SS Norway (12 times) '85 - '97; Radiance OS 06/01; Island Princess 11/04, Grand Princess 11/04/05, Golden Princess 7/21/06, Golden Princess 2/24/07, Explorer of the Seas 12/23/07, Island Princess 11/15/08
Having just dined in both last week I will tell you that on FREEDOM Portofino was the better of the two. They also offered the best filet - much more flavorful & cooked to perfection. The Skewer of seafood was delicious - I requested that the salmon be left off & they gave me an extra shrimp in its place. We ate here 3 nights so between us 4 adults we tried almost everything on the menu - not a bad dish to be had. The tiger shrimp appetizer was terrific. They also gave us an appetizer size of pasta in addition to our regular appetizers. Wonderful meal & service all 3 nights - and at $20 per person a true value. Chops was just Ok - only ate there once - the filet was not as good as Portofinos. Veal chop just so-so.
We will be cruising May 20th on The Mariner, would these menus be the same? We have read that Chops was a place "not" to be missed, so we are going to try it. Thanks for putiing them out there, yummy!!!!
Both restaurants are very good, but I agree that Portofino's is the better of the two. And this is coming from someone who never even wanted to try Portofino's. On our last cruise, we dined in Chops one night and Portofinos two nights. If you can do it, try them both. Make your reservations as soon as possible after you board so that you are not disappointed. If you ask for the first dining time (6 p.m.) you have a better chance of getting a table by the window if you ask for it.
Mary Lou Scanlon
NCL Pride of America April 24, 2010
NCL Epic February 12, 2011
RCCL Allure of the Seas - September 18, 2011
Celebrity Eclipse - February 11, 2012:
RCCL Navigator OTS - February 9, 2013
I should say that we dine in NYC often & that we go to some of the best steakhouses (Keans, Sparks, Lugers) so maybe for us it is not fair to compare Chops to those - however we also dine in THE BEST italian restauraunts & Portifinos would stand up to any of them. Chops was average - but I guess that all depends on where your "bar" starts.