Thursday, November 12, 2009

The Long Cruise: Follow Me! - the Atlantic Crossing






MS Rotterdam: The Mid Atlantic
Day Twelve: At Sea
Dining on a ship is always tricky. It isn’t as if you can switch to a different restaurant if you don’t like the ones on board. Your choices are decidedly limited.
For casual fare, the Rotterdam’s Lido is perfect. Situated on Deck 8, this is a busy, casual space, always full of light because of the glass roof in the pool area and the big windows.
While the food may not be exemplary, it is fresh and there is a great deal of choice. I have discovered the pasta bar, and anyone who knows me won’t be surprised to learn that I have developed a liking for their linguine with sauce bolognaise. There are Panini’s, oriental dishes, roast beef, fresh sushi, fruit, cheeses and, out by the pool, continual hamburgers, fajitas and pizza. Breakfasts here offer the usual things, omelettes, pancakes, waffles and French toast as well as an ‘Eggs Benedict’ station where you can order a different style each morning - smoked salmon, spinach, Canadian bacon, etc.
The big disappointment for me here, and actually this applies to the whole ship, is the coffee. It is undrinkable, made from liquid coffee stuff that doesn’t even smell like coffee. There is a coffee bar near the library that makes passable espresso and cappuccinos, but it is expensive. When you are coffee aficionados as Bob and I are, this is something that you really miss.
The formal dining room, “La Fontaine“, is a beautiful room with white table cloths and fresh flowers. The food is pretty consistently good , with a significant failure in their Lobster Thermidor which was inedible. Portions are on the small side, which is good, especially when you are consuming so much so often on a cruise, and the plating is very nice. I like the fact that there is always fresh fruit and a very good cheese board for dessert.
High tea is served in La Fontaine every day at three, and a light meal is available every night from eleven to midnight. Haven’t tried either of these yet.
Tonight we met friends in the Ocean Bar where there is a nice string quartet each evening. We had champagne, then went to dinner in La Fontaine, which was a celebration of French cuisine.
All of this is even more reason for me to make my daily visit to the gym for my five K’s on the treadmill.

No comments: