Cavallo Nero Trattoria in Ancaster

Recently we had a joint birthday celebration with family from out of town. Instead of one party having to drive two hours to visit the other, we decided to meet in the middle and go out for dinner. The halfway point put us around Hamilton, Ontario — an area I had yet to explore since my gluten days. My mother-in-law found Cavallo Nero online, a restaurant located in Ancaster, Ontario. It showed promise since its website said, “We pride ourselves on serving only the freshest ingredients by adopting the farm to table approach with our local partner purveyors.”

Cavallo Nero has a decent sized dining room with nice décor. We had a great round table in our own little area which provided the opportunity for conversation that everyone could hear and follow. Too often you go out for dinner and can barely hear the conversation across the table.

Cavallo Nero Gluten Free Pasta

Gluten free wild mushroom penne with chicken

I had the Wild Mushroom Chicken served with gluten free penne. The pasta dish was comprised of field mushrooms, spinach, and chicken breast with a white wine cream sauce. The mushrooms tasted quite good, but overall it was somewhat average. It tasted more like pasta in mushroom soup, and my bowl was pretty full of liquid. The sauce really didn’t coat or stick to the pasta.

The staff was aware of my food intolerances, and always made sure that everything they served me was gluten free; even going so far as to give me a printout of the pasta noodle ingredients. I wasn’t sure whether to be glad they were trying their utmost to take care of me, or to question why they thought that 100% corn pasta might not in fact be gluten free. Either way, the staff was very nice and was conscious of preparing my food safely (ultimately what you hope for at all restaurants).

The highlight of my meal was the Pinot Grigio, it was lovely. Very smooth and light. Sometimes I find ordering a glass of Pinot can be hit or miss at restaurants, but this one was a real winner and my sister-in-law and I really enjoyed it. It was Villa San Martino, Pinot Grigio 2013 from Italy.

When it came time for dessert everyone except me indulged. Unfortunately, they didn’t have any desserts that I could eat. They had gluten free gelato, but it had guar gum in it. Why?! Why do we need guar gum in so many products in North America?

Overall, everyone was pretty pleased with their meals, enjoyed their wine, and had a great celebration.