Published On: Tue, Sep 6th, 2016

Cafe forces customers to ‘prove they’re coeliac’ before ordering gluten-free food

A Dublin-based café owner has come under fire for telling customers who order gluten-free food they need to bring a doctor’s note – otherwise he won’t serve them.

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Irish cafe owner Paul Stenson has incurred the wrath of gluten-sensitive folk with his comments.

This is not the first time the outspoken café owner at The White Moose Café has caused a social media storm, as earlier this year he threatened to give crying babies valium to make them be quiet. He also barred all vegans from his café for posting reviews, and posted CCTV footage of a woman who wrote a negative review on their Facebook page.

This latest statement, which was posted on ‘The White Moose Café’ Facebook page, came about after a woman asked for gluten-free pancakes but didn’t know what coeliac disease was.

“Guests following a gluten-free fad, who don’t even know what gluten is, can cop the fuck on and eat regular food like everybody else,” wrote the owner, Paul Stenson.

Unsurprisingly, the controversial post has garnered international attention, with 27,000 reactions and more than 4,000 shares. Many people commented, with some branding Stenson as “ignorant” and “stupid”.

The furore began when Stenson penned a Facebook post stating that customers who wanted to order gluten-free food would be required to bring a doctor’s note.

It read:


The post received a mixed response but, predominantly, people were outraged.

One person wrote: “How bloody ignorant of you. Gluten affects a lot more people than celiacs [sic]. I have Hashimotos which even most doctors don’t know how to treat, so I end up having to treat myself, which includes an elimination diet that shows gluten makes me feel like I’ve taken sleeping tablets. Glad restaurants in Australia aren’t this stupid.”

Another person wrote: “The stupidest thing I’ve seen on the internet all week. Bravo, shit cafe.”

However, one commenter wrote: “I’m coeliac and was in the other morning,. Your waiter was really nice, sorted me out with gluten-free toast and I had a really good breakfast. Will be back!”

Paulie later penned a second – and even more outrageous – post, addressing people with coeliac disease who had commented on his prior status.

“Dear Coeliacs. Quite a number of you are saying that yesterday’s post ‘must be a joke’ and that I couldn’t possibly be serious about asking people for doctor’s notes. Let me assure you that it was not a joke and I am deadly serious. Just as serious as I was when I said I’d charge a corkage fee for breastfeeding mothers, or when I threatened to give Valium to screaming babies, or even when I promised to shoot vegans dead at point blank range. In case you haven’t noticed, all posts on this page are deadly serious and it is imperative that you take them literally. So, whether you’re a genuine coeliac or you simply suffer from the psychological disorder known as gluten intolerance AKA lets-make-it-up-as-we-go-along syndrome, please remember that I’d never joke on this page. Never ever.”

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