Unfortunately, in recent years I have become lactose intolerant. I didn’t realise that it’s something that can develop as you get older and in my case, this is exactly what happened. I first started to realise that there was a problem in my second year of university when I was under a lot of stress and it felt like every meal that I was eating made me feel poorly. I started to get really down about it and after a while, I realised all the food that was making me sick contained dairy and a trip to the doctors confirmed my worries.
I am a big fan of Italian food and one of my favourite meals has always been pizza. Then all of a sudden, one day, I couldn’t eat it anymore. Or at least not in a restaurant where it would be covered in cheese and it’s been pretty frustrating. But I recently found out that Zizzi’s offer an allergen menu and hearing this was honestly one of the best pieces of news ever. If you have any allergy or intolerance, you’ll completely understand where I’m coming from.
Obviously with their allergen menu, Zizzi’s caters for those that are gluten intolerant, lactose intolerant and vegans. It doesn’t just list the ingredients in each meal like a lot of restaurants but it is an actual menu for people with intolerances. I thought this was such a genius idea and is a great way of creating a customer base that are much more likely to come back to you because you always offer something they are able to eat.
As I had been craving pizza lately, I ended up ordering a pizza with mushrooms, peppers and balsamic onions. Although it was a pizza and I was totally expecting cheese, this lactose free substitute wasn’t really like anything I expected. The cheese had quite a liquidy texture and tasted more like the Tesco lactose free sour cream than the usual dairy equivalent. However, it tasted nice all the same although it’s not as good as regular cheese – dammit!
And of course, I had to order dessert because ice cream is another thing that I’ve been dearly missing. I ordered a Nectarini, which was two halves of a nectarine filled with coconut and mango swirl gelato and fresh mint. Lactose free or not, this is one of most delicious desserts I’ve ever ordered, hands down. It was refreshing and full of flavour and I can’t wait to order it again.
I love that Zizzi’s has introduced an allergen menu. Sadly, there are lots of people out there in a similar position as me who are missing out on some of their favourite foods due to a food intolerance. This is such a fantastic idea and I really hope other popular restaurants follow suit.