All About Joe’s

The news across the U.S. seems to be all about guys named Joe these days. Average Joes, Joe Six-Packs, and — of course — Joe the Plumber are dominating headlines, thanks to the imminent presidential election. I know I’m contributing to Joe-overload by writing this, but I wanted to share a new discovery: Not Your Average Joe’s.

A few months ago, I mentioned visiting my brother-in-law and his family in San Diego and the great gluten-free restaurants he found for me there. The family has since moved to Acton, Massachusetts, and for my first visit there, my brother-in-law went through the research process again. The city of Boston has many options for gluten-free dining, but Acton, a town roughly 21 miles west-northwest of Boston, is a quieter spot. Fortunately Not Your Average Joe’s Creative Casual Cuisine has an outpost there.

The restaurant is part of a chain that has 15 locations in Massachusetts, in towns such as Needham, Watertown, and Hyannis. There is also a location in Leesburg, Virginia (two other locations are slated to open in Virginia in the next few months). Not Your Average Joe’s has a lengthy regular menu that includes pizzas and pastas. However, for celiacs, it offers a short gluten-free menu that features salads (Cobb salad, grilled chicken salad), fish and seafood dishes (grilled salmon, rosemary-skewered scallops), meat and poultry dishes (flank steak with garlic mashed potatoes, grilled chicken breast), and a bun-free burger. The options are limited, but the food is good and the service is thoughtful. Everything on the menu is available for takeout.

The restaurant is also very much a child-friendly zone. Not Your Average Joe’s offers a separate menu for children (with a couple of gluten-free options), crayons to decorate placemats, and high chairs for the littlest diners. It was a hit with my three nieces, so we’ll be back soon.

Not Your Average Joe’s [web]; 15 locations in Massachusetts and one in Virginia, including:

Acton: [address] 305 Main Street, Acton, MA [tel] 978-635-0101

Hyannis: [address] 793 Iyannough Road, Hyannis, MA [tel] 508-778-1424

Leesburg: [address] Lansdowne Town Center, 19307 Promenade Drive, Leesburg, VA [tel] 571-333-5637

Needham: [address] 109 Chapel Street, Needham, MA [tel] 781-453-9300

Watertown: [address] 55 Main Street, Watertown, MA [tel] 617-926-9229