April 2016 - 4 Night Western Caribbean (Tampa Roundtrip) Cruise on Brilliance of the Seas
WOW! Who doesn't love a cruise?! My wife and I just returned from our Royal Caribbean cruise on the Brilliance of the Seas out of Tampa on 4/18-22/2016. Having cruised with Royal Caribbean several times before we were sure this trip would be equally amazing especially since our port of call was Cozumel, Mexico; check that off the bucket list.
The revitalization of the ship, Brilliance of the Seas, was stunning and the entire staff was awesome. Unfortunately Royal Caribbean really missed the mark with the food - AWFUL - cafeteria food for fine dining! Room Service: Breakfast- 30min early - YEA... only cold & flavorless. The Danish appeared to have been left over from the day before. The scrambled eggs were a flavorless ice-cream scoop mound of yuk. By the way, no amount of salt and/or pepper can fix cold (powdered?!) eggs...believe me we tried.
Buffet Breakfast: Not bad but nothing special...again the eggs left ALOT to be desired although the eggs from the “eggs cooked to order” looked good if I felt like waiting and waiting and waiting.
Lunch Buffet: Standard lunch fare....probably better than breakfast but nothing memorable except the self-serve ice cream. Park Cafe: Thankful for a go to spot for a quick snack "after-hours"- oh wait... that was only till 10:30pm. Guess that explained why I saw so many guests squirreling food away to their cabins. Aside from that...snacks, pizza, and sandwiches were adequate.
Minstrel Dining: THIS IS WHERE IT WENT FROM BAD TO WORSE. Ever since I can remember, one of the highlights of cruising was the food; specifically the main event-dinner. I gotta hand it to the wait staff...really on top of their game. It's just a shame they have such a poor product to work with. Many of the entree items featured were simply leftovers from the Windjammer lunch buffet or at best the same food prepared again for dinner with a slight variation and better presentation. Two specific items topped the list of worst of worst for us- the chicken marsala and the seafood medley were complete failures. Mrs. Paul’s, Gorton's & Tyson have better or comparable products. So disappointing. We both felt like the bulk of the dinner entrees were essentially cafeteria food in a fine dining environment-and many of our fellow cruisers relayed the same sentiment even going so far as to advise others ahead of their meal of what NOT to order...sad, just sad.
Bartenders: Not the most jovial bunch but who can blame them; so overworked it seemed they could barely look up.
Regrettably this cruise was to be the benchmark for a future family cruise in February and it really has left a very poor taste in our mouths. No comps, coupons or refunds are being solicited, just needed for you to be aware of why you will not be seeing us for repeat business anytime soon.