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cruzgryphon

Quality of food on Royal Caribbean

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RCI is a mass market line. The food they serve is no better than banquet food or food that you would find in low end chain restaurants such as Applebees, Outback, Red Lobster, Chili's, etc... If you think those restaurants are delicious you will be fine with RCI's food.

 

Outback may be considered "low end" but they absolutely smoke the MDR of both mass market lines I cruise. In fact, my last experience with an Outback steak was much better than my last experience at Chops. Cruise ship food can no longer even compare to most land based chain places in my opinion. Pretty sad

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Previously we might have agreed with your comparison. This past week of our most dinners in the main dining room on Oasis were, unfortunately, well below that served at Applebees, Outback, Red Lobster, Chili's, etc. Big step down from our previous cruises.

 

Thats pretty sad :(

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Thats pretty sad :(

I was sad to experience it and I am sad now to report it. Really it was so bad that I hope last week was at least partially a fluke. Certainly our wait staff was below par and were responsible for many of the issues. Other issues were ingrediate related (unripened tomatoes in August for example) or prep (drastically overcooked fish for example).

 

Our next Oasis cruise is already past final payment; I hope service and food are better. Coastal Kitchen access may help, but as we are in a JS, we do not know how many nights we will dine there. Likely we will be venturing into the MDR again to see if the quality rebounded at all.

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I honestly don't want to sound like I'm picking on you here, I'm really not, but if RCCL just doesn't measure up to people's likings anymore and food is certainly a big part of the cruising experience - why do they continue to keep coming back to the same "product" that they don't like? Just wondering?

 

 

 

Because I have three young kids. If it were not for them and the royal kids program we’d be long gone.

 

 

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Indi this year was better. They had the head of food and bev on the ship from Miami. I'm guessing to deal with the problems with the food and complaints

 

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I thought the food was good when we were on Allure with the exception of the buffet...that was pure and simply disgusting.

 

 

 

We haven’t eaten in the MDR in a few years now because the specialty restaurants were simply better. What sucks now is our last trip on the Allure is the first time we’ve walked away from the specialty restaurants thinking they were disappointing too.

 

The WJ on Allure is pure garbage. It’s hard to think you can walk around all of that food and not find a damn thing worth eating, but it sure happens.

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We haven’t eaten in the MDR in a few years now because the specialty restaurants were simply better. What sucks now is our last trip on the Allure is the first time we’ve walked away from the specialty restaurants thinking they were disappointing too.

 

The WJ on Allure is pure garbage. It’s hard to think you can walk around all of that food and not find a damn thing worth eating, but it sure happens.

 

Maybe it's just you...

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I live in NYC so have had the fortunate opportunity to dine at many Michelin starred restaurants. While obviously the MDR is not comparable, when people compare the quality to below Applebees, Red Lobster, etc that is a far stretch.

 

The food on my recent cruises on the Symphony and Adventure was pretty good and I would compare it favorably to what is served on land at similar price point.

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Just recently got off Allure. We had a party of 8, with many different likes and dislikes. I have to say that we all thought the food in the MDR was very good. Only one time did someone not like something and it was because she didn't realize it was spicy. After telling our waiter it was too spicy, our waiter was happy to bring her something else. After reading so many bad reviews of the food, I was a little worried about the quality. We all felt the quality and wait staff were great!

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Maybe it's just you...

 

It is not just him. It is a lot of us. Most of the food is good, nothing is great and some items are just bad.

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We haven’t eaten in the MDR in a few years now because the specialty restaurants were simply better. What sucks now is our last trip on the Allure is the first time we’ve walked away from the specialty restaurants thinking they were disappointing too.

 

The WJ on Allure is pure garbage. It’s hard to think you can walk around all of that food and not find a damn thing worth eating, but it sure happens.

