.

FOOD (7.1)

The food is just decent here. Nothing special according to my taste buds but nothing bad either. Satisfactory is probably the best description. I’ve eaten here a bunch of times and they only have a few gf options on the menu so my overall food experience has been limited. This last visit I had the Viking Village Dayboat Scallops for the first time which comes with four scallops, bacon-sweet pea risotto, grana Padano and tomato pesto. The sauce is the best thing on this plate. I love scallops but they NEVER fill me up enough at dinner. I also had the Braised Vidalla & Potato Soup for an appetizer which was pretty good. Didn’t get a picture of the soup but trust me, you’re better off not seeing it. The soup looked gross AF but was actually pretty good.

Tuckers Scallops

DRINKS (7.0)

Just like the food, nothing special here. The cocktail list is standard and the spirit/wine selection is standard.

SERVICE (6.0)

Remember, this is written from the gluten free standpoint so whether they are nice or attentive to my drinks is irrelevant here. With that said, the service for gluten free eating is very chain like. They come over – you tell them you have a gluten allergy – they point out the gluten free items on the menu acting like you can’t read even though you’ve stared at your 5 options for about 20 minutes by this point – you ask questions – they can’t answer and refer you back to the menu – you play it safe and order based on the labeled menu choices. Does this routine sound familiar? Very standard. I did actually have a server tell me once that corona’s are gluten free if I wanted beer. We all know that rumor and how not true that is. I’ll let that one slide. You are better off solely trusting the menu.

On the other hand, you could end up with a server who is overly cautious like I just had. There was a salmon special my girlfriend was ordering that sounded safe for me. But the waiter advised me he couldn’t be certain and that I should be safe and order a marked gluten free menu item. I obliged, but luckily I had Nima with me and tested the salmon my girlfriend ordered, including the sauce. Nima approved it which was a pleasant surprise. I appreciate the caution, but a little communication with the kitchen would have been nice. Either way, better safe than sorry.

MENU HONESTY (9.0)

There are items on the menu clearly marked gluten free. The two items I ordered, along with others in the past, have all been gluten free. Plain and simple. The only reason they didn’t receive a 10 here is because they don’t offer any disclaimer or info on their kitchen prep practices. Would be nice but the menu does a satisfactory job. Plus I’ve never been sick here so they must be doing something right back there. The biggest downside is there aren’t many options. Maybe 1 or 2 items from each section but beggars can’t be choosers I guess right?

DID I GET SICK (NO)

I’ve never gotten sick at this place. Not once. Like I said, they must be doing something right. My last meal was even fully approved by my Nima Sensor.

OVERALL (7.0)

This place is simply satisfactory in terms of gluten free eating. I typically only go here with large groups of people. I wouldn’t order their food out or crave anything from their menu but it is nice to have an option that is gluten free accommodating where my friends and family will enjoy it also. Can’t complain when we have options, right?