Chris Adler was inspired to create the allergen-free menu by his wife, who has suffered from severe food allergies her entire life. Building a restaurant that could accommodate her needs and the needs of other food allergy sufferers was a large priority in his vision for the restaurant. McCormack’s Big Whisky Grill features a unique two-kitchen system, allowing the restaurant the ability to safely serve these tasty allergen-free meals to patrons with any and all food allergies or dietary restrictions (GF, V, VO).
The new menu will feature items without common food allergens, such as nuts, shellfish, seeds, red meat, and gluten to mention a few items omitted from this special allergen-free menu. Many dishes will also be dairy free and egg free. Menu items include the chef’s creative and inspired new interpretations of sea bass, roasted chicken, spaghetti squash, and roasted cauliflower. This new menu will be available daily, and on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, patrons who are concerned with cross-contamination will have all meals prepared separately in the allergen-free second kitchen.
“One of the most important details for me, outside of the incredible whisky collection, is the idea of two kitchens, with one sterilized to serve specialized diet and allergy needs,” offers Chris Adler. “My wife and a few relatives have suffered from severe food allergies for their entire lives and have never been able to comfortably dine out — and they are not alone. I'm driven to create a safe environment for any dietary concern, choice or not. The allergen-free menu is available all week, but we sanitize and staff the second kitchen separately on Tuesdays and Wednesdays for those with any cross-contamination concerns.”
Adler adds, “We're able to accommodate every major food allergy concern and/or diet preference. Lots of veggie and vegan stuff as well as I'm now 20+ years meat-free. Richmond’s own Phillip Denny (one of the area’s top chefs) has come up with some amazing dish options and we're all hopeful to help serve a very under-served group and I'll probably see you there.”
McCormack’s Big Whisky Grill holds up to 600 people and offers a selection of over 2000 spirits – 700-bottle whiskey selection, 150 craft beers and a 200-bottle wine selection. Adler and McCormack are also working with Henrico County health officials to offer a high-end Cigar room within the 11,000 sq. ft. footprint of the restaurant.