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FirstAnthem

Celiac at Sea—gluten free on Oasis April 1-8

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We are just back from our very first cruise on Oasis. Our daughter, age 13, has celiac disease. Vacationing can be a challenge, and whenever we do something for the first time, we are apprehensive. We have gone to Disney many times just so she can have a worry free eating experience! Well, we had NOTHING to worry about! Happily, she ate as well as we did on this cruise! I’ll review each dining venue we experienced....

 

Windjammer—I swore we would avoid the windjammer on embarkation day after reading the horror stories about the crowds. I also didn’t think the hectic-ness of embarkation day would be a good atmosphere to try to find a GF meal for our daughter. I packed stuff in my backpack for her to have for lunch (prepackaged things like crackers, shelf stable hummus, popcorn, granola bars, etc). But once we boarded, our son (age 11) made a beeline for the windjammer (his idea of heaven) and somehow we found ourselves in the middle of windjammer on embarkation day, the one thing I swore wouldn’t happen! And my daughter looked at me and so sweetly said “can I eat here, too?” I had to make it work. Well, it was absolutely FINE! We got there about 11:30 ish, and the crowds weren’t heavy yet. I asked for a chef, who came out and told her she could have anything she wanted! She ordered a burger and fries. We got our lunch, and she waited a little bit for hers, but the chef delivered it with a smile! WE WERE SO HAPPY. For the rest of the week in windjammer, we asked for a chef, who came out and took her order and it worked out great! Sometimes there was a little miscommunication (like she didn’t get fries one day, but instead got two turkey sandwiches) but it was fine. And if you let your headwaiter know you will be at windjammer the next morning or afternoon, they order your meal so when you go to the windjammer the next day, it’s easier and less of a wait.

 

Main Dining Room—a celiac’s dream! Our wait staff was TOP NOTCH. On the first night, my daughter ordered from the couple of GF choices labeled on the menu. But from that day forward, she ordered her meal for the next night, and when doing that, she could order anything she wanted, dessert included, and they made a GF version! She ordered from the regular adult menu. She ate wonderful meals for dinner every night. She couldn’t have been happier. For lunch in the MDR, she ordered the shrimp risotto off the menu every day, and that is labeled GF on the menu. If she had wanted to divert from that, we would have ordered her lunch for the next day with our head waiter at night.

 

Sorrentos—she only went here once on the first night, but it was a great experience. No cross contamination, everything is separate. You do have to wait about 15 minutes for GF pizza, and you get the whole pizza, not just a slice, but it was fun for her to be able to get pizza too, and we brought it to our room and ate it on the balcony! It wasn’t her favorite GF pizza, but it was more the experience. She felt like everyone else.

 

Giovanni’s Table—we had dinner here one night. Their menu has SO MANY labeled GF choices! She had an amazing, delicious gluten free dinner. She was catered to. It was fantastic and we will definitely go back here on our next cruise. Again, she ordered off the adult menu. She had pork belly and grilled shrimp and potato purée and ate every bite.

 

We had a fantastic GF experience on Oasis. The staff was AMAZING. We brought snacks and some small desserts with us (all prepackaged). We definitely needed those things. So I would suggest doing that. Our daughter isn’t a big breakfast eater, but we could have ordered her a breakfast the night before with the headwaiter. We also could have gotten GF at Park Cafe, she just never ended up wanting to eat there. All we would have needed to do was to ask for the manager and they would have helped us. Maybe next time.

 

One additional thing—on port days we returned to the ship for lunch and ate at windjammer. If we had done an all day excursion, we would have packed her a lunch from the things I brought just in case. Having never cruised I had no idea how it would go. I brought crackers, shelf stable hummus, pouches of tuna and mayo packets, granola bars, popcorn, nuts, etc. but we ended up coming back to the ship—it was much easier to do that than I anticipated. We could have ordered her a GF meal for Labadee, our headwaiter offered that, but she wanted to come back to the ship, so we didn’t order that. The order for that happens the night before as well. Just so you know it’s an option.

 

If you have celiac, don’t worry at all about your cruise. They are highly capable to prepare safe GF food. And it’s delicious! My daughter didn’t get sick the entire cruise. It was truly wonderful.

 

Oh! Another tip! The two nights we were in FL before our cruise, we ate at a little restaurant called Mi Island restaurant in Merritt Island, less than 10 min from the port. They do GF right!!! The meals were fantastic, they completely understand cross contamination and safe GF cooking practices. It’s a casual place, great choices. We ate here both nights because our daughter (and the rest of us!) enjoyed it so much. I highly recommend it if you are in town before your cruise! Check out their reviews on Find Me Gluten Free online. You can’t go wrong here.

 

I hope I’ve helped. Please ask any questions!

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Very pleased with your experience .

We have 2 RC cruises coming up this year and it will be the first time we have cruised since my wife was diagnosed as celiac .

Can I ask when you looked at the menus for the next evening if there was nothing on it your daughter liked could she basically order anything she wanted and it would be prepared for the next evening?

