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Best Steak Onboard was Extra Virgin?!


CruisingWalter
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Many of you know me from my food reviews on the various social channels and I was excited to have 8 whole nights on Valiant Lady to try everything. Our third VV cruise and first on VL.

 

The biggest surprise of the week, the steak in Extra Virgin. Like hands down, knock me off my chair surprised. We cruised with a dear friend of ours, whom many of you also know, with both of us being floored. It might be the best steak I've had at sea, it didn't even need the chili butter on top, but that took it to a whole other level. We also had the steak in Pink Agave and as expected it was a great. But this was even better. So if you're in the mood for a good steak, consider Extra Virgin and I would recommend the meatballs with their crispy bits of pancetta and the Oxtail pasta as your accompaniments. And of course finish with the Affogato. 🙂 

 

I'll be honest, we skipped The Wake for dinner because it was disappointing on our second Scarlet Lady cruise, but we did hear from friends onboard that it was a good experience on VL. 

 

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6 minutes ago, Swells1 said:

My alarm is set for tomorrow (Tuesday) night to make my reservations. I'm getting so excited for this trip!!

YAAAAASSSSSS!!!!  Must eats are Pink Agave and Razzle Dazzle and now I have to add Extra Virgin to that list.  The Wake for Brunch is still excellent.  I think my favorite part of the week was that each restaurant had their own spin on Thanksgiving Dinner and they served it all week so you had a chance to try the different versions if you wanted to. I had the Thanksgiving Dinner in Razzle Dazzle and Test Kitchen. I really enjoyed both versions. 

 

If you're working with a TA they can go in to your booking and make the reservations for you. Can often be faster and less painful for you to let them do it. The app can be..... challenging.... when the reservations open. 🙂 

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Agree--the steak in The Wake in November was far improved from April/May, but was still not the best steak on the ship.  We were very sad that the "secret steak" in Razzle Dazzle had been discontinued, but the steak in Extra Virgin was excellent, as was the pork in Pink Agave.  The chocolate taco recipe in Pink Agave had been changed and was again, better than before,

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@CruisingWalter that steak looks amazing. Back in 2021 the steak I had in the Wake was very good so in a week I may be trying something different there and getting the excellent rib steak in Pink Agave and trying this steak in Extra Virgin.

 

The friend who went with me in 2021 loved the meatballs but I'm gluten intolerant so I passed on those. I couldn't pass up the rolls in the Wake though. I actually ate 2 of them - I was so naughty.

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@cruisingwalter - I got so excited to eat in Extra Virgin after reading your review that I immediately jumped onto the VV app and tried to book it for my upcoming cruise in December. But sadly, Extra Virgin has no availability left for my 4-day cruise.  I will have to put my begging knee pads on when I board and try to bag 'at least a seat at the bar' seat. Maybe a noisy seat in the kitchen. I admit there are a few things in this world worth begging for and a good steak is one of them.

 

I love your new picture by the way 🙂

 

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15 minutes ago, raphael360 said:

@cruisingwalter - I got so excited to eat in Extra Virgin after reading your review that I immediately jumped onto the VV app and tried to book it for my upcoming cruise in December. But sadly, Extra Virgin has no availability left for my 4-day cruise.  I will have to put my begging knee pads on when I board and try to bag 'at least a seat at the bar' seat. Maybe a noisy seat in the kitchen. I admit there are a few things in this world worth begging for and a good steak is one of them.

 

I love your new picture by the way 🙂

 

 

On our cruise, it was no problem getting walk up service at any of the restaurants a little later in the evening. And keep in mind that there is always at least about 40% availability held back from the early reservations. So check in on reservations as soon as you get onboard. And as always, remember that your meal will wholly depend on the culinary team that evening.  We had a pattern of the burger and fries coming out cold in Razzle Dazzle throughout the week, but send it back and get a new order and all was well. So hopefully your culinary team will be as on point as ours was that evening. 

 

And thanks for the kind comments. I was floating in Bimini with the Scarlet Lady over my left shoulder, way off in the background. 🙂 

Edited by CruisingWalter
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3 hours ago, raphael360 said:

@cruisingwalter - I got so excited to eat in Extra Virgin after reading your review that I immediately jumped onto the VV app and tried to book it for my upcoming cruise in December. But sadly, Extra Virgin has no availability left for my 4-day cruise.  I will have to put my begging knee pads on when I board and try to bag 'at least a seat at the bar' seat. Maybe a noisy seat in the kitchen. I admit there are a few things in this world worth begging for and a good steak is one of them.