 

agreed, the quality in both the free and pay to eat venues (which are getting quite pricey at nearly $50 pp) are declining where the free one are terrible and the paid ones are not that good (as in needing to send items back)

 

Maybe it's just you...

doubtful, seems to be a recurring theme and sentiment that has been growing particularly quickly the last year or so. All the dining options are slipping quite noticeably especially in relation to other "cheaper" cruiselines

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I live in NYC so have had the fortunate opportunity to dine at many Michelin starred restaurants. While obviously the MDR is not comparable, when people compare the quality to below Applebees, Red Lobster, etc that is a far stretch.

 

The food on my recent cruises on the Symphony and Adventure was pretty good and I would compare it favorably to what is served on land at similar price point.

 

the paid restaurants on Allure and recently harmony is not even upto the levels of Red Lobster or Applebees and the MDR/windjammer is equivalent to a food court in a strip mall qualitywise.

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the paid restaurants on Allure and recently harmony is not even upto the levels of Red Lobster or Applebees and the MDR/windjammer is equivalent to a food court in a strip mall qualitywise.

Wow... Really?! :rolleyes:

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We haven’t eaten in the MDR in a few years now because the specialty restaurants were simply better. What sucks now is our last trip on the Allure is the first time we’ve walked away from the specialty restaurants thinking they were disappointing too.

 

The WJ on Allure is pure garbage. It’s hard to think you can walk around all of that food and not find a damn thing worth eating, but it sure happens.

So what did you eat all week .. snacks from the store??

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What makes the service more rushed at dinner at the MDR is the fact that with the introduction of the new Menus you need to place your dessert order when ordering your starter and main courses. This process doesn't really save more time for the waiter and is just a little detail that would improve the overal experience or have kept it at past standards

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My DH and I aren’t buffet people at home, and tend to not enjoy the Windjammer. But, in all fairness, we don’t enjoy any buffet at home. The only foods I’ve been disappointed in, in the MDR, are the escargot (sometimes it is luke warm, which I don’t like), and the lobster (last time we had it, it was chewy and very small)

 

 

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Regarding the Windjammer, talking about lunch it really depends on the ship. On Jewel we had a great experience lately where even for lunch they had a theme section every day, simmilar as for dinner but maybe on a smaller scale but gave you that desperately needed variety which you can't find on a lot of the ships anymore.

 

 

 

Then again on Adventure, absoultely poor choice with luckily a indian dish every lunch and mostly good. There was also a pasta station a couple of times but otherwise that was it.

 

 

 

But yes, burgers and hot dogs are the cheapest options and if the majority od the clientele will eat it without complaining why not serve it and make the ship revenue manager happy... :rolleyes:

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It is not just him. It is a lot of us. Most of the food is good, nothing is great and some items are just bad.

 

The huge buffet at windjammer and "can't find a damn thing worth eating".... If that's true, sorry, it IS YOU.

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I live in NYC so have had the fortunate opportunity to dine at many Michelin starred restaurants. While obviously the MDR is not comparable, when people compare the quality to below Applebees, Red Lobster, etc that is a far stretch.

 

The food on my recent cruises on the Symphony and Adventure was pretty good and I would compare it favorably to what is served on land at similar price point.

 

 

I think the people that make the Applebees comments tend to have no idea what good food is and are just trying to put on an act like they are sophisticated diners. It's a dead giveaway. Quite frankly, some of the food IS worse than Applebees. But that doesn't mean anything. How is that an insult, anyways? These chain restaurants have a ton of processes and investment in their recipes. It should be decent food and it is. They expect banquet style food on a cruise ship serving thousands of guests at the same time to be as hot and fresh as a local restaurant? It's not realistic. The specialty restaurants are very good on the ships and better than MDR because the food is served to you quicker. But anyone who expects the mass market options on a mass market cruise line (buffet, pizza, MDR, etc.) to be better than a local restaurant are simply naive.

 

I have realistic expectations with cruise ship food. Some of it is stellar, some of it not so much. I've been cruising for 20 years and the food is about the same. We are just getting more spoiled. In fact, I think they have improved the variety and options.

