Thursday, March 31, 2011

CLOSED: Restaurant Review: qba: a cuban kitchen (Montclair, NJ)

I went last night with my Spanish club to qba (128 Watchung Ave, Montclair, NJ).  I had checked out their menu online first and it looked like there were some safe options.  The cuisine is Cuban and since I can usually navigate Latin American cuisine I wasn't too worried.
Chicken Mojito with Maduras and Guacamole at qba

When I got there I confirmed with the staff what was and wasn't gluten free and dairy free.  They were much more confident on the gluten free items but double checked with the chef for the dairy free items.  (In their defense, they've only been open about a month and a willingness to ask and make sure is better than you get in most established restaurants!)  It turned out that most of the gluten free items were also dairy free.  (Note: the chips are made from wheat which is sadly common in Latin America - one night in Peru I asked at a dozen restaurants before giving up on having chips made from corn that night.)

The restaurant is quick serve in the style of a Chipotle so you get to watch everything assembled in front of you.  They aren't a chain yet but hopefully they'll be expanding soon as it is always nice to have more dining options.  I had a bowl with rice, black beans, and pieces of steak in a citrus-garlic marinade.  I also had an order of maduros (sweet plantains) for dessert!

When I was leaving I noticed a sign on the front door that noted that their entire menu was gluten free with the exception of the wraps, chips, sandwiches and Empanadas.

I really can't wait to go back!

qba A Cuban Kitchen on Urbanspoon
Update 4/27/12 - unfortunately qba has closed.

If you are looking for other options try NJ Gluten Free Restaurants and/or GF Fast Food and Chains.

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