We are going on our 2nd cruise in a couple of weeks. One issue we had on our first cruise was that we really don't care for "gourmet" food. We really are meat and potatoes types and don't care for all the unusual food combinations they served on the ship. Nothing wrong with that, everyone just has different tastes and part of the enjoyment of the cruise is food choices that are enjoyable for you. We had our kids with us last time, so we spent a lot of time eating in the informal restaurants. This time we are going by ourselves and we want to enjoy the formal atmosphere of the main dining rooms.
We had been assured that we could order items alacarte like just a steak or some lobster, but the couple of times we tried to do that, we were told that we had to go to the steakhouse ($$$) to get a steak, and that they only served lobster on certain nights, so we were quite disappointed with that. So instead, we made do with the menu choices and I actually ended up getting sick the last couple of days of the cruise, I believe from some half-raw quail eggs that were in a soup.
Maybe that's just an NCL thing, so we're hoping to have a better experience with Carnival. I have to say, we didn't care much for the Freestyle set up, so that was a big factor in the choice to switch to Carnival.
Carnival has alternate menu items available in the dining room every night. Steak, Burger, and sometimes BBQ Ribs. Lobster is normally served only on formal night. Don't hesitate to order two entre items if you see more than one thing you might like. Certainly don't eat anything you don't like. The dining staff wants you to enjoy your food. They will be glad to take it back and bring something else.
Whatever else you do try the chocolate melting cake.
Sorry for the delay in responding, but we literally just got back home last night! I was delightfully surprised by the menu on the ship. It was very nice and not as "gourmet" as the food on Norweigan was. I think I only resorted to the "alternative" menu maybe twice.
I think what I don't like about "gourmet" food are the unusual combinations - raspberry walnut viniagrette for example, or chipotle lime mayo, things like that. There really wasn't a lot of that on the menu and that was a big relief to me. And I like the traditional seating much better than the Freestyle concept. We had a very nice table and everyone showed up for dinner every night and stayed there talking and eating for about two hours. Much nicer!
PS: On your recommendation, I tried the Chocolate Melting Cake - oh my gosh! I don't think I've ever had something so delicious!
"And I like the traditional seating much better than the Freestyle concept. We had a very nice table and everyone showed up for dinner every night and stayed there talking and eating for about two hours. Much nicer! "
Now you're talkin!! You are now a veteran cruiser!
Landlocked in Denver, but cruisin every chance we get.
Polynesia, Carib. '86
Cr. Odyssey, Scandinavia, '91, 30 Day S Pac. 2002
Crystal Harm, Aust., N.Z., '94
Royal Odyssey, AK,'96
Old Cr. Pr. Canal, '97
RCCL, Carib, 1998
Volendam, Car, 2000
Ryndam, 35 day S. Am., Antarctica, '03
Is. Pr., Canal, 2004
Statendam, 34 day China, Japan, AK '06
Cr.Pr., Carib. 08
Eurodam, Atlantic, Med. '10
To echo Mehawk...... on RCI we had a tablemate who was a "meat and potatoes" guy and he was able to order steak every night. There was always some kind of potato dish on the menu so he was a happy camper.