Swiss Coeliac Society
Before I went to Basil, I contacted the Swiss Coeliac Society who were very helpful in linking me on to a pdf of places throughout Switzerland who catered for coeliacs. Unfortunately I was unable to try any of the restaurants out in Bern as they were all closed on Sunday! Now I’m from London, restaurants don’t shut and most certainly not on a Sunday! I found this incredibly shocking. I guess it is refreshing but also a bit crazy.
German coeliac / gluten free travel card
As I’ve said before my German is non existant to world war 2 films limited so the gluten free card in German proved invaluable to me. I used it a lot. I would highly recommend getting one.
All The Chocolate I Did Not Eat As The Shops Were Closed On Sundays!
Hotel D Basel
Before going to Basel we wrote to the Hotel D asking if they would be able to provide gluten free bread for breakfast and they said that this was not a problem. Indeed on arrival at the hotel they confirmed that they had gluten free bread for me and to ask reception staff for it in the morning (the reception area is close to the breakfast area). Sure enough in the morning we went down and asked for the gluten free bread and it arrived. The bread was a seeded bread. It reminded me very much of the gluten free bread that I had tried in Denmark, in that it was dark and a bit like a rye bread in taste. It was nice to have something different.
My GF Bread
In the lower ground floor in the food section. There isn’t a specific ‘Free From’ section but dotted around the supermarket are lots of gluten free specific items like gluten free bread, pasta, cereal, biscuits etc. On Saturday evening we were shattered after a hectic week and a very delayed plane so cheese and salad sandwiches were on the menu. We found lots of great things.
Basel Train Station
Lots of naturally gluten free things were available at the supermarket type shops here including cooked boiled eggs (the shells dyed different colours).
The Bears of Bern Were Hibernating
Bern Train Station
In addition to all the chocolate shops, Bern station also contains Tibits and McDonalds (although they don’t do gf buns they have chips should things get desperate. Please double check that these are still gf).
Tibits is a chain of vegetarian restaurants which have a novel approach. Basically they have a massive buffet – normally I would say run, don’t even think about it just RUN, however everything is clearly labelled for vegan, gluten, lactose, onion, garlic, chilli and a few other things! Aside from being a buffet they charge by the weight of your plate. It is a bit expensive as they don’t take off the weight of your plate but I ate well and safely. There are two Tibits in Bern, both are open on Sunday. The one at the station is a mini version of hell, the other is more chilled out and seems to be visited by locals rather than day trippers.
It goes without saying that what they have on offer changes day to day but there was a very good choice of naturally gluten free dishes when i was there. Some of the things I saw were: a quinoa tabouleh, amaranth with aubergines, plain rice, potato wedges, guacamole, various antipasto dishes, curries, chick pea dishes etc. It was very possible to eat here and fill up without missing gluten free bread. The staff were extremely helpful and while I was lucky in that I found someone who could speak English it was definitely worthwhile having the gluten free card in German with me.
No gluten free desserts that I could see.
Basel Airport / Euro Airport
The Airport’s Offering
To say there is not much here is an understatement. Fortunately I was able to find a filling salad box from a cafe in the arrivals area. Once past security things are very spread out and there is very little to eat past chocolate or gluten.