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back.2.cruising

Buffet for dinner?

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Hello everyone,

 

it’s been a long time since my last cruise. When we used to cruise, we sometimes didn’t feel like going to the MDR for dinner. What time is dinner served in the Buffet? What are some options? We will be on the Carnival Sunrise. 
 

Thank you. 

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Hmm, I want to say dinner began at 5:30.  There were actually some of the same options as on the MDR menu for entrees.  We actually ate entirely buffet for dinner on 1 cruise and never missed the MDR.  They do not have the same desserts which was the only bummer.

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37 minutes ago, trvlgirlmq said:

Hmm, I want to say dinner began at 5:30.  There were actually some of the same options as on the MDR menu for entrees.  We actually ate entirely buffet for dinner on 1 cruise and never missed the MDR.  They do not have the same desserts which was the only bummer.


Thank you. What late night food is available? 

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28 minutes ago, back.2.cruising said:


Thank you. What late night food is available? 

 

One thing to be aware of, the food on the buffet at dinner is... not great. I love Carnival and almost every other food option they have, but I find the food on the buffet to be borderline inedible. For lunch and dinner anyway. Breakfast is fine. We always have dinner in the MDR because it is SO MUCH better than eating at the buffet. IMO, the quality of difference between what you get in the MDR and what you get from the buffet is shocking.

 

Anyway, late night food - you'll have 24-hour pizza. But, be aware that it can be very busy at times. Especially like shortly after 11 pm, when the deli closes. There will be also be a few late night offerings on the buffet like hot  ham and cheese, hot dogs, etc. I want to say they start putting that out around 11 or 11:30 and it stays out until 1 am or so. There's also room service, but there is a charge for that after 10 pm or so.

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2 hours ago, back.2.cruising said:

Hello everyone,

 

it’s been a long time since my last cruise. When we used to cruise, we sometimes didn’t feel like going to the MDR for dinner. What time is dinner served in the Buffet? What are some options? We will be on the Carnival Sunrise. 
 

Thank you. 

On our Sunrise cruise last September Guys Burger was open until 6pm most evenings if you wanted something early.  Lido was 6-9:30, Deli open until 11, and Pizza 24 hours.  There is also room service - hot foods have a charge, but we got one night and it was very tasty.

 

 

2 hours ago, trvlgirlmq said:

Hmm, I want to say dinner began at 5:30.  There were actually some of the same options as on the MDR menu for entrees.  We actually ate entirely buffet for dinner on 1 cruise and never missed the MDR.  They do not have the same desserts which was the only bummer.

Something you can do is go to the MDR just for dessert (or just for an appetizer) if there is one menu item you really want, but don't want to spend the whole meal.

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It isn't uncommon for us to do the buffet 1 night during a cruise.  Sometimes we just don't want to suffer through a 90 minute service.  

 

The quality is on par with what you expect from a buffet.  We usually find a few of the entree selections are usually the same things that are on the dinner menu.  They will also have the carved meat station along with an assorted selection of sides.

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9 hours ago, back.2.cruising said:

Hello everyone,

 

it’s been a long time since my last cruise. When we used to cruise, we sometimes didn’t feel like going to the MDR for dinner. What time is dinner served in the Buffet? What are some options? We will be on the Carnival Sunrise. 
 

Thank you. 

Been cruising for many years. Stopped the MDR years ago for several reasons. Not just the food either. Always do the buffet for many reasons also. Variety, see what it looks like before you take it, try a little of something you never had before, so many choices for desert. No sitting waiting for it to arrive, no waiting for refills and so on. Most of the time the food is the same and then some. The MDR does offer steak and other items every night along with a few choices of ice cream. You may not kow this. If you are eating at the buffet, you can order a steak from the main dining room.

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39 minutes ago, twodaywonder said:

If you are eating at the buffet, you can order a steak from the main dining room.

 

How? There aren't any servers or anyone to even place an order with, at least not that I saw on Imagination. 

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15 minutes ago, Cyn874 said:

 

How? There aren't any servers or anyone to even place an order with, at least not that I saw on Imagination. 

