What gluten? An Italian chain topped the list.

Credit: Courtesy of William Brinson

For many diners, choosing a restaurant isn’t just about deciding between Italian or sushi, but also encompasses questions like does the kitchen cook with peanuts and are any of the pastas gluten-free? Looking to help with the latter is the site AllergyEats, billed as the leading guiding to allergy-friendly restaurants nationwide—a kind of “Yelp for allergy-friendliness ratings” that allows users to rate and post feedback on eateries. The site has just released its annual list of the top ten most allergy-friendly restaurant chains in America, directly sourced from its user data.

“For the over 15 million Americans with food allergies, it’s incredibly important to know which restaurants are the best at creating allergy-friendly experiences so these individuals can more comfortably dine out,” Paul Antico, AllergyEats’ founder and CEO, said in a statement. “The restaurant chains on our 2018 list have differentiated themselves with exceptional food allergy protocols, education, and training, according to peer reviews from AllergyEats users. Even better, this year’s list includes chains that offer diverse types of cuisine—from Italian and Mexican to steaks, seafood, and more.”

For the ten restaurant list, AllergyEats broke the information down into two groups of five: one featuring large chains of 50 or more restaurants and one featuring smaller chains with fewer than 50 locations. Of the big boys, Maggiano’s Little Italy topped the charts with an impressive, 4.76 out of 5 rating. Chipotle Mexican Grill was a relatively distant second with a rating of 4.45, followed by Betucci’s Italian Restaurant, pizza specialist Mellow Mushroom, and Longhorn Steakhouse.

For smaller chains, the East Coast-based Burtons Grill took top honors with an extremely high 4.83 rating, followed by the Northeast’s Flatbread Company with a 4.77 rating. The Boston-based Legal Sea Foods, the Midwest’s Weber Grill, and the Massachusetts-based 110 Grill rounded out that list of five. Read more about this year's top ten list on the AllegyEats blog.