1. Yes, it's a whole new look! Have questions or need help? Please post your question in the New Forum Questions thread Click the X to the right to dismiss this notice
    Dismiss Notice
  2. Seeing tons of unread posts after the upgrade? See this thread for help. Click the X to the right to dismiss this notice
    Dismiss Notice

Parallel Wine Bistro and those out there with food allergies

Discussion in 'Area Restaurants, Dining and Food' started by pvcv, Mar 15, 2013.

  1. pvcv

    pvcv New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2006
    Messages:
    261
    Likes Received:
    4
    With more and more adults and children having and being diagnosed with food allergies it is a challenge each time you venture out to a restaurant. The following are facts and statements with emotions removed. We went to Parallel Wine Bistro in Ashburn for a special occasion dinner. A member in our party has a severe allergy to one particular nut. All other nuts are fine; it’s just this one devilish nut that imposes havoc. Upon arrival at Parallel after work, we disclosed to our server about the nut allergy. The server went to the kitchen to discuss what items had the nut and we ordered accordingly. The soup and salad came out without the nut (even though the salad was supposed to have it on it) and no issues. The next course had a nut crusted (not the devilish nut) item and we both ordered that. Again, confirming with the server that the item does not have that nut. Again the server replied that no, it did not. One bite into the appetizer and immediately a reaction began. I looked for the server who was with another customer, and found another server and told them we had to leave to a nearby hospital and an allergic reaction was occurring. They did not ask us to pay (thank goodness), and said don’t worry…just to leave. 4 hours later the devilish nut had been expelled, anti-nausea medicine and epinephrine was give, then hives that were throughout the entire body had dissipated enough to leave. The owner/manager did reach out to inquire how the patient was doing and that he would cook personally for next time.

    The story did not end there. We believed our insurance would cover all the charges, but it did not cover the deductible. I reached out to the owner/manager for help in covering the charges, and was disappointed by the reply. His statement “I can’t accept financial responsibility for every person who walks through my doors with an allergy”. We were not looking for any pain & suffering or other compensation. Only the outstanding insurance costs that we incurred, at no fault of our own.

    This review and message is provided as a cautionary note to be careful and maybe think twice about going to Parallel Wine Bistro. BTW…Did I mention that we had been there several times before and had no issue? Unfortunately, we won’t be going there again. If you or a member of your dining party has a food allergy, please be careful.

    Remember what I mentioned above, per Parallel owner/manager who told us, “I can’t accept financial responsibility for every person who walks through my doors with an allergy”. We don’t want what happened to us to happen to you or for you. You should not have to incur a financial burden in additional to an allergic food reaction and that causes time spent in the hospital…at no fault of you or the affected member of your dining party.
    Best of Luck.
     
  2. T8erman

    T8erman Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2003
    Messages:
    5,179
    Likes Received:
    228
    Shouldn't those with severe food allergies be cautious WHEREVER they go?

    Based on the number of times you have been there, they have tried their best to accomodate you and now, to me, your post makes it sound like sour grapes that Parallel did not fork over any cash to cover expenses.
     
  3. pvcv

    pvcv New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2006
    Messages:
    261
    Likes Received:
    4
    everyone is entitled to their opinion. no worries. on the times we went there, we did disclose the allergy but had no issue because we ordered the burgers. it's not the money because the bill is due and we paid it, it's the expressed attitude that disappointing.

    Now I just need to sell my Parallell gift cards. Have a great day. T8
     
  4. KTdid

    KTdid Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2006
    Messages:
    3,271
    Likes Received:
    113
    Once the diner indicates there are allergies and the restaurant elects to serve the patron, the restaurant assumes the legal responsibility to serve food without allegens. Failing to follow through can be deemed as negligence. Cross contamination can easily happen in a kitchen where the same knife is used for different preparations or a particular dish could be cooked with peanut oils, dairy msg, gluten, etc.

    The restaurant should have a policy where as soon as the server learns about a diner's allergy, they inform the manager. The server is the first line of defense. Many restaurants have signs asking patrons to inform their server if they have any dietary restrictions and some post allergy restrictions on the menu; xyz dish is prepared with a sauce that contains pine nuts. Some go as far as using a separate food preparation station for allergic patron's food orders.

    Unfortunately, (and I'm not one for lawsuits), the restaurant's response was irresponsible. They should have reimbursed the medical costs and taken strict measures to improve their operation. Next time it could be a death and lawsuit that puts them out of business permanently.
     
  5. twohokies

    twohokies New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2007
    Messages:
    404
    Likes Received:
    3
    My daughter and I have food allergies to the point where if a little bit of gluten got into our food from cross-contamination, there would be excessive vomitting and other GI issues for days afterward, not to mention the months to heal our intestinal tracts. My husband and I NEVER EVER expect that dining out will be 100% guaranteed safe for my daughter or I. We're willing to take the risk or we do not eat there. There are so many places that I can not walk into anymore for risk of contamination........ it saddens me but my health is my responsibility, not the restaurant's.

    And I agree with the owner of Parallel - they can do the best they can to accommodate you, but they can not take on any financial liability. That's your risk the minute you left your own kitchen. No restaurant should be guaranteeing 100% safe just for this very reason, and honestly I never have gotten a 100% guarantee just a "we will pay attention and do everything we can."
     
  6. We Love Disney

    We Love Disney New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2006
    Messages:
    392
    Likes Received:
    0
    A nut allergy means avoiding all nuts when dining out at a restaurant. The cross
    contamination is too great.
     
  7. Rhaegar

    Rhaegar Member

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2010
    Messages:
    315
    Likes Received:
    22
    If someone has an allergy that bad then they shouldn't be taken to any restaurants and have that risk be placed upon other people.

    People have a responsibility to make good choices for their own safety, to reduce the danger that may affect them and then not to blame others and when they fail.
     
  8. KTdid

    KTdid Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2006
    Messages:
    3,271
    Likes Received:
    113
    You don't have to have food allergies to assume risk when you eat out. There's always the risk of getting hepatitis A because a sick cook could not afford to take the day off, or E-coli because the servers didn't properly wash their hands, or some pathogen or salmonella from improperly stored food. Restaurants have an obligation to serve safe food. Cross contamination is serious and you don't have to have food allergies to fall victim to clumsy food practices.

    And you think the manager inquired about the wellness of the diner out of the goodness of his heart...
     
  9. KTdid

    KTdid Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2006
    Messages:
    3,271
    Likes Received:
    113
  10. T8erman

    T8erman Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2003
    Messages:
    5,179
    Likes Received:
    228
    I agree that communication is crucial. But why take the risk by ordering a "nut-crusted appetizer". IMHO, this alone puts the majority of risk on the diner. And maybe, just maybe, there was tiny nut in the crust that got into the mix by accident by the either cook (food prep) or by a manufacturer if it is was pre-packaged.
     
  11. LMT

    LMT New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2007
    Messages:
    100
    Likes Received:
    0
    This is not necessarily a response to the OP.

    However, if I were the owner/manager of a restaurant, I would never assure any customer that something was nut-free. How can any restaurant be certain that any of their supplies had no nuts of a specific type in them? You can't know exactly how suppliers process certain ingredients.

    I'd just post a message on my menu stating something like..."we cannot assure customers that any of our products are nut-free."

    Let the customers make the decision as to whether they dine there or not.
     
  12. ayayagirl

    ayayagirl New Member

    Joined:
    May 17, 2006
    Messages:
    329
    Likes Received:
    2
    As someone who has lived with severe nut allergies my whole 45 years, I am extremely careful to avoid all nuts. Even the ones I do not react to. For me, I feel it is just easier to avoid them all rather than to try to explain to someone what I can verses what I can't eat. Also, as I have gotten older, and frequented more restaurants, I have learned of new allergens I was not aware of when I was younger. For instance, eating at Bonefish has made me aware of an allergy to pumpkin seeds. I had never eaten them before and they are in the pesto and on the salads at Bonefish. So I guess the point of my post is to say that people with allergies really need to be careful when they are at restaurants, and should avoid any food that my contain anything that could possibly cause them to have a reaction. I have had many severe reactions and generally they have happened while eating out at a restaurant.
     
  13. hberg

    hberg give me some of your tots

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2003
    Messages:
    1,265
    Likes Received:
    12
    I agree. Then again, I don't have food allergies. Also (and I mean no offense to the initial poster) this is their side of the story. I am not sure any owner would assure 100% nut free especially in a nut encrusted app.
     
  14. beach4

    beach4 New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2010
    Messages:
    65
    Likes Received:
    0
    I am sorry the OP had an experience that prompted him/her to bash Ashburn's finest eating establishment on this forum. There wouldn't be any food to serve if the owner had to cater to every allergy. No offense to the OP, but if it were me with the nut allergy I would avoid any dishes with any nuts. period.

    And I'm curious -- if the reaction could be so severe, why not carry an epipen? Again, I don't have a nut allergy, but I know people and children that have food allergies and they always have one with them.

    That wine was great, wasn't it?
     
  15. serious 1

    serious 1 New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2013
    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    0
    Your allergy is just that....YOUR allergy, you can tell the server or anyone else, but if you get an allergic reaction, it's still YOURS and is no way any else's responsibility. And if you know you have an allergy, why would you not have an epipen with you? Why would you expect someone else to pay for your error? And now you want to place the responsibilty on that establishment? Shame on you! What if you would have eaten at a friends house? You would expect them to pay?? The restaurant business is a tough one and has so many things to be aware of, YOUR allergy should not have to be one of those things! Cook your own food!
     
  16. Mr Rogers

    Mr Rogers Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2006
    Messages:
    862
    Likes Received:
    31
    Sorry for your bad experience. I would not roll the dice and order a nut encrusted anything if I had a single nut allergy.