Ask anyone behind the buffet. They will get a manager and he will take your order. Never has been a problem on any cruise line.  On the Royal Harmony they had people in charge going around asking they they can get anything for you. I ordered the NY Strip. About 20 min later. I had it. 

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never heard of this, so some is going down 6 decks to get you a steak? 

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11 hours ago, back.2.cruising said:


Thank you. What late night food is available? 

Jimzim (look him up on youtube) just did a good long video on Panorama which covers the problem with the Carnival dinner buffet (and I just found the same issue on the Breeze).  Typical buffet dinner: salad bar, white rice, steamed broccoli, baked potatoes, maybe around 4 sort of heavily prepared meats to choose from.   And that's it.  Just not a lot of selection, although I thought the quality was fine.  We find that the Carnival mdr gets us in and out in around an hour typically, and we eat dinners in the mdr.

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I don't think we ever ate dinner in the buffet. 

 

 

4 hours ago, ray98 said:

Sometimes we just don't want to suffer through a 90 minute service.  

 

 

The horrors of eating out

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We eat every meal at the buffet after our first cruise didn't go so well.the buffet on carnival these days are lacking in quality and selection.it might depend on what ship you are on too.last carnival Cruise was on ecstacy.i think other than breakfast we ate from the deli all but the last night.the deli wasn't as good as it used to be and pizza neither I only tried it once line was too long for me.

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Well, 

13 hours ago, back.2.cruising said:

Hello everyone,

 

it’s been a long time since my last cruise. When we used to cruise, we sometimes didn’t feel like going to the MDR for dinner. What time is dinner served in the Buffet? What are some options? We will be on the Carnival Sunrise. 
 

Thank you. 

 

On our last 3 cruises we did a mix of the MDR and buffet for dinner, and experiences varied by ship.

 

On the Ecstasy in 2017, they served several dishes that were similar to the ones on the MDR menu each night, but it was kinda "meh", not bad, but not as good as the food we had in the MDR.

 

On the Miracle in 2018, same deal as the Ecstasy, but this time, to our amazement, the food at the buffet really good and was better than most of what we had in the MDR.

 

Most recently on the Sunshine in April of 2019, lunch and dinner at the buffet was something called "Comfort Kitchen" and none of the MDR dishes were served and the food was very underwhelming and pretty much the same kind of stuff everyday. After a couple tries, we just stuck to the other non-buffet Lido food options that were much better.

 

 

 

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Going to the buffet early helps in getting just-prepared  food that hasn’t been sitting around.

You’ll see a lot of frequent cruisers at the buffet vs MDR- not wanting to spend 15 hours in the MDR every night.

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15 hours ago, coevan said:

never heard of this, so some is going down 6 decks to get you a steak? 

Do not know if they are. Maybe just doing it in the kitchen there. Have no idea. Maybe they just call and order it. Someone brings it up when it is ready. However. 6 decks is only 1 elevator.

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13 hours ago, schazzy said:

Well, 

 

On our last 3 cruises we did a mix of the MDR and buffet for dinner, and experiences varied by ship.

 

On the Ecstasy in 2017, they served several dishes that were similar to the ones on the MDR menu each night, but it was kinda "meh", not bad, but not as good as the food we had in the MDR.

 

On the Miracle in 2018, same deal as the Ecstasy, but this time, to our amazement, the food at the buffet really good and was better than most of what we had in the MDR.

 

Most recently on the Sunshine in April of 2019, lunch and dinner at the buffet was something called "Comfort Kitchen" and none of the MDR dishes were served and the food was very underwhelming and pretty much the same kind of stuff everyday. After a couple tries, we just stuck to the other non-buffet Lido food options that were much better.

 

 

 

Carnival has the worst buffet. But the very best steak house.  Princess, Celebrity and Royals are all excellent. Some of there ships are better than others. Still, Blows away Carnival's big time.

