Forget reaching for your Open Table app or dealing with a busy signal to secure a table at a top-notch restaurant. As a passenger aboard Royal Caribbean’s Quantum-Class ships, you’ll have already gained access to some of the hottest chefs in the culinary industry.
Joining Quantum of the Seas and Anthem of the Seas in 2014 and 2015, respectively, are celebrity chefs Michael Schwartz, Jamie Oliver and Devin Alexander, each with a unique culinary concept all their own.
Oliver brings his popular restaurant, Jamie’s Italian, to the high seas for the first time — introducing cruise passengers to his signature style of healthful, approachable food that’s fresh and ethically sourced. Devin Alexander, of Biggest Loser fame, packs the menu of her eponymous eatery Devinly Decadence at Solarium Bistro with dishes all under 500 calories.
And for the first time, Royal Caribbean will feature a gastropub at sea courtesy of Schwartz’s Michael’s Genuine Pubs — a pioneer in American cruise line dining. In addition to helming his signature restaurant, the Miami-based chef will be the Quantum Experience Advisor for Culinary, weighing in on everything from room service and the overall dining program to the creation of seasonal tasting menus and the development of food and beverage pairings for guests.
With so many options and meal times to choose from, Onboard breaks down the cruise ships’ top culinary offerings from Quantum’s culinary heavyweights.
The lowdown: Jamie Oliver’s eponymous Italian restaurant serves up an assortment of rustic dishes made with seasonal ingredients. Guests have their choice of charcuterie, pastas and hearty, carnivore-pleasing mains.
Dress code: Whether you’re popping in for lunch for dinner, dress code is always smart casual.
What you’re ordering: Baked chestnut mushrooms served with smoked mozzarella and “music bread,” paper-thin, yeast-free bread (a favorite of the British chef); fried garlicky prawns over linguine; and a chargrilled rib eye steak.
Michael’s Genuine Pub
The lowdown: James Beard Award-winning chef Michael Schwartz heads up the cruise industry’s first gastropub on the high seas.
Pairing tips: Just about everything on the menu complements the chef’s own craft ale, Michael’s Genuine Home Brew, though a number of other craft beers and house-made cocktails, as well as bourbon flights, find their way on the menu.
What you’re ordering: Crispy pig ears, pan-fried onion dip with thick-cut potato chips; peanut butter pie-in-a-jar; and a banana toffee panini are decadent and totally addictive.
Devinly Decadence at Solarium Bistro
The lowdown: A waistline-friendly menu — with all dishes less than 500 calories — created by The Biggest Loser chef, Devin Alexander.
Breakthrough diets: Solarium Bistro will be Royal Caribbean’s first low-calorie eatery.
Calorie counting: You won’t need to worry about a little imbibing getting in the way of your weight loss goals. With all cocktails clocking in at 100 calories or less, booze (almost) does a body good. Bottoms up!