    Let's say that the restaurant ordered a bag of crushed peanuts to put into their pad thai, and the Manufacturing plant didn't have stringent enough controls and a bit of almond (perhaps your "demon nut")got in there. You would blame the chef/restaurant? I hope not.
     
  17. kmjtt

    kmjtt New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2006
    Messages:
    174
    Likes Received:
    1
    As a mother of a child with multiple food allergies, it is completely my responsibility to ensure his safety. We would never relinquish his safety or health to another person/establishment. My son's list of allergens includes one type of nut. Never in a million years would I order him a "nut crusted" anything. ESPECIALLY without an epipen in my handbag. What on earth are you doing walking around without one in your bag, when you are capable of that severe of a reaction? There are some risks in life worth taking, THAT is not one of them. I am glad you were okay, sounds like it could have had a tragic outcome.
     
  18. KTdid

    KTdid Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2006
    Messages:
    3,271
    Likes Received:
    113
    Seriously? You don't have to be so nasty in your post. Are you angry because you operate a restaurant? "You can choose not to be in the business if you don't know what's in your food."

    I may not have allergies but I expect a restaurant to adhere to the food industry standards for food prep and that includes avoiding chance/cross contamination.

    How many people get food poisoning for improper handling of food but chalk it up to the 24 hr. flu? Or get sick from the sulfites sprayed on the salad bar to keep the produce looking fresh? What the restaurant doesn't tell you can make you sick.

    Food allergies and food intolerance are the same as other diet restrictions restaurants have had to cater to except it requires some additional steps in the preparation.

    The industry is improving and the restaurants that adhere to high standards actually see a substantial increase in sales and profits.

    "One Dish" in Maryland goes as far as using color codes on their menu and uses four separate ovens. This is something the proprietor does because of her own allergy to gluten; certainly not the norm!

    Top Allergens

    Dairy
    Egg
    Peanut
    Tree nuts
    Fish
    Shellfish
    Wheat
    Soy

    http://www.qsrmagazine.com/food-safety/allergy-issue
     
  19. KTdid

    KTdid Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2006
    Messages:
    3,271
    Likes Received:
    113
    The following lists the most allergy-friendly chains through January 2013, as a result of diner feedback on the AllergyEats website and free smartphone app. Ratings are on a scale of 1 (least allergy-friendly) to 5 (most allergy-friendly).

    Large (over 200 units):
    •Red Robin Gourmet Burgers (4.47 rating)
    •P.F. Chang’s China Bistro (4.45 rating)
    •Chipotle Mexican Grill (4.38 rating)
    •Outback Steakhouse (4.34 rating)
    •Longhorn Steakhouse (4.30 rating)

    Medium (50-200 units):
    •Bonefish Grill (4.50 rating)
    •Ninety Nine Restaurant (4.22 rating)
    •Zpizza (4.22 rating)
    •Uno Chicago Grill (4.22 rating)
    •Bertucci’s Brick Oven Restaurant (4.13 rating)

    Small (under 50 units):
    •Burtons Grill (4.88 rating)
    •Maggiano’s Little Italy (4.76 rating)
    •Not Your Average Joe’s (4.73 rating)
    •Legal Sea Foods (4.65 rating)
    •Papa Razzi (4.64 rating)

    The following restaurant chains (of all sizes) were recommended more often than any other, with the highest number of positive ratings and reviews:
    •Red Robin Gourmet Burgers
    •Outback Steakhouse
    •Chipotle Mexican Grill
    •P.F. Chang’s China Bistro
    •Not Your Average Joe’s

    The worst offenders: Asian eateries, ice cream parlors, and bakeries.

    http://www.allergyeats.com/blog/index.php/the-most-allergy-friendly-restaurant-chains-in-america/
     
  20. twohokies

    twohokies New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2007
    Messages:
    404
    Likes Received:
    3
    Even at the most allergy-friendly restaurants, there are still issues. We've had problems at 2 of the ones posted above. Even after over-questioning the servers, my daughter got sick.

    Ironically enough, after posting on this thread, I did not do my own due diligence and poisoned my own daughter the other night. I'm not blaming Costco, only myself. How it should be IMHO. I took the risk.

    My daughter has a gluten allergy. I was excited to see that Costco Sterling now sells french fries. First person I asked for allergen information didn't speak English. After 5 minutes of questioning, a 3rd person finally came out and told me that the french fries were just potatoes and vegetable oil. I had another kid to pick up so I did not ask to see the packaging and took my chances, something I rarely ever do. Lo and behold, I spent from 7pm to 9:30pm with my 5 year-old vomitting her brains out. As I learned today, those french fries have malted barley flour in them........ gluten poison to my daughter and I. It was my mistake and my mistake only. Don't get me wrong, I have talked to Costco about educating their employees and being able to provide better allergy information. But that's it. Lesson learned and we move forward.
     

Share This Page