Traveling with Fructose:
Last summer our family had the opportunity to visit Boston and Mount Desert Island, Maine. It truly was a whirlwind adventure. In 5 days we traveled 2800 miles by air, 570 miles by car and 60 miles on foot. Highlights included walking the Freedom Trail, driving a Duck Boat on the Charles River, walking the hallowed grounds at Harvard, and hiking Cadillic Mountain Trails in Acadia National Park.
On our trip we also ate like kings. In Boston we sampled homemade gelato at Eately and dined at La Famiglia Giorgio’s in Boston’s North End. Jack and Grace loved exploring the cobblestone alleys in this historic neighborhood, and got a kick out of watching the tuxedo clad delivery man supplying fresh baguettes to Giorgio’s.
In Beacon Hill we bellied up to the bar at Cheer’s and enjoyed a “mocktail”. No, we did not see Norm or Cliff, and not “everyone knew our names”.
While in Cambridge we visited Guy Fieri’s top Boston pick, Mr Bartley’s Gourmet Burger, featured on Diners, Drive-ins and Dives. I ordered an “IPhone” burger complete with boursin cheese, grilled mushrooms and onions-completely indulgent and 100% worth it.
Our first morning in Maine we hiked along a wooded path with a peak-a-boo view of the Atlantic to the most charming quintessential New England town, Northeast Harbor, for fresh donuts at Colonel’s. Later, that same day, after another long hike we enjoyed fresh clam chowder at the Terrace Grill at the Bar Harbor Inn. Our 60 miles on foot definitely helped us balance all of our indulgences.
We were in Maine for a friend’s wedding. Did you know there is a suggested attire for a groom’s dinner called “Lobster Casual”? Jeff and I were at a complete loss when we received this invitation. Neither of us had ever indulged in a traditional lobster bake and had no idea what to wear. After much debate and inquiry we honed in on a prep school look with a hint of mountain man: Vineyard Vines sundress, men’s pastel dress shirt, a Patagonia fleece, Sperry’s, and of course a plastic bib. It was a magical evening under a tent devouring lobster with the sun setting on sailboats moored in the harbor.
When I was first diagnosed with Fructose Malabsorption traveling made me anxious. How was I going to find safe food? What if I felt sick on my trip? How does anyone with a food intolerance travel?
As you can see based on our latest adventure I am not an anxious traveler any more. I actually love to travel and especially love planning a trip. After my kids go to sleep and the house is quiet I spend time exploring the internet, creating a Pinterest page, and using shows like Diners, Drive-ins and Dives to find local haunts that use fresh ingredients. After all, a huge part of visiting a new city is to sample the local cuisine.
My daughter, Grace, loves to help me plan our trips. When we landed in Boston she wasn’t anxious or nervous about her Fructose Malabsorption. She was bouncing around ready to embrace all things New England. We have actually discovered that our diagnoses makes us more adventurous eaters. We revel in sampling new foods and exposing our taste buds to new flavors. We find immense satisfaction in not just finding safe foods, but discovering local chefs who share their passion for using real, fresh ingredients.
We plan to take our kids on more adventures in the upcoming years. Jack and Grace would love to visit San Francisco, San Diego, Portland, Seattle, Austin, New York and Miami. If you have traveled to any of these cities or live there please share your favorite local restaurants with us.