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Coastal Kitchen: Feeling Like A Virgin All Over Again!


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After 25+ years of cruising Royal, it's rare to feel like there's something new you haven't gotten a chance to try yet, outside of a new class of ship.

 

I'm finally getting something new, Royal Suite Class.

 

Haven't sailed in a suite on Oasis or Quantum classes since it came to be.

 

I have two booked right now, god willing, we ever get to sail again. 

 

I am Sea class on Odyssey  and Sky on Allure.

 

Told my wife about coastal kitchen very excitedly, expecting a similar reaction.

 

 She replied, "You mean we don't get to eat in the main dining room nightly?  I like that vibe in the main dining roo

m. I don't want a "pseudo specialty restaurant" every night"

 

I was like, uh......

 

Help me out.  What should we know about Coastal Kitchen?

Should I convince her to ditch the main dining room nightly?

Do a mix of main dining room, CK, and our usual specialties.

 

What do you recommend?

 

Any other things I shouldn't miss about Royal Suite Class?  Everything else looks like normal suite amenities on the other ships?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I've read mixed reviews saying some ships have 1 menu, some have 4. Seems like oasis has the best ? But I havent sampled them all.

 

Maybe you could do some of each. Some like the convenience of coastal kitchen as much as the food. 

 

Some nights when you dont like the menu in Mdr as much, try it. I dont think it has to be all one or the other. I got anytime dining, so I will also check out the buffet or chops or who knows. Play it by ear.

 

I haven't seen rave reviews about coastal kitchen, only that there arent 7 menus for the 7 nights of the week?

 

Enjoy. I'm sure some must love it. Better service. 

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When in Sky Class, if you do plan to eat in the CK, make your reservations with the Concierge a few days before your sail date.  Typically, you will get an email 3-5 days before your cruise. Reply to that email with your reservation request for CK dates/times. 
 

In Sea Class, you will need to make reservations when onboard. 
 

M8

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In my experience Coastal Kitchen is somewhere between the MDR and specialty.  Some nights it rivals specialty and some nights it's more like the MDR.

 

I'd suggest using the app to review the CK menus so you can cherry pick what nights to visit CK vs. MDR.  The app might not have the menus right now but *should* once cruising resumes (or maybe there will be QR codes).

 

The filet when offered is usually pretty good if you like steak.  I've had some CK filets that are better than Chops.  Some ships did the filet on night one, some did it a few days into the cruise.  I am saying 'did' because who knows what they'll do going forward.  

 

Typically Sea Class on Quantum class offers a better opportunity to get reservations at CK, Oasis class when in a Sea Class suite somewhat less so.  

 

When in Sky Class I enjoy CK for breakfast and sometimes for lunch. 

 

In this trip report on Anthem I've captured some CK dinners with menus:

 

https://boards.cruisecritic.com/topic/2726374-anthem-jan-5-2020-11-nights-southern-caribbean-recap/?do=findComment&comment=59185299

 

In either Sea or Sky you'll want to secure reservations as soon as you can as they do book up.  Sea class has to wait until onboard to make reservations, Sky class typically will receive an email from the suite concierge a week or so before the cruise and you can reply to request CK reservations before boarding.  

 

CK was billed as "Mediterranean mixed with California farmland" style.  The meals are not typically as filling as MDR.  I find them sized perfectly given so much food on a cruise but if you like big meals you can order more.    Sometimes I feel like more but I know if I eat more I'll just be over stuffed so I've come to just accept them as presented.  

 

Sky Class on Allure comes with Suite Lounge access plus Suite Sun Deck access.  For me they are both nice benefits when in Sky.  In the past Sky class and above on Oasis class would usually include a helipad sailaway party once per cruise.  It's the only way to visit the helipad on Oasis class so inquire about it, depending if they keep this up post-restart.  

Edited by twangster
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As far as dining goes, I'd mix CK with the other restaurants on the ship. There are a few nights where CK is good, but there are so many other options available to limit oneself to any of the restaurants. CK is great for breakfast however, and we do that every morning. Lunch is also good, but the menu is somewhat limited. One of the nice perks of Sky Class is that you can get full MDR menu as room service for any meal. We enjoy spending time on our balcony, and nothing beats a relaxing dinner in the moonlight on the ocean.:classic_cool:

Edited by orville99
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You are not required to eat in coastal kitchen. Take a look at the menus, and decide if there are any meals you would like to have in the dining room.   On each cruise ( for ships with CK) we seem to eat dinner in the dining room at least twice. There are a few dining room menus we like. We book my time dining so we don’t cause a table to go unused most of the week  
 

When we’ve told our CK waiter that we will be dining in the dining room the next night  they’ve offered to bring an item from the dining room menu. But in our experience the item is brought up to CK earlier in evening and  is often dried out by the time we dine. 

