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Gluten-Free Dining Event at Max’s Tavern Features Local & Regional Vendors

Posted Aug 21 2009 12:34pm

Blueberry Martinis with Cold River Blueberry Vodka


Blueberries took center stage at Max’s Tavern’s first gluten-free dinner event held on Tuesday, August 11th, 2009.    This favorite summertime fruit found its way into both the featured martinis as well as the decadent dessert that topped off the evening’s superb five-course meal.


During the cocktail hour, attendees indulged in gluten-free martinis made with Cold River Blueberry Vodka from the state of Maine.  Cold River Vodka, a 100% Maine potato vodka rated 1# in the world by The Wine Enthusiast, is produced at Maine Distilleries, LLC, in Freeport.  Described by The Spirit Journal and WineEnthusiast Magazine as having an “enticing bouquet”, this vodka has a slight sweetness and a smoother finish than other grain-based vodkas.    Shaken up with ice and some blueberry juice, the martinis at this event gave off a wonderful aroma that filled the room throughout the evening.  


We adorned our martinis with fresh blueberries from Randall’s Farm & Greenhouse located in Ludlow, Massachusetts.  In addition to their fresh produce selection, Randall’s boasts an impressive gluten-free section in their grocery store.  I spoke at length to owner, Karen Randall, about the gluten-free offerings in her family-owned business, and I was thrilled to learn that she holds periodic celiac support events at the farm.   Randall’s Farm & Greenhouse has become a great resource for the Greater Springfield celiac community because they are well stocked, well informed, and they care about their customers.

Beltane’s Farm Peach Cobbler with Cold River Vodka Blueberry Sauce and Pear Semifreddo


And what can I say about the five course meal that was carefully planned and prepared by Executive Chef Puka?  The Chef cleverly combined fresh local ingredients with some less known additions like black garlic, King Trumpet mushrooms, and Skate Wing.  Favorites for me at the event included the Asparagus “fettuccini”, Pan Seared Skate Wing with Asian Pear Risotto, and Beltane’s Farm Peach Cobbler prepared with Cold River Vodka Blueberry Sauce and Pear Semifreddo.

Max’s first gluten-free dining event was a great success not only because of the outstanding food and drink that was served, but also because it brought together celiac families and friends for a special evening out on the town.   We all felt very grateful that such a beautiful event with artistically prepared food was inclusive of our dietary needs. 

Thank you to Max’s Tavern for taking the lead with gluten-free dining in Western Massachusetts.  We hope there will be more events like this one in the near future!

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