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JLMoran

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JLMoran last won the day on October 25 2019

JLMoran had the most liked content!

About JLMoran

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    Official Oasis Class Denier
  • Birthday 01/23/1970

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    Northern NJ

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  1. If you have access to CK, you effectively have your own specialty restaurant with a rotating menu each night. I personally feel that once you have that, there's no reason to eat in the MDR or the WJ. And if you're in a Sky Class suite or better, you get access for breakfast and lunch, too. I haven't gotten to experience that yet, but @Lovetocruise2002 and others seem to all agree that breakfast is great as long as you're not in a rush, but lunch is nothing to write home about.
  2. Have you read all of my posts since I joined? 🤣
  3. I'll try and guess at a little more detail than @Lovetocruise2002 gave. 😉 The tl;dr summary is that, for me, the Chops filet is what I get when I go to Outback or maybe a place like Longhorn Steakhouse; pretty good, but rarely stellar. CK filet is what I get when my mom goes to the butcher and has him hand-pick a filet for her, and she has my brother cook it up medium-rare on the grill that same day with no / minimal seasoning; truly melt-in-your-mouth good, not a tough bit to be found, and rich flavor that can't be beat. Now the longer version. 😁 CK is a suites-only restaurant and has its own galley, and I'm betting that part of the difference is that their chefs are getting first choice of every single filet that gets delivered on embarkation day. They can do this, not only because they're a suites-only restaurant and have to offer the best to those guests, but because they only offer the filet on one night. True, they'll serve it two nights if it's a sailing longer than 11 days, but note how @twangster said that second filet was perceptibly not as good in his recent 11-night Anthem blog. The other difference to my palate is the seasoning they use. I happened to have both CK filet and Chops filet on the same sailing, and Chops' was very noticeably saltier than CK's. That's going to affect the cook (draws out more moisture from the meat while its cooking), as well as the final flavor. Final factor I can think of is that the CK galley is cooking for relatively few passengers at any given time, and every meal is made to order and paid close attention, so it's a lot harder to mess it up. Chops' galley is serving far more passengers at any one time, and the chefs just can't pay as close attention to every individual meal. Mistakes, even tiny ones like cooking it a bit closer to medium than medium-rare, are going to happen.
  4. I think one way to look at cruising Europe is that it's a "sampler platter"; you get a taste of a whole bunch of cities and countries, letting you figure out which countries truly appeal to you and that you want to see more of another time. As others here already noted, if it departs from a major city port like Civitavecchia, Venice, Barcelona, etc. and you were already interested in that port / region, then that's a chance for pre/post extended stay to really explore. I look at river cruising as the next stage of that -- now you're focusing on a smaller geographic region but still getting a sample of a handful of countries with more time and attention in each. I would say, though, that if you want to do a Europe cruise and have a chance to see either a lot of ports with few sea days or more "boutique" ports, then you need to be ready to sail on a smaller / older vessel that reaches those ports and offers the variety.
  5. Hey @bossdog421, IT'S CRUISE DAY!!!! Hope you and the family all have a fantastic cruise and come back with lots of great memories. Congratulations on the 10-year mark!
  6. Congrats, and glad to know your husband is better. Torn quadricep?!? OWIEEEEE! So if that one is Fezzik, where are Inigo and Vizzini hiding? Or do you instead have Westley and Buttercup? 😉
  7. Hope embarkation is smooth and the porters don't demand they take your luggage!
  8. If you’re willing to divulge, who’s who here? I figure ok to ask since you already gave out all the real names right off the bat. 😉
  9. It’s a transatlantic on Celebrity, going to Canada, Greenland, Iceland, and ending in Dublin. Royal does have one or two cruises each year that go to Iceland, typically a transatlantic / repositioning cruise for whichever Radiance class ship they had in Northern Europe. But those are typically in April / May for the ship’s repositioning to Boston for the summer season, where this cruise is in August and lined up better with family availability around school / college.
  10. Not strictly cruising related, although Denmark is a big cruise departure port for Nordic cruises and there is a group cruise going to Norway in 2021. Finland and Denmark were, once again, rated the happiest countries in the world. This video does a small dive into Nordic culture and the research behind that evaluation. It does point out of some of the pitfalls of having that kind of ranking (e.g., they've had to contend with higher-than-average suicide rates, and have worked on greatly reducing that over the last few decades), but overall it's a good watch and I found it really interesting.
  11. Yes, made with top-shelf Añejo tequila. Very tasty, way better than a garden variety margarita (even one made with Patron Silver or 1800 Reposado).
  12. Resurrecting this thread so y'all can see what I ended up getting as my first set: LeanTravel Compression Packing Cubes Luggage Organizers for Travel with Double Zipper - Set of 3 - Color Black Received as a b-day gift, and I have to say after taking a good look at them that I really like the design and construction; I had these on my "Cruise Prep" list as one of many options, and I think they might be the best of the bunch. Probably going to buy the 6-pack option on these (2 large, 2 medium, and 2 small) so that I have cubes for both the checked and carry-on suitcases. Given some of the stuff I'll be packing for the Iceland & Greenland trip (in just over 6 months now!!) -- fleece-lined chinos, mock turtlenecks and other medium-weight layers, t-shirts, dress shirts, suit... having the compression and being able to stuff more into the carry-on without busting it at the seams will definitely be a good thing! Also leaves room for the dress shoes! 😁
  13. I’d argue it’s the best in the fleet. Period.
  14. Here’s my list, and I’ve sailed on Anthem twice: Drinks: Mango and Melon ‘Rita (only available at Boleros), Baileys on the rocks with a shot of espresso added (for an after-dinner cocktail), the Royal Delight spiked coffee (Windjammer coffee bar and Cafe Two70), Dark & Stormy (only the Two70 Lounge bar has the correct ingredients), She’s a Geisha (Izumi) Food: Second (third?) vote for filet at CK on night 1, Truffle Tagliatelle entree and the arancini appetizer at Jamie’s Italian, another vote for The World dessert at Wonderland. And don’t shortchange the main dining room! Im stunned no one has mentioned their escargots. I also really like their wild mushroom soup offered one of the nights (similar to what Chops has daily), and also their seafoood risotto. Don’t forget to try the Royal Chocolate Cake! I actually liked that better than the Valrhona Chocolate Bar even though it’s a “standard” dessert option.
  15. Absolutely! Either for yourself or to share with your tablemates. I had one night where I ordered two appetizers, two entrees, two glasses of wine, and two desserts. No decision making skills required! 😂 Of course, I was in a bit of a food coma after all that, and I was giving penguins lessons in proper waddling technique...
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