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MDR food - Do you feel Celebrity is living off its past reputation?

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3 hours ago, calicakes said:

So, I'm curious, for long time cruisers.....  When I was a kid, I would watch The LOVE Boat in awe, in awe of all the food.  Especially, the MIDNIGHT Buffet.  Was that such a thing?  On the Promenade deck. LOL. 

 

Celebrity had a midnight buffet which was fabulous, held nightly,  it was held in the MDR, loads of ice sculptures and lots of food and desserts.   The 2nd Formal night was out of this world.   I would guess they eliminated it about 10 to 15 years ago and it was replaced for a short time with waiters walking around the ship with various hors d"oeuvres.  In the case of the midnight buffet there was so much wasted food, often many came into the buffet just to look at everything and left without eating.  The formal night buffet they would let people in a half hour early in a line to take pictures. 

 

This also led to one of the classic jokes on a cruise ship, what time is the midnight buffet.   

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On 9/7/2019 at 2:14 PM, TeeRick said:

Calicakes, You have brought up an interesting point.  What is it with the desserts in the Oceanview buffet on Celebrity?  They look good but in general are disappointing in taste.  What is your opinion as a baker?  More sugar maybe?  The cookies are usually all we will enjoy there as they are pretty good.  But outside the buffet in Cafe al Bacio the desserts are much better so Celebrity knows how to make them tasty.  But why not in the buffet?  We have found the mediocre desserts on every Royal C ship we have sailed in the Windjammer Buffet too.

We ageee. Just come back from our 3rd voyage on Cunard’s QM2.  Although we have only had  2 cruises with  Celebrity there was no comparison in standard with the buffet on QM2 which was ok BUT all the sweet offerings on QM2 were far superior to Celebrity 

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1 hour ago, boscobeans said:

 

Unless  you cruised 20 years ago it would be hard to understand how different it was...

 

Back then  there was so much more to the whole dining issue.

You had a waiter and he had an assistant who had a reasonable number of tables to serve.

There was a sommelier AND a bartender to take care of your beverages.

The nightly amuse bouche to cleanse the palate.

The variety of menu offerings over the course of even the longer cruises was amazing.

White gloved staff and fully dressed tables and chairs on formal nights with live music.

The nightly dessert presentation..

Everyone on the ship had the same food and service, so different than the SUITE LIFE of today.

The meals in the MDR were Excellent and there was no need for "Special Dining".

 My only special culinary treatment from a butler was plate of shrimp at 4 pm each day.

 

All that was THEN and not now.

Everything  changes including what people are looking for, what they are used to and what they feel is essential for them.

 

We will continue to cruise as often as we can but NO LONGER will Celebrity be exceeding our expectations as Royal Caribbean has really closed the gap.

 

 

 

 

 

I completely agree, Twenty years ago, Celebrity did not have to "give away" free booze, include gratuities and give OBC to fill a ship. When the decision was made to include all these perks (which I admit we have taken advantage of for at least the last 10 cruises), something had to give and it was the quality of the food in both the buffet and the MDR. Even the icescream in the buffet did not taste the same. The great thing about the OBC is we supplement the amount to eat more than half the nights we're on board. I will add, it definitely wasn't worth using the OPC on our August 18 Summit sailing. Even the Tuscan Grill and Quisine did not meet up to their usual standards. 

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15 minutes ago, weregoingcruising said:

Do you remember rack of veal on the Century or Horizon?

 

 

Zenith, before the suites had verandas.. 

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21 hours ago, Iamcruzin said:

Princess, Royal Caribbean, Celebrity it doesn't matter. The desserts all look pretty, delicious and sweet until you put them in your mouth and they taste like wax. 

Exactly our conclusion, with some exceptions in the specialty restaurants. . Even Princess' vaunted Love Boat Dream went downhill. 

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58 minutes ago, dkjretired said:

 

Celebrity had a midnight buffet which was fabulous, held nightly,  it was held in the MDR, loads of ice sculptures and lots of food and desserts.   The 2nd Formal night was out of this world.   I would guess they eliminated it about 10 to 15 years ago and it was replaced for a short time with waiters walking around the ship with various hors d"oeuvres.  In the case of the midnight buffet there was so much wasted food, often many came into the buffet just to look at everything and left without eating.  The formal night buffet they would let people in a half hour early in a line to take pictures. 

 

This also led to one of the classic jokes on a cruise ship, what time is the midnight buffet.   

 

YES I remember going in before the food was served so passengers could take pictures of all the fantastic displays and all of the food.

 

The following is a shot off the net from a cruise on the wonderful MERCURY

Edited by boscobeans
add photo

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Was Mercury an X ship? 

 

We've only been cruising since 2013 and I admit, I only ever book with "perks". 

 

We've only cruise Aqua on X and I think the desserts there are pretty good.  

 

At this point, I don't even take a dessert in the buffet anymore.   

 

Are the desserts good in the MDR?  I haven't had a meal in the MDR. 

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17 minutes ago, calicakes said:

Was Mercury an X ship? 

 

We've only been cruising since 2013 and I admit, I only ever book with "perks". 

 

We've only cruise Aqua on X and I think the desserts there are pretty good.  

 

At this point, I don't even take a dessert in the buffet anymore.   

