I recently had the opportunity to sail from the Port of Los Angeles to Santa Barbara and down the coast to Ensenada, Mexico onboard the Ruby Princess with Princess Cruise’s annual Culinary Cruise. In this fun event, with the help of different celebrity chefs each year, the cruise line takes the opportunity to highlight the fresh culinary delights passengers can experience every time they book a cruise with Princess Cruises.

Along with former Love Boat star Jill Whelan, who played Captain Stubing’s daughter Vicki on the long-running sitcom and is now Celebrations Ambassador for Princess Cruises, I had a chance to discover the best culinary experiences both onboard and in the excursions offered at different ports of call. Come aboard… the culinary adventure is a sweet reward.

Jill Whelan (on left) played Captain Stubing’s daughter Vicki on The Love Boat. Photo by Susan Lanier-Graham

Jill Whelan (on left) played Captain Stubing’s daughter Vicki on The Love Boat. Photo by Susan Lanier-Graham

Fun Culinary Facts

So I admit it. I’m a bit of a foodie. Okay, I’m a lot foodie. I’m sort of obsessed with food. I think food defines cultures and the souls of the places I visit. I like trying new things. I don’t always like everything I try, but I’ll try just about anything once. But I am passionate about fresh food. I love knowing where my food comes from and getting to know the people who grow it or catch it. I like talking to chefs and feeling their passions. So I found all the fun facts about the culinary offerings on Princess Cruises fascinating.

Chef Curtis Stone in the kitchen on a Princess Cruises ship with some of the fresh ingredients. Photo courtesy Princess Cruises

Chef Curtis Stone in the kitchen on a Princess Cruises ship with some of the fresh ingredients. Photo courtesy Princess Cruises

As part of their “Come Back New” campaign, the cruise line has partnered with some great chefs, including celebrity chef Curtis Stone, to inspire people to find passion in their food and to excite their senses. Here are some of the fun things I discovered on my cruise:

  • Princess Cruises sources ingredients from over 40 local providers worldwide
  • The kitchens on each ship are massive and include multiple refrigeration units so everything is stored at precise temperatures — peaches at 34 degrees, onions and potatoes at 63 degrees and lemons and chili peppers at 48 degrees
  • On average there are 70 fruit varieties and 100 different vegetables on board
  • Steaks are cut by hand just hours before dinner service
  • Bread is baked within 30 minutes of being served
  • Dough is made from scratch

SHARE by Curtis Stone

In late 2015, Princess Cruises announced a collaboration with celebrity chef Curtis Stone, unveiling his first restaurant at sea, SHARE. SHARE is a unique dining experience onboard several Princess ships that features shareable meals served family style in an elegant, but comfortable setting.

Chef Curtis Stone inside SHARE. Photo courtesy Princess Cruises

Chef Curtis Stone inside SHARE. Photo courtesy Princess Cruises

As I was waiting to be seated for my dinner in SHARE, a couple left the restaurant and I asked them how they had enjoyed their meal. The woman, probably in her late 60s, hooked her arm inside her husband’s, gave him a school-girl grin and told me it was the best meal of her life. Quite a testament. Not to think it was a generational observation, a young couple, perhaps celebrating a honeymoon, came out right after them and I overheard him exclaiming, “I don’t think I’ve ever had such a great meal.” After a set-up like that, I was wondering if the meal could meet my expectations. I was pleased from the moment we were led into the comfortable space and never disappointed.

Click HERE to read the rest of the article on Travelocity.com.

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