National restaurant brand Sushi Samba, known for its unique blend of Japanese, Brazilian and Peruvian cuisine, has launched a gluten-free menu to cater to the growing gluten-free community. Meredith Boyle, Samba Brand Management’s culinary manager, told The Daily Meal that the menu was crafted after receiving guest feedback requesting gluten-free dishes across many of their varied locations including Miami, New York, Chicago and Vegas.
The menu makes smart choices by switching some of the sauces that normally contain gluten to gluten-free versions instead. “We definitely have an advantage with sushi being on the menu,” said Boyle. “People can forget that rice is part of a gluten-free diet and soy is an ingredient that is easy to take out, which is why we use tamari instead. We’ve updated our sauces just slightly.”
Sushi Samba showcases most of their regular menu items in a modified format on the new gluten-free menu. For small plates, gluten-free guests can choose from chicarron calamari with tomato, mint, plantain and tamarind to tuna takai with white asparagus, fresh heart of palm, avocado and tatsoi. The yellowtail taquitos on the regular menu were also revamped to become yellowtail lettuce wraps with shiso, avocado, aji panca, roasted corn miso, and lime.
As for their signature seviches and tiraditos, some classic dishes like jumbo shrimp with passion fruit, cucumber and cilantro as well as tuna with green apple, cilantro and lime are available. For large plates, Boyle highly recommends the moqueca mista, a classic Samba dish that was slightly updated to form a gluten-free version. It’s filled with shrimp, squid, sea bass, crayfish, coconut milk, roasted cashew, dende oil and chimichurri rice.
Guests can request the gluten-free menu when dining at Sushi Samba. As for the restaurant tackling cross-contamination issues, Boyle explained that currently it has launched the new menu and updated their current recipes. Next, they will look to have separate fryers to eliminate even the slightest amount of cross contamination. The restaurant’s gluten-free process is labeled clearly on the menu.
“I think when you begin to open yourself up to accommodating guests for other dietary restrictions, you can look at your menu in a different way,” added Boyle, who noted Samba will be tackling creating a vegan menu next to accommodate diners.