Cruise & Ferry Review - Spring/Summer 2024

Perfectly seasoned Amber Hickman explores how cruise and ferry lines are elevating the dining experience and providing guests with high-quality ingredients, menus and more English author Virginia Woolf once wrote: “one cannot think well, love well, sleep well if one has not dined well.” Certainly, food is an essential part of life, but it is also an important factor most people consider when choosing where to travel. The dishes, the quality and even the setting for their meals are all important parts of ensuring a long-lasting positive impression is made. According to the World Food Travel Association’s State of the Industry: Food and Beverage Tourism in 2024 report: “we do not want to sit in a cafe or restaurant that looks like one where we came from, being offered food and drinks that look and taste like ones we can get at home.” The same is no different for cruisegoers, and every guest is seeking a drink and dining experience that is not only high-quality, but memorable too. This means that cruise and ferry lines alike face the challenge of ensuring their food and beverage offerings are of a standard and originality that sticks with their guests and encourages them to return for another trip in the future. Many passenger ship operators take inspiration from the locations they operate in, aiming to use fresh local ingredients to design menus with highquality dishes for their guests. Estonian ferry operator Tallink Group, for example, has drawn on the culinary traditions of Estonia’s islands – particularly Saaremaa – to develop a five-course tasting menu for the Gourmet restaurant onboard Baltic Queen and the Bon Vivant restaurant both onboard Silja Serenade and Silja Symphony. The ‘Inspired by Estonian Islands’ menu was designed by Baltic FEATURE “One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well” Virginia Woolf 136