MDR menus

How do you feel about extra cost items on the MDR menu?  Do you like the option of ordering higher priced items in the MRD?  Would you rather go to a specialty restaurant to dine on that item?  Should the MDR menu offer higher cost dishes?

Tags: food Cruise line menus

17 Answers

I probably would not order higher priced items in the MDR.  I figure that the cruise is costing me enough money as it is.  If I really want to celebrate and eat something extra special, I'd dine in a specialty restaurant.  However, some passengers may feel differently.  I just hope that by offering the higher priced dishes, it doesn't limit my other choices. 

When did the issue of special ordering in the MDR come up?

I was discussing with my son yesterday about the concern that the quality of services on some cruise lines was declining, and that other service that used to be free are now an additional charge. If this is going to be the norm, then I can see the only free option would be the buffet or the pizza/burger stand. I would hope that the price of the cruise will be reduced to entice the cruisers to book into the special restaurants.

Interesting development.

I have only scene the extra pay MDR items on Carnival.  They have the steak house main courses for and extra $ 20.00,  but not the steak house appetizers or desserts.   

If I am paying extra I would just pay the $ 35.00 and go up to the steak house for the full meal, the extra service and the ambiance of the steak house.   I also wounder if the MDR chefs will cook the steak as good as the specialty chefs in the steak house?

I'm also old school cruising and believe that meals should be included in the price of the cruise and should be very good to great food in the MDR.  The MDR should have table clothes and good service,  I also want my chocolate on my pillow every night and free room service.

If we want to pay extra we go to the specialty restaurants. Otherwise, we order what we've already paid for. Charging in the MDR is double dipping by the cruise lines.

I have not sailed on a cruise line that has pay option on the MDR menu. I would not do it. If I am going to pay I will go to the specialty restaurant.

Specialty restaurants have become gold mines for the cruise lines that offer them. The opportunity to squeeze a few more bucks (yen, euros etc.) out of vacationers is irresistible when competition is so steep and margins so slim. I'm glad to see the option, but it doesn't excuse poor food or service in MDRs. Charging for exteas in the MDR is despicable. As passengers we're supposed to shut up and take whatever they offer, I guess. I don't see how the actual food quality between a specialty restaurant and the MDR can vary that much since they use the same provisions, vendors and suppliers. All the food's loaded and handled the same way. Does being a few meters closer to the place where the steak is being broiled make that much of a difference? I don't think so. We splurged on a fancy French meal on Norwegian and fancy cupcakes, ice cream and burger meals on Royal Caribbean. The only real difference I could find the specialty restaurants offer is the menu itself. The MDR gives you a striploin. The steakhouse gives you a choice. If you like Asian food, same deal. I still think the best food on certain ships is the Indian cuisine the crew eats. In most ports, the best food you'll eat on your cruise is OFF the ship. Here's an old MDR menu from my collection. 

 

 

I think most of you feel as I do.  If you want the higher cost dish, you go to the specialty restaurant.  I rarely do that unless my TA gives it to us as a perk.  For me, the MDR is fine.  

I rarely go for the add-on cost items in MDR unless there are no main courses that I find appealing. Even then, I'd more likely go for the chicken breast option.

There are lines where we have taken a dining package because we were looking for smaller, more intimate dining experiences. Probably the biggest reason we select dining packages is because with a lot of background noise, I have real trouble carrying on a conversation so smaller venues work better for me.

Yes, MDRs can get very noisy.  And you can wait a long time to eat.  When we sit at big tables, it can take up to 2 hours.  One time on Carnival booking last minute we were assigned 8:15pm dinner time.  We were stuck in a corner with 10 others who also booked last minute - all of us from Central Florida.  It was after 10:15 when we finally received dessert.  I was almost too tired to eat it - notice that I said almost.  Luckily we all were moved to early seating the next day.  I honestly think that they forgot about us in the corner.

 

 

 

I think the specialty restaurants are a good idea, just not in the MDR. Hopefully it is not a preliminary move by the Line to institute charges for the MDR experience.

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