 

During a seven night cruise will even do breakfast or lunch dining once or twice in the dining room. 
 

I am never sure how the dining gratuities work since we have access to both the dining room and CK, so we leave our gratuities in place, and leave cash tips daily to our servers in CK.   Perhaps others can provide additional guidance regarding gratuities for CK staff.  
 

As for the other amenities, you can pick and choose as you would any benefit.  The suite/pinnacle party on the helipad is usually very nice. Ironically, that party is often significantly more elaborate on smaller ships.

 

Suite concierges are generally very helpful.

if you mentioned the itineraries  I glossed over it. If you are stopping at Labbade, there’s a very nice suite beach with an upgraded lunch. There is no similar accommodation at Coco Cay

enjoy!

 

Of course, you will be in one of the first boarding groups. 
 

enjoy

m

 


 

 

Edited by cruisegirl1
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1 hour ago, cruisegirl1 said:

 

 


 

I am never sure how the dining gratuities work since we have access to both the dining room and CK, so we leave our gratuities in place, and leave cash tips daily to our servers in CK.   Perhaps others can provide additional guidance regarding gratuities for CK staff.  
 


 

 

They are distributed at the place you dine.  That is why they always ask for your room number so they can be given to the right wait staff.

 

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Breakfast at CK has a little better selection of limited foods and pretty quick.  You won't find a lot of the buffet foods like baked beans, etc but the waffles and french toast are just a bit better.  they have flatbreads, and great eggs benedict.  One time I mentioned I had eggs benedict with a crabcake on another ship and they brought one out.  

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51 minutes ago, irishgal432 said:

They are distributed at the place you dine.  That is why they always ask for your room number so they can be given to the right wait staff.

 

Thanks. I thought they asked the cabin number to verify we had access. But now that you mention it, they do the same thing when we wait in line at my time dining.  i’m always amazed, after one or two nights, they remember our cabin number

 

m

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Hi

 

We are big fans of Coastal Kitchen.

 

We like that we normally have the same waiter who gets to know you and what you like (similar to fixed dining in the dining room).

 

If there is something from the main dining room menu that you like they can bring it.  That may vary by ship but it was never a problem on Anthem.

 

We may go to a specialty restaurant if we want something different but usually are very happy in Coastal Kitchen.

 

I have a lot of reviews in my signature with menu and food pictures if you want to take a look.  
 

Noreen

 

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4 hours ago, Noreen411 said:

Hi

 

We are big fans of Coastal Kitchen.

 

We like that we normally have the same waiter who gets to know you and what you like (similar to fixed dining in the dining room).

 

If there is something from the main dining room menu that you like they can bring it.  That may vary by ship but it was never a problem on Anthem.

 

We may go to a specialty restaurant if we want something different but usually are very happy in Coastal Kitchen.

 

I have a lot of reviews in my signature with menu and food pictures if you want to take a look.  
 

Noreen

 

When we asked for  anything from the dining room we gave a CK staff 24 hours advance notice.   Didn’t work out great for us, I wouldn’t bother again.
 

I did forget to add, on more than one occasion we left CK, went upstairs to Windjammer and got delicious fresh made crepes  for dessert.  I’m not a huge fan of most RCCL deserts But the fresh made crapes were  delicious.
m
 

 

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13 minutes ago, cruisegirl1 said:

When we asked for  anything from the dining room we gave a CK staff 24 hours advance notice.   Didn’t work out great for us, I wouldn’t bother again.
 

I did forget to add, on more than one occasion we left CK, went upstairs to Windjammer and got delicious fresh made crepes  for dessert.  I’m not a huge fan of most RCCL deserts But the fresh made crapes were  delicious.
m
 

 

After reading about people making requests we tried it once and it did not work out well for us either.  Tried to get the mushroom soup from Chops which is very nice and thick and creamy.  What we ended up with after a VERY long wait was some kind of broth, not sure what it was

Edited by molly361
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We prefer to mix it up between CK and specialty restaurants for dinner when we are in a suite on Oasis class ships. I would not want every meal in CK. Since your wife likes the MDR, you could eat there a few nights and fill the rest between CK and specialty.  I would guess mixing it up for breakfast and lunch as well.  Enjoy. 

