An Oasis in NWI
It is called the “Chipolte of the Middle East” (Yes, this is what the owner calls it). It is quick, fresh, and gluten free. It is Mirage Grill, located in Merrillville right on US 30 in front of the Salvation Army Thrift Store.
When I walked in, I was greeted by a very nice man (the owner). He asked if I had ever been there before and took the time to explain the menu and what the different sauces were and what they contained. When I was ready to order, his next question was if I had a g food allergies. Yep! Wheat.
He said that was not a problem and that I was free to eat anything but the pita and Freekeh. I did question the process about the meat as I saw it cooking in the back. I was informed that the meat is seasoned with special seasonings and natural juices and no wheat is added. He believes in natural flavors.
Ok! Here we go! Get the chicken shawarma bowl. It is delicious. But for those on a gluten sensitive diet, you have to get the rice and not the Freekeh since it is made from barley and wheat. The chicken was so flavorful and tender. I tried the garlic mayo. Not too garlic-ie (yes, that is a new word and I have notified Webster) and was loaded with flavor. The chili sauce was even delightful that they put on top.
I talked to the manager pretty extensively about a gluten free menu. He said that they are working on one. The meats and sauces are all gluten free. He wants to educate the staff about what gluten is and how to be careful of cross contamination. Mirage Grill is also looking into gluten free pita breads so is gluten free folk can enjoy a nice sandwich.
The side salads and hummus are also delicious. It is honestly the best hummus that I have ever had. Very full of flavor and the oil and spice add just enough to add extra flavor. Yes, hummus is suppose to be eaten with pita bread. HOWEVER, Mirage Grill sells individual bags of Tostitos Scoops.
The Mirage Grill
Don’t leave without having dessert! They gave me a sample of their different gelato flavors. My personal favorite is the Thai Vanilla. Not a clue what is in it (but it is wheat free!), but it is awesome.