Which Cruise Line Has The Best Buffet?

many passengers complain about poor food especially at the Buffet Restaurant. I was wondering which cruise line have you sailed where the buffet was good?

Tags: Cruise line has good buffet food

18 Answers

That's an interesting question for me, as I get the impression many of the larger nickel and dime lines are drifting toward increased use of their specialty and buffet style eateries and less emphasis on MDRs.

To really get an good evaluation of it all though cruisers would have to travel a lot in a short period of time using a huge variety of lines as some lines are pretty good for a while then make cuts.

Berlitz seems to have a pretty comprehensive rating system for "Food" and "Service" but they rate only the big 11. In their "buffets informal eating" category they rate Cunard #1, Princess #2, MSC #3 and HAL & NCL tied for # 4. For their overall ratings though Cunard stays #1 but Princess falls to #4 and NCL to #7. We cruise on the so called "luxury line" Regent as well but they are so small they aren't rated by Berlitz in these categories, however, we find their buffets not all that much better than HAL and Princess with the exception of service, crowding and overall quality of the dining facility, which is much better.

I feel the buffets vary from ship to ship as opposed to lines themselves. We sailed on the Jewel of the Seas and the buffet was horrendous. A few months later, we sailed on the Brilliance of the Seas and the buffet was excellent. We were told on the Brilliance that their buffet had rated #1 for the previous 4 months among the whole line. I think it has more to do with the buffet chef(s) and cooks that make the buffet. We sailed on the Caribbean Princess this past April and only went to the buffet a few times because we hated it. Some of the entrees had such a weird taste we actually brought it to managements attention. We were told it was a new Caribbean spice the chef was using. That flavor disappeared from the offerings two days later but the food at the buffet was still just OK at best. So Princess making the #2 spot here helps to prove my point.

I cruise mostly on three lines. Holland, Princess and NCL. I would rate them Holland then Princess with NCL in third.

Holland America has the best food, but, the dessert were somewhat pedestrian. This last trip on the Breakaway the buffet quality was exceptional. Even the sugar free desserts were very good. Well, that's what my wife told me anyway.

I'd say the best I have had was the Celebrity Equinox in Europe. The buffet even had Sushi at dinner time. We had late dining that trip and the kid went to the buffet at 5:00 and ate enough sushi to get my moneys worth of the trip. (Amazing how skinny kids can eat so much and not get heavy, one night he polished off 30 pieces of it and then had a full dinner 8:00)

I have not sailed on any luxury liner but I can tell you this. HAL had a wonderful buffet when I sailed on the ms. Amsterdam for the Grand Voyage. I stayed on for the next cruise through the Panama Canal. The buffet was almost the same minus a couple of extras. I think it all depends on the chef in charge.

I have found this also to be true. A couple of times we sailed on two ships with the same company. On both the embarkation buffets were minimal and disappointing to me. Then we sailed on a newer ship and the embarkation buffet was good. In this case, I think the third ship was no t only newer but larger.

i agree with you about HAL having good buffet food.

The best buffet I ever experienced was Princess a few moons ago... but that doesn't mean anything today. I agree that to rate buffets now, one has to travel a lot in a short amount of time. That said, we haven't been bowled over (npi) by any of the buffets on our most recent voyages on RC, Celebrity, or NCL.

Remember the Midnight Buffet back in the 90's ? Now that was the time of the great buffets.

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