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Coastal Kitchen " Meh"?


Eddy
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Last night on Caribbean blog live Youtube,  Matt stated his opinion on the dining experience in the Coastal Kitchen as "meh" , Yet he continually raves about the cooking table at Izumi/Hibachi   Thoughts?  agree? disagree?

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I am not a huge fan of the CK.  I love it for the convenience (especially for breakfast) and there are a couple of menus that we like but for the most part, I can take it or leave it.  The location, convenience, views and slower pace (usually) are the big pluses for the CK.  The food itself is marginal (IMO).

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We've only sailed once on a ship with a CK. I really enjoyed breakfast in CK, especially the chorizo and egg flatbread. The food was good and still warm, if not hot, when it came to the table. The same cannot be said for the MDR's sit down breakfast. We only ate dinner the first night in there because we had the UDP. Everyone raves about the filet, so we decided to try it out. Plus, we wanted to see if we liked it enough to eat in there again during the sailing. The filet was excellent. In fact, it was the best filet we had all week to include Chops and 150 Central Park. However, I'm not on the "everything needs truffles/truffle oil" bandwagon. I don't like them and think they have a petrochemical flavor. The truffle potatoes permeated the bottom of the steak to the point that I couldn't eat a full slice and had to cut it off. DW on the other hand, absolutely loved it. They did bring me some regular potatoes which were delicious. I know next time to order the filet w/o the truffle potatoes. We also tried lunch one afternoon and it was good. Same as breakfast... food was hot when it came to the table. 

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Only did CK twice so far on Odyssey and I did really enjoy it. We opted for it for boarding day lunch but really only had salads and dessert as we weren't settled enough to be fully hungry. Both were delicious. Then we did it once more when we had an early show that conflicted with the MDR my time and again really delicious. I'm also not a huge fan of truffles since they are in the mushroom family and I don't like mushrooms much but the pasta I got with it was very yummy and truly the hot food was a blessing after lots of other options being heat-lamp warm.

 

My mom - the strange person she is - was convinced the CK water was better than any other venue on the ship. Lol

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To each their own.  For my family CK > MDR.  We ate CK for every Breakfast, Lunch on Sea days and Dinner except for our 3 specialty restaurant dinner reservations.

That said service was fantastic since we were there so much which contributed to our positive reviews and experience.  

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On 2/15/2022 at 9:20 AM, WAAAYTOOO said:

I am not a huge fan of the CK.  I love it for the convenience (especially for breakfast) and there are a couple of menus that we like but for the most part, I can take it or leave it.  The location, convenience, views and slower pace (usually) are the big pluses for the CK.  The food itself is marginal (IMO).

CK is usually filled to capacity, and if you dont make reservations you won't be seated. As these are for suite guests( who normally have cruised  with Royal in the past) it seems to be a preference for dining.  I like the fact that everything is cooked to order. It arrives quite quickly and hot. The servers always do a good job to recommend what is popular and good on the menu.  Like MDR, if you dont like any particular selection , you can alway have another.  ie filet/lobster., whatever.  Wine is complimentary of course as well and I always have a  nice coffee and digestif ,also complimentary .  I have cruised very recently (6 times) in the last few months and in speaking with the concierge, the CK went through some changes with regards to quality.  I even spoke to the head chef on board, and he claims CK is the best you can get on the ship. The beef is prime. I think the MDR is select or standard.  The menu switches up daily, with a few items repeated that are popular.  The views , the service and total ambiance is my preference as well and usually very few children if any.  

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We are JS guests and have limited experience with CK. 

What we discovered was the food was pretty good but the service was exceptional.     Our server made recommendations and even brought us some of his favorite "off menu" items to try.   Very tasty and we appreciated the "above and beyond" hospitality.

I think Matt has stated numerous times on the podcast that he really enjoys the sushi and hibachi at Izumi, so it makes sense he prefers it over CK.

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There is an inherent problem with public food reviews these days.  The problem is that because of the internet and wide accessibilities to sites like this one, everyone becomes a food critic.  This is not to say you shouldn't have an opinion, but I have read and trusted too many reviews (Yelp, and others) and felt the exact opposite of many of these reviews.  

Guess my point is, I hope that everyone continues to share opinions, but I also hope that new cruisers (or cruisers new to RCCL, etc.) are still willing to try and explore for themselves.  I would rather state an opinion that is specific to my taste and leave it open for others to try, than try to use loaded words and phrases to deter others from trying.

BTW-never eaten at CK, but it is already on my list to try when I get on board!

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26 minutes ago, CruisingNewb said:

There is an inherent problem with public food reviews these days.  The problem is that because of the internet and wide accessibilities to sites like this one, everyone becomes a food critic.  This is not to say you shouldn't have an opinion, but I have read and trusted too many reviews (Yelp, and others) and felt the exact opposite of many of these reviews.  

Guess my point is, I hope that everyone continues to share opinions, but I also hope that new cruisers (or cruisers new to RCCL, etc.) are still willing to try and explore for themselves.  I would rather state an opinion that is specific to my taste and leave it open for others to try, than try to use loaded words and phrases to deter others from trying.

BTW-never eaten at CK, but it is already on my list to try when I get on board!

With mountains shared on social media,I think that expert reviews are essential. I wonder how chef Ramsay would rate cruise food? Some may argue that most restaurant-goers these days prefer Google, Yelp and Instagram for quick points about the menu and ambiance, and care less about the quality, preparation method and historical context of the food itself. Social media has changed the nature of food criticism. Unlike food critics, public online reviews can state whether civilian diners found a meal to be simply good or bad, without necessarily explaining, or even understanding, why those opinions were formed. In other cases, online reviews act as a quick overview of the restaurant’s menu offerings, service and atmosphere, often relying on photos without any written expert assessment of the actual food. Everybody thinks they can write about food—and they often don’t have the background. I have found it difficult to find "expert" or professional reviews  for cruise ships in general. I checked "cruise critic" forum on this , and most of the positive reviews were for the luxury lines. Royals only favourable mention was the Italian burger at Jamie Olivers. Go figure.    I personally enjoy the variety, and enjoy many things on board that I don't make at home...I don't have lobster, escargot, Beef Wellington, etc at home, but I certainly enjoy it on a cruise where I don't have to spend a fortune on groceries, cooking, etc.

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5 hours ago, BrianAlt said:

I wouldn't go so far as to say, "meh!"  But I understand the sentiment.  I think it's good, but it's not specialty restaurant good.  I appreciate the more personalized service.  It's nice having a private dining space.  I enjoy it, but it's not like I'm blown away.

I have yet to experience any "mind blowing" culinary  experience on ships.  Please do share...maybe Im missing something?     Most of the food is very good. 

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