 

I love your new picture by the way 🙂

 

Book as soon as you board, either on the app or by going to Razzle Dazzle.  A significant percentage of reservations are held back until after boarding.  If all else fails, go to the restaurant at 6pm and ask if there is a time they can work you in!

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On 11/27/2023 at 7:25 AM, CruisingWalter said:

The biggest surprise of the week, the steak in Extra Virgin. Like hands down, knock me off my chair surprised.

Thanks for this! I wouldn't have considered the steak at an Italian place but now I am definitely ordering this. I was told the steak at Pink Agave was a must eat and IT WAS. So I will now try this at Extra Virgin and get my fish at the steakhouse! 😄 

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1 hour ago, babalooo said:

Thanks for this! I wouldn't have considered the steak at an Italian place but now I am definitely ordering this. I was told the steak at Pink Agave was a must eat and IT WAS. So I will now try this at Extra Virgin and get my fish at the steakhouse! 😄 

I hope it's as good for you as it was for us. 🙂

 

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The food in most restaurants on VL in October/Nov 2023 was greatly improved from April/May 2023.  Servers told us that recipes had changed.  The only place we were less happy with was Razzle Dazzle with their new evening menu and no "secret steak."  No longer our favorite evening restaurant.

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On 12/3/2023 at 10:44 PM, cantgetin said:

The food in most restaurants on VL in October/Nov 2023 was greatly improved from April/May 2023.  Servers told us that recipes had changed.  The only place we were less happy with was Razzle Dazzle with their new evening menu and no "secret steak."  No longer our favorite evening restaurant.

 

Oh man we had two great meals in Razzle Dazzle over Thanksgiving. I tried their "secret menu" blue cheese burger the first night and enjoyed that. Especially the absolutely ridiculously best dessert ever, the Pecan Toffee Roll. I've never had anything so delicious for dessert.  Then we did Thanksgiving Dinner in there and that was awesome. 

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I had a steak in The Wake, Pink Agave and Extra Virgin on Scarlet Lady this last week. The filet in the Wake was excellent. Both the strip steak in Extra Virgin and the rib steak in Pink Agave had nice flavor and the meat was good but both had bands of gristle running through them. You couldn't even cut through it. I brought it to the attention of the maitre d of both restaurants. You shouldn't find gristle that bad in prime meat cuts. Razzle Dazzle was so underwhelming last night I will never consider them for dinner again. Poor service and not a great selection. 

 

Currently sitting in Dallas and flight home has been delayed by an hour. So it will be after 9pm before I get to Colorado Springs.

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Chiming in to confirm that The Wake is improved (including the filet). Service was also moving a bit faster. 

EV strip steak is still fantastic, although I did get a bit of the gristle mentioned above.

Razzle Dazzle's dinner menu is more incoherent than it's ever been, and I sent feedback about that. (All I remember from dinner there is a lot of rubbery chicken.) 

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6 hours ago, AlyssaJames said:

Chiming in to confirm that The Wake is improved (including the filet). Service was also moving a bit faster. 

EV strip steak is still fantastic, although I did get a bit of the gristle mentioned above.

Razzle Dazzle's dinner menu is more incoherent than it's ever been, and I sent feedback about that. (All I remember from dinner there is a lot of rubbery chicken.) 

Out service at The Wake was A LOT faster on our last Valiant trip than the previous one.  And yes, the steak  at The Wake was much improved.  I don't love their sides, but it was all much better.

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On 12/11/2023 at 8:36 AM, AlyssaJames said:

Razzle Dazzle's dinner menu is more incoherent than it's ever been, and I sent feedback about that. (All I remember from dinner there is a lot of rubbery chicken.) 

Amen to the rubbery chicken. I had to order gluten free and I had wanted to order the Lamb Shank. The waiter came back and said it wasn't gluten free but their "fried chicken" was gluten free if they left off the biscuit. This according to the chef. Two small pieces of chicken, one leg and I think, a thigh. It's not marked GF and I seriously don't think it was. I peeled the skin off and ate what little rubbery meat was there. Then went to the Galley for real food.

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20 minutes ago, Wildcatllamas said:

I peeled the skin off and ate what little rubbery meat was there.

 

Yep, this is exactly what I was talking about. I really just wanted some protein for that meal, because I wanted to get what I remember being an amazing apple dessert, but service was also really slow and I think we finally gave up and got ice cream or something. 

A friend also got the (chicken wing? something?) appetizer and it was the same deal, you could barely pry any meat off them. 

I was a big fan of RD when one could get the loaded tots and 'secret' steak for dinner. 🙂

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