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I am a bit ambivalent about the dinners at CK.  I concur that the CK filet is among the best on the entire ship so if you are a steak eater, I recommend NOT missing steak night, whenever it is. The Concierge will help you with that.  The other evening meals are not always great, IMO.  We are somewhat pedantic eaters so when they try to get too fancy, they usually lose me.

 

Breakfast is oh-so-awesome in CK.  So much less frantic than in the MDR or Windjammer. The view is so nice and the service is usually very good.  The food is standard breakfast fare, but the surroundings and low stress make it wonderful.

 

I'll be honest.  I have never eaten a lunch in the CK.  I cannot assess that one.

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22 minutes ago, RFerrington said:

I am a bit ambivalent about the dinners at CK.  I concur that the CK filet is among the best on the entire ship so if you are a steak eater, I recommend NOT missing steak night, whenever it is. The Concierge will help you with that.  The other evening meals are not always great, IMO.  We are somewhat pedantic eaters so when they try to get too fancy, they usually lose me.

 

Breakfast is oh-so-awesome in CK.  So much less frantic than in the MDR or Windjammer. The view is so nice and the service is usually very good.  The food is standard breakfast fare, but the surroundings and low stress make it wonderful.

 

I'll be honest.  I have never eaten a lunch in the CK.  I cannot assess that one.

Lunch had only 2 menus.  They do have a nice date appetizer and flatbreads and great ceaser salads. Pretty limited menu but free beer and wine and soft drinks. 

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19 hours ago, RCCL Fan said:

Help me out.  What should we know about Coastal Kitchen?

Should I convince her to ditch the main dining room nightly?

Do a mix of main dining room, CK, and our usual specialties.

CK is a nice place for breakfast and maybe 1 or 2 lunches.  We would take CK over the MDR every night that we are not in specialty dining. That being said, it is a poor for a suites dining room compared to other cruise lines. Too casual for us. Bare tables with tacky placemats. I would like more elegance than a roadside diner. 

 

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(This one looks like it came from Windjammer)

 

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6 hours ago, molly361 said:

After reading about people making requests we tried it once and it did not work out well for us either.  Tried to get the mushroom soup from Chops which is very nice and thick and creamy.  What we ended up with after a VERY long wait was some kind of broth, not sure what it was

We’ve only asked for a few things for the main dining room. Not great results. We’ve never asked for anything from speciality restaurants. 
 

m

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4 hours ago, irishgal432 said:

Lunch had only 2 menus.  They do have a nice date appetizer and flatbreads and great ceaser salads. Pretty limited menu but free beer and wine and soft drinks. 

 

Big fan of breakfast and lunch on most Oasis ships. Oasis the best, Harmony the least favorite

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We love CK if we aren’t doing a specialty restaurant. We’ll usually do all breakfasts, lunch depending on activities/ports, and most dinners. For us it really brings a “small-ship” feel to the Oasis-class ships. As others have said, the wait staff learn your preferences, for example you’ll quickly find your regular drink materialize in front of you after sitting down. We had a good experience making a couple unusual special food requests. 

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36 minutes ago, nashirak said:

We love CK if we aren’t doing a specialty restaurant. We’ll usually do all breakfasts, lunch depending on activities/ports, and most dinners. For us it really brings a “small-ship” feel to the Oasis-class ships. As others have said, the wait staff learn your preferences, for example you’ll quickly find your regular drink materialize in front of you after sitting down. We had a good experience making a couple unusual special food requests. 

 

Regular visitor to CK and almost never request things not on menu. Its hard on the very small kitchen that is already taxed to the breaking point. Just a thought.

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Ok, I'm interested!  We often are in Jr Suites and have never even seen the Coastal Kitchen.  What ships have them and what meals do they serve and are those staying in a Jr. Suite able to eat there anytime?  TIA for any and all info.

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38 minutes ago, lswilmot said:

What ships have them and what meals do they serve and are those staying in a Jr. Suite able to eat there anytime? 

Oasis and Quantum class - JS can eat dinner only when space is available.

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