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I really did not like the buffet on our last Horizon cruise. My husband and son enjoyed it just fine. That said, I don’t like buffets at home and they do. I’m not a heavy meat/fish/seafood eater and found my choices limited (I’m not a vegetarian). I loved the MDR and specialty restaurants. When we cruise the Radiance in June/July (just my husband and I), I plan to book us solid into the restaurants- leaving a couple nights available for MDR. He can buffet at lunch 😆

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2 minutes ago, lensonlife said:

I really did not like the buffet on our last Horizon cruise. My husband and son enjoyed it just fine. That said, I don’t like buffets at home and they do. I’m not a heavy meat/fish/seafood eater and found my choices limited (I’m not a vegetarian). I loved the MDR and specialty restaurants. When we cruise the Radiance in June/July (just my husband and I), I plan to book us solid into the restaurants- leaving a couple nights available for MDR. He can buffet at lunch 😆

 I’m not a heavy meat/fish/seafood eater and found my choices limited (I’m not a vegetarian). What do you eat? What's left?

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Just now, twodaywonder said:

 I’m not a heavy meat/fish/seafood eater and found my choices limited (I’m not a vegetarian). What do you eat? What's left?

I do eat meat lol- I like chicken, but not dark meat! I will eat bacon and ham. They had an eggplant dish on the buffet that I liked- I’ll gravitate towards things like that. One night they had fried chicken and I’m not going to lie- there was all but a fight over it. I was like WTH is even going on in here?!!! I would have eaten that, but I did not need it that badly. Reasons I avoid the buffet. 

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2 minutes ago, lensonlife said:

I do eat meat lol- I like chicken, but not dark meat! I will eat bacon and ham. They had an eggplant dish on the buffet that I liked- I’ll gravitate towards things like that. One night they had fried chicken and I’m not going to lie- there was all but a fight over it. I was like WTH is even going on in here?!!! I would have eaten that, but I did not need it that badly. Reasons I avoid the buffet. 

Must have been on Carnival. We are just off of the Sky Princess. Awesome variety. All types of chicken and so much more. The buffet's yes buffet's more than one are so big. There was never a line or any problem finding a table. Even when we first boarded. No sea day was ever a problem. 

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10 minutes ago, twodaywonder said:

Must have been on Carnival. We are just off of the Sky Princess. Awesome variety. All types of chicken and so much more. The buffet's yes buffet's more than one are so big. There was never a line or any problem finding a table. Even when we first boarded. No sea day was ever a problem. 

Yes- Carnival! I loved all the other dining options, except for the buffet. Not to mention that the floor is a literal death trap. I’m surprised there are not more comments here about the slipperiness of the floor in the are of the buffet on the Horizon. It was unbelievably unsafe despite crews efforts to maintain it. So many times I near broke my neck which was terrifying. I live in VT and have had the experience of breaking my ankle in three places from a fall on ice. It’s like walking on ice in there! With a plate of food, and sometimes a buzz 😂🤪

Edited by lensonlife

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Carnival's buffet dinner is lacking in variety.  They do have a carving station and offer a couple of different types of meat.  Their salad bar has a good variety.  I am not a huge meat eater and don't find many alternative dishes.  I like their vegetable lasagna when they serve it.  I've actually ordered a BLT at the deli for dinner and it's very good.  I love the bread they use for their deli sandwiches.  The dinner buffet is definitely hit or miss.  Sometimes they have something good and sometimes they don't.

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15 hours ago, schazzy said:

 

Most recently on the Sunshine in April of 2019, lunch and dinner at the buffet was something called "Comfort Kitchen" and none of the MDR dishes were served and the food was very underwhelming and pretty much the same kind of stuff everyday. After a couple tries, we just stuck to the other non-buffet Lido food options that were much better.

 

 

 

We just got off the Sunshine out of Charleston about a week ago and this was exactly the way the buffet was.  We usually alternate between the buffet and the MDR but this was the first time in 10 cruises that we did not like the buffet food.  Both variety (no Indian ever!) and quality we lacking.  The buffet opened at 5:30 and closed at 9.  Late night choices were pizza or deli. 

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