An interesting thread...
A couple of points:
Berlitz isn't necessarily the "bible;" I think Stern's is much better. Berlitz suffers from the same problem as Consumer Reports; they normalize to cost; i.e., instead of comparing one item to another, they put a value on what you "should" get for the cost.
Kuki, time for you to go back on Regent. I, have found a few folks I never want to see again but all in all a wonderful group of passengers. Food and service are fantastic!
Supply vs demand is a very valid argument when it comes to pricing of specialty restaurants. No way can 3000 pax all go to specialty restaurants in a week. I think prices will continue to rise to equate supply with demand. Although I have never sailed them, I like the NCL model of multiple restaurants with different fees.