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We just did the Brilliance TA for 16 days and were pleasantly surprised with the MDR. We ate there 13 of the 16 nights and thought the food was very good. It arrived hot, was served at a good pace, and none of the selections were dried out and "chewy". While I agree that the menu options have been reduced too much, the quality itself was very good. We also ate at Chops and Giovanni's on day 1 and 2 and enjoyed them also, but didn't think they were worth any extra money over the MDR.

 

We hadn't eaten in the MDR our last two cruises, as we had gotten "used to" the menu and had the option of Coastal Kitchen.

 

We are not Windjammer fans, tried it one night and just don't enjoy it. In fact as we have cruised more and more, we try to avoid it when possible. I know many folks seem to enjoy it, and that great -- its not our choice at all.

 

Going on Allure next month and will give the MDR another try and hope it is as good as the Brilliance was.

 

mac_tlc

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I think the people that make the Applebees comments tend to have no idea what good food is and are just trying to put on an act like they are sophisticated diners. It's a dead giveaway. Quite frankly, some of the food IS worse than Applebees. But that doesn't mean anything. How is that an insult, anyways? These chain restaurants have a ton of processes and investment in their recipes. It should be decent food and it is. They expect banquet style food on a cruise ship serving thousands of guests at the same time to be as hot and fresh as a local restaurant? It's not realistic. The specialty restaurants are very good on the ships and better than MDR because the food is served to you quicker. But anyone who expects the mass market options on a mass market cruise line (buffet, pizza, MDR, etc.) to be better than a local restaurant are simply naive.

 

I have realistic expectations with cruise ship food. Some of it is stellar, some of it not so much. I've been cruising for 20 years and the food is about the same. We are just getting more spoiled. In fact, I think they have improved the variety and options.

Many people (including me) feel that these things used to be better than a local restaurant, but are no longer.

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Many people (including me) feel that these things used to be better than a local restaurant, but are no longer.

 

That's because local restaurants used to suck! Diners ARE getting more sophisticated and there has been a massive rise in the quality of food at restaurants in the last 10 - 15 years. Massive. It's well documented. Tons of competition so restaurants are striving to do better and better. Popular food shows, cooking competitions, restaurant reviews, etc. It's rapidly changing the industry for the better. The food you can get going out to local restaurants is pretty amazing nowadays. But it happened slowly, so you don't really grasp how much better it is. Which also explains the rise of specialty dining on cruise ships to provide a higher end experience than is possible with banquet style delivery in the MDR.

 

Think about local Italian restaurants. They all used to be a scoop of red sauce on pasta with cheese baked on top. I can't even find those older style Italian American restaurants anymore. Now it's wood burning ovens and sophisticated menus. McDonalds - look how much they have changed. From piles of fully assembled burgers getting cold and stale in the warmer to now - patties made fresh the moment you order. From roach coaches of old to modern craft food trucks. The restaurant scene is changing rapidly and even the corporate chains are vastly improving to try and keep up. You simply cannot do with an MDR menu what you can do in a smaller restaurant. It's not possible with the space available and price point cruisers want to pay.

 

It's not a decline in cruise ship MDR/buffet food, it's that you are getting slowly used to better and better dining at home.

Edited by BNBR

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I live in NYC so have had the fortunate opportunity to dine at many Michelin starred restaurants. While obviously the MDR is not comparable, when people compare the quality to below Applebees, Red Lobster, etc that is a far stretch.

 

The food on my recent cruises on the Symphony and Adventure was pretty good and I would compare it favorably to what is served on land at similar price point.

 

 

I would compare the food on RCI to any of the restaurants on Restaurant Row in Manhattan.

 

I personally would never eat in a Red Lobster.

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I would compare the food on RCI to any of the restaurants on Restaurant Row in Manhattan.

 

I personally would never eat in a Red Lobster.

 

Must get expensive dining at Le Bernardin every night.

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We found the food so varied and delicious in the Windjammer Marketplace on Radiance of the Seas that we ate there every meal. Only ate in the MDR twice the whole week. We thought the same of the Windjammer when we were on Oasis of the Seas. I laugh when people say they 'can't find a damned thing to eat'. I wonder what and where they eat at home, poor things.

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