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A Year of Gluten-Free Travel Friends in NYC

I did not travel as much as I would have liked in 2022, but I did connect with many gluten-free travelers and friends who were busy visiting New York City this past year. I figured this would put a fun spin on my Gluten-Free Globetrotter year in review. My favorite part of the celiac community has always been to connect with others living with celiac disease from around the world in real life. IRL > DMs!

Connecting with other Gluten-Free Globetrotters who have NYC on their travel itineraries is an awesome way for me to not only meet new friends, but to live vicariously through others’ travel experiences. We meet up in person, eat gluten-free food, and then we talk about travel. Sounds like a win/win to me! I am also flattered and honored to finally meet people that I admire and consider friends even if we have never met in person yet. Another perk of living in NYC is having so many wonderful gluten-free locals to connect with over gluten-free foods. The community is really an unexpected “bonus” of having celiac disease.

Here is a rundown of the gluten-free friends I connected with in 2022. (I hope I didn’t forget anyone!)

Christina from Gluten Free Living BK

Gluten-Free Globetrotter Erin Smith with Christina from Gluten Free Living BK in Brooklyn
Me and Christina from Gluten Free Living BK
in Greenpoint, Brooklyn

Christina and I both live in Brooklyn and often eat at the same gluten-free places but never met in real life. We finally met up in April when she was in my neighborhood for Easter. This year, I followed Christina’s travels to both Costa Rica and Alaska via her Instagram. I also drooled over many of her delicious food photos. We reconnected over some awesome gluten-free food at Modern Bread later in the year.

Find Christina on Instagram @glutenfreelivingbk

Matt & Alysha from Wheatless Wanderlust

Gluten-Free Globetrotter Erin Smith with Matt from Wheatless Wanderlust
Me with Matt from Wheatless Wanderlust on the waterfront in Brooklyn (Alysha took the photo!)

Matt and Alysha are world travelers who write really awesome travel guides along the way. Matt has Celiac disease, so he is always seeking out the best gluten-free eats in every city he goes. They were supposed to kick off a massive round-the-world trip right before the pandemic but plans changed so they started visiting national parks and their photos were gorgeous! They recently relocated to Portland, one of the best cities for gluten-free food in the country. Matt is also a coffee aficionado, so we met up for a coffee at Devoción in Williamsburg, Brooklyn while he was in New York City. Definitely visit their website for some really detailed travel guides.

Visit Wheatless Wanderlust at

Matt from Gluten Free Street Gang

Matt from Gluten Free Street Gang with Gluten-Free Globetrotter Erin Smith
Matt and I smiling in Manhattan after a few gluten-free cocktails

Not gonna lie, meeting Matt from Gluten Free Street Gang was a total fan girl moment. Matt has one of the funniest gluten-free meme accounts on the internet and I have been a fan of his for a long time. Matt currently lives in London and has wonderful travel posts from across Europe and the world. We met up for drinks in NYC and talked for a few hours. He is so down-to-earth and we’ve been keeping in touch via zoom catch-ups which has been great.

Find Matt on Instagram @glutenfreestreetgang and visit his swag shop here.

Ashley from Celiac and the 6ix

Gluten-Free Globetrotter Erin Smith with Lindsey from The Gluten Free Travelers and Ashley from Celiac and the 6ix
Erin, Lindsey from The Gluten Free Travelers, and Ashley from Celiac and the 6ix outside of Union Square Rosa Mexicano in Manhattan

I feel like I have known Ashley for YEARS yet we only met for the first time this summer. I cannot even remember when we first connected via Instagram but it was at least four years ago. Ashley live in Canada, travels all over the world, and visited NYC this summer. I think she visited more gluten-free restaurants in Manhattan than I have been to. Seriously, Ashley ate at all of the gluten-free hot spots during her trip. We met up for tacos and margaritas with Lindsey from The Gluten Free Travelers to talk all things gluten-free travel and mom life. I can’t wait to see Ashley in Toronto one day.

Find Ashley on Instagram @celiacandthe6ix

Kris from Gluten-Free with 3

Kris from Gluten Free with 3 and I in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware!

This is one of the cooler meet-ups of 2022 and I am so happy we actually pulled this off. Kris and I have been Instagram friends for a few years. We messaged throughout the pandemic and though we live about 20 miles from each other in New York, we never met in person.

By chance, I saw her gluten-free daughter’s Instagram post about an upcoming trip to Rehoboth Beach, Delaware. Long story short, we were in the same place at the same time for vacation! We met up on the Rehoboth boardwalk and she met my whole family. Such a fun encounter!

Fun fact: Three of Kris’s four kids have celiac disease!

Find Kris @glutenfreewith3

Matt from Glass of Weinstein

Me with Matt from Glass of Weinstein

This is the third of the three gluten-free Matts that I met this year which I found quite amusing. Technically, Matt wasn’t visiting New York but he did travel “all the way down” from Washington Heights to Chelsea which can be quite the trek for a local. ha! We met up for bagels at Modern Bread and could probably have sat chatting all day long. Matt is always cooking up something delicious in his NYC kitchen, usually with Bob’s Red Mill along for the ride.

Find Matt @glassofweinstein and find his recipes on his website.

Lindsey from The Gluten Free Travelers

Lindsey, Orly Gottesman of Blends by Orly and Modern Bread owner, and me at the Modern Bread Chelsea Grand Opening Party

Lindsey is a gluten-free travel blogger living in New York City and we have been friends for years. I have always loved following Lindsey’s travels through her photos and have given each other travel tips over the years. We even ran into each other randomly at a restaurant in California one time. Talk about a small gluten-free world! Lindsey was my “plus one” at the grand opening party of the second location of Modern Bread and Bagel in NYC.

Find Lindsey @theglutenfreetravelers

Amy from Amy the Family Chef

Ok, so this was far from our first meeting but it is always great to catch up with Amy while she is on the east coast. Amy and I first connected at a gluten-free event in New Jersey in 2014 and then again at a Gluten-Free Food Allergy Fest in Texas in 2015. We immediately hit it off and have kept in touch ever since.

Find Amy at @amythefamilychef and visit her blog full of gluten-free recipes here.

Allie from Go See Gluten-Free

Allie and I freezing in lower Manhattan

Allie and I first met back in 2017 at a celiac fundraiser while I was living in California. I was beyond flattered when she reached out to me, saying I was one of the first gluten-free travelers she discovered on Instagram. Allie has traveled the world and has had some really amazing travel experiences. She is busy becoming a doctor, so she doesn’t post much on Instagram anymore. I have now connected with Allie multiple times on both coasts, sharing gluten-free treats along the way.

I think Modern Bread and Bagel needs it’s own special shout out in this post. Four of the meet ups above were at Modern while enjoying gluten-free bagels including their grand opening party. I am beyond thankful that they opened a second New York City location which is much easier for me to get to from Brooklyn. Plus, it’s just so damn good! This will forever be my suggested meet up space in Manhattan!

Modern Bread & Bagel: 139 W 14th St, New York, NY 10011

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