July 2014 - Carnival Elation to Caribbean - Western
My wife and I just got back from a cruise on the Carnival "Elation". We left the port of New Orleans and went on a 5 day cruise with stops in Progresso, Mexico and Cozumel, Mexico. I want to say that the staff was very friendly, helpful and considerate, as well as personable. Our "stateroom" as they call it was adequate and well maintained, although more than one plug in would have been appreciated.
This was our first cruise ever and we looked forward to it with great anticipation. All in all it was pretty good except for one major draw back. The food. This may shock some people, needless to say we were as well. We had been told by previous cruise goers that the food was always great. I cannot speak for other ships, or the taste buds of other passengers, but my wife and i thought it was absolutely terrible. By terrible I mean it was cheap, small portions, with little to no flavor. Bland is the only way I can describe it.
Let me say that I am not that hard to please, so to put it in perspective, a place like Golden Corral serves food that is far and away better than we had on the ship. My wife and I quit the designated dinner after the second night. The second night was of course the "formal night" with shrimp and lobster option, which is what I ordered. My lobster was tiny, providing 3 smallish bites, and with my 3 shrimp added up to an entree with a grand total of 6 bites. Ok, my mistake, there were the two small sprigs of brocolli as well. Not only was everything cheap made and had no flavor, the wait staff kept using their attitudes and accents (everyone is foreign) to make it seem like we were delving into the grandest depths of fine dining. I just couldn't take it anymore. Later in the week we met others that we had eaten with there and they too said they had abandoned it.
The next night I ate at the buffet in the "Tiffanys" area. I remember waiting in line and a young teenage boy standing next to me made the comment that he hoped they were cooking tonight. That everything so far had been "fake". That what they were serving as "steak", wasnt steak. I knew exactly what he meant. In the buffet that evening they were serving "blackened" chicken as well as steak. Neither of which had any flavor at all. Only by the texture could you even tell it was meat, with hardly a hint of anything to tell you what kind. The fact they called the chicken "blackened" was laughable.
From then on it was a lot of room service and sandwiches. Yep, thats what I want to do, go on a cruise and eat sandwiches. Even the breakfast was bad. Powdered eggs, pancakes that tasted like they were frozen and reheated. Even the sausage had no flavor!
Our next trip will not be a cruise, at least on Carnival. If you can, get to Cozumel, its truly beautiful!