My wife also has digestion issues and food such as vegetables need to be cooked a certain way for her . Hopefully we will be ok - I am more encouraged after reading your review.

Did you go to see the head waiter on embarkation day to discuss your needs?

 

 

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Trixie 21—yes I believe if my daughter had wanted to make modifications with her order she could have. They were bending over backwards to help. They are quite accommodating!! On embarkation day, we went to the MDR and spoke to the maitre d and confirmed that our reservation was marked as celiac. The head waiter wasn’t around at that time. We discussed everything fully with our wait staff and head waiter that evening at dinner. Also, be sure to have your reservation marked as celiac/GF before your cruise, and email special needs at Royal Caribbean to make sure they know about your wife’s celiac/GF. That way they have enough GF food stocked for the cruise.

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Trixie 21—as I think about it more, with your wife’s digestion issues and needing things like vegetables prepared a certain way (I understand—I’ve had similar digestion issues in the past!) I would bring these up to the maitre d on embarkation day and I bet they will get the head waiter, or make note of it, so dinner that night will involve less explaining.

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Thank you sincerely for this review from the dad of a 5 year old celiac daughter who will be taking our first family cruise on Oasis next month! You already know how feeding your kid and making them feel included without it feeling forced can consume a parent’s planning process (not only for vacation but for so much else), so reading this is so great!

 

I’m a little surprised windjammer was such a great option for your family-that’s very encouraging to hear! I was thinking of trying that out on embarkation day, but had the same concerns as you. My kids are much younger (5 & 3), so based on your review it seems I could just order any GF food I know they’ll eat & it will be made? Is that what your experience was?

 

Thank you again so much! Glad your experience was so great!

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Hi Gatordad! I couldn’t wait for you to read my review! Yes, I believe that they are able to make pretty much anything you need. Maybe they are more limited the first day, but beyond that, yes. Actually, that first day in the windjammer, when the chef came out I asked him what she could have and he said “what would she like?” My daughter’s eyes lit up. It was such a successful trip. I would bring snacks and treats though, to supplement. My daughter likes Hershey bars and different candy that we weren't sure would be available on the ship. We brought GF Oreos, things like that. We brought a roller carry on full of food for her! lol Enough for an army, but it’s my worst nightmare to be somewhere and she wants or needs something and I don’t have anything, you know?

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They do have packaged Udi GF cookies you can ask for. Bagels and hamburger buns etc. also packaged. Many may not know so you need to ask around and find someone in charge.

Glad it working out well!!

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Thank you for this post! I have celiac's and am cruising soon! So glad to hear that they handle it well!

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Hi Gatordad! I couldn’t wait for you to read my review! Yes, I believe that they are able to make pretty much anything you need. Maybe they are more limited the first day, but beyond that, yes. Actually, that first day in the windjammer, when the chef came out I asked him what she could have and he said “what would she like?” My daughter’s eyes lit up. It was such a successful trip. I would bring snacks and treats though, to supplement. My daughter likes Hershey bars and different candy that we weren't sure would be available on the ship. We brought GF Oreos, things like that. We brought a roller carry on full of food for her! lol Enough for an army, but it’s my worst nightmare to be somewhere and she wants or needs something and I don’t have anything, you know?

 

Oh yes I know that nightmare. This is why we choose vacations carefully (yes we’ve done Disney many times too precisely because they are great with food allergies!)

 

And yes we will have the same rolling suitcase as you! For my kids it’ll be GF pretzels, cookies, breakfast bars, and whatever else my wife tells me we need (3 year old son eats GF too because the family went GF before he started eating food & we just haven’t been in a good place to incorporate into his diet to test him yet). My real concern is for our day in Cozumel as we would like a beach day away from the ship so I’ll have to be sure to bring a sack full for that day!

 

 

I’m super excited for this trip & even more so after reading your review! Thanks!

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I am so glad this went so well for you. Our recent trip on the Enchantment was also wonderful, although last spring on the Indy was ok (did not get glutened and sick, but also not great), but I am looking forward to our Explorer next month. As celiac and vegetarian, it can be a bit more complicated, but those Udi's cookies were a fun find!

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thank you so much for this post, I'm celiac as well and I know how hard it could be at times to eat out , your review made my day :D:D

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Thank you for this post. I just booked Oasis for next February and am already stalking MDR menus. Anyond know if any of the soups (especially the mushroom and garlic ones) are gf (without croutons of course)? TIA!!

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Awesome! My 7 year old daughter has celiac disease and we did the Grandeur last year which was awesome, doing it again this summer but considering Oasis next year. I was worried the bigger ships might not be able to handle it as well but your post made me feel better!! Thank again for the great info!

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On ‎4‎/‎12‎/‎2018 at 8:46 AM, FirstAnthem said:

We are just back from our very first cruise on Oasis. Our daughter, age 13, has celiac disease. Vacationing can be a challenge, and whenever we do something for the first time, we are apprehensive. We have gone to Disney many times just so she can have a worry free eating experience! Well, we had NOTHING to worry about! Happily, she ate as well as we did on this cruise! I’ll review each dining venue we experienced....

 

Windjammer—I swore we would avoid the windjammer on embarkation day after reading the horror stories about the crowds. I also didn’t think the hectic-ness of embarkation day would be a good atmosphere to try to find a GF meal for our daughter. I packed stuff in my backpack for her to have for lunch (prepackaged things like crackers, shelf stable hummus, popcorn, granola bars, etc). But once we boarded, our son (age 11) made a beeline for the windjammer (his idea of heaven) and somehow we found ourselves in the middle of windjammer on embarkation day, the one thing I swore wouldn’t happen! And my daughter looked at me and so sweetly said “can I eat here, too?” I had to make it work. Well, it was absolutely FINE! We got there about 11:30 ish, and the crowds weren’t heavy yet. I asked for a chef, who came out and told her she could have anything she wanted! She ordered a burger and fries. We got our lunch, and she waited a little bit for hers, but the chef delivered it with a smile! WE WERE SO HAPPY. For the rest of the week in windjammer, we asked for a chef, who came out and took her order and it worked out great! Sometimes there was a little miscommunication (like she didn’t get fries one day, but instead got two turkey sandwiches) but it was fine. And if you let your headwaiter know you will be at windjammer the next morning or afternoon, they order your meal so when you go to the windjammer the next day, it’s easier and less of a wait.

 

Main Dining Room—a celiac’s dream! Our wait staff was TOP NOTCH. On the first night, my daughter ordered from the couple of GF choices labeled on the menu. But from that day forward, she ordered her meal for the next night, and when doing that, she could order anything she wanted, dessert included, and they made a GF version! She ordered from the regular adult menu. She ate wonderful meals for dinner every night. She couldn’t have been happier. For lunch in the MDR, she ordered the shrimp risotto off the menu every day, and that is labeled GF on the menu. If she had wanted to divert from that, we would have ordered her lunch for the next day with our head waiter at night.

 

Sorrentos—she only went here once on the first night, but it was a great experience. No cross contamination, everything is separate. You do have to wait about 15 minutes for GF pizza, and you get the whole pizza, not just a slice, but it was fun for her to be able to get pizza too, and we brought it to our room and ate it on the balcony! It wasn’t her favorite GF pizza, but it was more the experience. She felt like everyone else.

 

Giovanni’s Table—we had dinner here one night. Their menu has SO MANY labeled GF choices! She had an amazing, delicious gluten free dinner. She was catered to. It was fantastic and we will definitely go back here on our next cruise. Again, she ordered off the adult menu. She had pork belly and grilled shrimp and potato purée and ate every bite.

 

We had a fantastic GF experience on Oasis. The staff was AMAZING. We brought snacks and some small desserts with us (all prepackaged). We definitely needed those things. So I would suggest doing that. Our daughter isn’t a big breakfast eater, but we could have ordered her a breakfast the night before with the headwaiter. We also could have gotten GF at Park Cafe, she just never ended up wanting to eat there. All we would have needed to do was to ask for the manager and they would have helped us. Maybe next time.

 

One additional thing—on port days we returned to the ship for lunch and ate at windjammer. If we had done an all day excursion, we would have packed her a lunch from the things I brought just in case. Having never cruised I had no idea how it would go. I brought crackers, shelf stable hummus, pouches of tuna and mayo packets, granola bars, popcorn, nuts, etc. but we ended up coming back to the ship—it was much easier to do that than I anticipated. We could have ordered her a GF meal for Labadee, our headwaiter offered that, but she wanted to come back to the ship, so we didn’t order that. The order for that happens the night before as well. Just so you know it’s an option.

 

If you have celiac, don’t worry at all about your cruise. They are highly capable to prepare safe GF food. And it’s delicious! My daughter didn’t get sick the entire cruise. It was truly wonderful.

 

Oh! Another tip! The two nights we were in FL before our cruise, we ate at a little restaurant called Mi Island restaurant in Merritt Island, less than 10 min from the port. They do GF right!!! The meals were fantastic, they completely understand cross contamination and safe GF cooking practices. It’s a casual place, great choices. We ate here both nights because our daughter (and the rest of us!) enjoyed it so much. I highly recommend it if you are in town before your cruise! Check out their reviews on Find Me Gluten Free online. You can’t go wrong here.

 

I hope I’ve helped. Please ask any questions!

Thank you so very much I have just been told im celiac from my docters after tests done and we have 2 cruises one on the Oasis in May 5 for 7 days and the 18th May 2019 for 12 was really worried about going on then as I loved the windjammer as my husband loves that than dinning. you have helped so much.. Im 54 years old now and to be told I cant eat breads cakes and pudding alone with my favourite sauces and mayo im very gutted.   thanks so much you have rested my worries   Sue

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