As part of its ongoing effort to keep its culinary offerings fresh, Carnival Cruise Line is revamping the menus for several of its specialty dining venues and reintroducing Baked Alaska across the fleet.
The menus for Carnival’s steakhouses, Cucina del Capitano family style Italian restaurants, and delis, as well as main dining room breakfast offerings, have undergone a transformation with a variety of new items “reflecting lighter ingredients, updated preparation techniques and exquisite presentation to keep pace with changing palates.”
Baked Alaska – a classic dessert made of cake and ice cream topped with merengue – is also being reintroduced after several years with uniformed waiters performing the time-honoured tradition of parading the tasty confection throughout the dining room prior to service.
The updated steakhouse menus, currently available on three ships, offer appetizers such as Iced and Smoked Fresh Oysters with Apple Mignonette; Tuna Tartare with Yuzu Sphere and Avocado “Leche de Tiger”; Risotto with Crab, Mushroom and Brown Butter, and Heritage Berkshire Pork Belly with Apple Walnut Preserve. These complement a selection of USDA prime steaks, including new items such as an A-5 Wagyu steak and lighter fare like Farmhouse Chicken with Roasted Honey Vinegar and Dover Sole Pan-Seared with Lemon Potato-Mousseline and Shallot Emulsion. Four additional ships are expected to get the new menus early this year.
The new menu for Cucina del Capitano reflects the diversity of Italy’s culinary regions, with dishes like Branzino Al Forno in Crosta Dorata with tomatoes, stewed chickpeas, salmoriglio and mushroom bark, along with Risotto Milanese with saffron and Parmesan cheese, Grande Braciola Di Maiale – a tomahawk pork chop with fennel pollen, shallots and crispy sage – and Costina Di Manzo Con Porcini with salsa verde and young tomato bruschetta. House-made burrata – an Italian favourite made with mozzarella and cream and distinguished by its rich buttery flavour – has been added to menus as well, with classic Italian favourites like chicken Parmesan, meatballs and fried calamari also available. The new Cucina del Capitano menus are currently on four ships – Carnival Magic, Carnival Vista, Carnival Breeze and Carnival Sunshine.
Breakfast menus in the main dining rooms are just as varied with options such as avocado toast; a Breakfast Bowl featuring kale, spinach, faro wheat berries, sesame seeds, feta cheese, raspberries and a sunny side up egg; and fresh-baked Broccoli and Cheddar Egg Frittata. There’s also a Broken Egg Sandwich served panini-style with fried eggs, bacon, cheddar, greens and hash browns; and a “Breakfast Board” with a soft boiled egg, house-made yogurt, seasonal jam, baby lettuce salad, pastrami, and grilled sour dough bread. Thus far, 12 ships feature the popular new breakfast items with the balance of the fleet expected to receive the new menus by mid-2018.
The line’s delis have undergone a dramatic change, as well, with an updated design and host of new choices, including seven sandwiches such as meatball, buffalo chicken, and The Cubano with roasted pork, ham, pickles, mustard and Swiss cheese, along with Southwest chicken, falafel and turkey wraps.
Carnival is also re-branding its 24-hour pizzerias to Pizzeria del Capitano offering five kinds of hand-tossed, thin-crusted pies – from Margherita and pepperoni to artisan-style quattro formaggio, mushroom, and prosciutto.