 

Are the desserts good in the MDR?  I haven't had a meal in the MDR. 

Yes. Mercury was the first ship we sailed on Celebrity.  

Just as the desserts are hit and miss in Blu, they are the same in the MDR.

Edited by Luvcrusn

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On 4/10/2019 at 9:51 PM, SJSULIBRARIAN said:

 

I think this is only on the NS and Konigsdam, the ships that have Club Orange. As far as I know all other ships offer breakfast in the PG to Neptune and Pinnacle Suite guests. It was available a month ago on the Nieuw Amsterdam.

 

3 hours ago, boscobeans said:

 

Unless  you cruised 20 years ago it would be hard to understand how different it was...

 

Back then  there was so much more to the whole dining issue.

You had a waiter and he had an assistant who had a reasonable number of tables to serve.

There was a sommelier AND a bartender to take care of your beverages.

The nightly amuse bouche to cleanse the palate.

The variety of menu offerings over the course of even the longer cruises was amazing.

White gloved staff and fully dressed tables and chairs on formal nights with live music.

The nightly dessert presentation..

Everyone on the ship had the same food and service, so different than the SUITE LIFE of today.

The meals in the MDR were Excellent and there was no need for "Special Dining".

 My only special culinary treatment from a butler was plate of shrimp at 4 pm each day.

 

All that was THEN and not now.

Everything  changes including what people are looking for, what they are used to and what they feel is essential for them.

 

We will continue to cruise as often as we can but NO LONGER will Celebrity be exceeding our expectations as Royal Caribbean has really closed the gap.

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 hours ago, Loracpin2 said:

I completely agree, Twenty years ago, Celebrity did not have to "give away" free booze, include gratuities and give OBC to fill a ship. When the decision was made to include all these perks (which I admit we have taken advantage of for at least the last 10 cruises), something had to give and it was the quality of the food in both the buffet and the MDR. Even the icescream in the buffet did not taste the same. The great thing about the OBC is we supplement the amount to eat more than half the nights we're on board. I will add, it definitely wasn't worth using the OPC on our August 18 Summit sailing. Even the Tuscan Grill and Quisine did not meet up to their usual standards. 

 

 

WOW! boscobeans....

You sure brought back memories. We haven't seen anything like that for many, many years.

Those days are long gone..if I remember, most of the ships had real staterooms...far larger than what they now call suites.

The ships were smaller and most all had bathtubs. Today they remove the tubs and create more cabins.

Back then they had professional entertainment and informative lectures. Now we get port talks and what is called music continuously blasted everywhere on the ship.

Thanks for the memories....

 

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'I completely agree, Twenty years ago, Celebrity did not have to "give away" free booze, include gratuities and give OBC to fill a ship. When the decision was made to include all these perks (which I admit we have taken advantage of for at least thelast 10 cruises)'

 

Sorry to disagree with you.

 

Celebrity does NOT give away FREE BOOZE,GRATUITIES and/or OBC now to fill ships. You pay for those perks. We are Elite+ on Celebrity and have cruised Celebrity since 1992 on the Zenith. 

Last week I priced out the Edge Inside Cabin and posted the difference been:

1. No perks $899

2. 2 perks.  $1,235

3. 4 perks. $1 354

I did not include tax and post charges above as they are the same.  

So, nothing is free. You pay on all cruise lines for perks. Do a search on this forum as perks were discussed intensively.

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On 9/7/2019 at 7:05 PM, jasm8449 said:

It appears to me that too many Oceanview desserts rely on gelatin instead of heavy cream and eggs for their structure. 

I knew it was something and I couldn't put my finger on it.  I also think that the cruise lines order them from a vender because they are all the same across the board for the 3 lines I sail on. The creme brûlée that is served every night in the MDR  on Royal Caribbean must be made from instant custard. It also had a flavorless gelatin taste and texture as do the little fruit tarts on Celebrity and Princess.

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The MDR desserts on Princess, and to a lesser degree on Celebrity, look gorgeous and taste blah. The buffet desserts are awful. The gelatin comment above is spot on.

 

Thanks to a post somewhere on these boards, I learned that I can order fresh berries for dessert in the MDR on X. That's what I did this summer. I really enjoyed it, and saved lots of empty calories. 

 

I will say that I rather enjoy the oatmeal cookies, however.

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7 minutes ago, MamaFej said:

The MDR desserts on Princess, and to a lesser degree on Celebrity, look gorgeous and taste blah. The buffet desserts are awful. The gelatin comment above is spot on.

 

Thanks to a post somewhere on these boards, I learned that I can order fresh berries for dessert in the MDR on X. That's what I did this summer. I really enjoyed it, and saved lots of empty calories. 

 

I will say that I rather enjoy the oatmeal cookies, however.

Those are DH's absolute fave!!! Each cruise day 1 he befriends a crew member to hook him up with them every day because they don't always have them. 

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We sailed on the Chandris line so long ago I don't remember it but we have sailed Celebrity pretty consistently since 2007 (14 times). The food has definitely gone down hill but we just came off the Reflection Baltic cruise and the 4 of us thought the MDR food was as good or better than we have had recently. We've also sailed several times on Princess and feel they do a few things better than Celebrity but also many things not as well. We have considered trying Holland but wish they had a shared loyalty program with Princess.

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