Author Topic: Regular Cruises with kosher (ordered)  (Read 38284 times)

Offline 2035

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Re: Regular Cruises with kosher (ordered)
« Reply #100 on: August 28, 2023, 02:59:45 PM »
OK, a short update on Norwegian (NCL) standard kosher program. I just disembarked from a great 10 night/11 day cruise in Meditaranean with family of 4 (not departing from Israel). We booked several months in advance and requested kosher food.
Menu is pretty much exactly what was posted above, ( ) in that these are the options on board. Each dish is packaged separately and you can 'mix and match' - eg 3 different meats and several sides for family, then plate it yourself onto the paper plates they provide.
All meals were sourced from Borenstein, but interestingly much of it was actually manufactured in Europe under Borenstein label. I'm 99% sure it's from Langerhuize in Amsterdam based on hechsher , origin and shape of containers, but it doesn't say that - just Borenstein name. The food from Amsterdam was much better than that from US.
In terms of meals;
Bread- they ran out after first day, which is not great...had to find challot locally for second shabbat. bread on boat is mezonot rolls.
Soups - all excellent, especially chicken soup
Starters - lox very good, eggplant and hummus good, health salad average, gefilte fish excellent (from Amsterdam)
Main - from best (excellent) to worst (poor) - Rib Eye steak, Brisket, Beef Bourbignon, Turkey, Beef burger, Greek chicken, roast chicken, lasagne (miky), pineapple chicken, kung pao chicken, various fish (salmon/cod/tilapia), salisbury steak (ugh..)
Sides - OK, but a bit boring. the only starch is rice (either pillaf or basmati). Mushrooms, carrots, beans, peas all fine if nothing special
Desserts - mostly good. Our favourite was cinamon coffee crunch and assorted cookies (from amsterdam). Apple crrumb cake and brownies are fine, carrot cake adequate.
Breakfasts - I don't like reheated egg dishes, but thought other options were fine (esp blintzes and waffles) if rather sweet.

A few other notes;
1. Staff is all really excellent and really want to help. Depending on your level of kashrut they are more than happy to do whatever you ask, whether to doublewrap salmon/white fish and veggies, provide a plate of pure lox etc.
2. you can eat kosher meals in main dining room or in buffet. We generally preferred to eat in dining room as less noisy and better staff and attention, but your choice. They put aside a fixed large table for us each night which was preset with plastics and had plenty of space for empty containers
3. At night after dinner you order for all 3 meals on following day (if you want 3 meals - we went to local kosher restaurants on most days!)
4. You can't choose from full menu. They give you a printed daily menu with 3-4 breakfast options, then 2-3 options for each course in lunch and dinner. No problem to mix and match between lunch and dinner. You can order as much as you like (within reason).
5. Food is not microwaved but heated in regular oven, tastes much better than microwaved. Always fully defrosted, not even chilled.
6. Plenty of kosher options in buffet - eg cereals with OU or Manchester, jams/syrups, soft-serve and scoop ice cream (OU-D), juices/lemondes/iced tea etc
7. On shabbatot we had an ad-hoc self-arranged minyan for all tefillot, they provided meeting room for us
8. I requested permission in advance to bring grape juice, which was very useful for kiddush and havdalah

In general very enjoyable way to travel - and pretty good value, at approx USD 100 per person per day + USD 20 service including all meals + accommodation. can be less with inside cabins and/or 3 or more in a cabin, or at less peak times.
I managed to get USD 200 credit + 10 portait photos + 300 minutes internet and few others included also.

« Last Edit: August 28, 2023, 04:30:53 PM by 2035 »