Mickey and Mini Mouse have ears but Paul Bonarrigo has a red hat. Both Icons created a stir on the dockwhile we waited for embarkation. Paul nor I really knew what to expect except that we would be doing staff training and/or guest seminars eight times in 7 days and that Mickey’s ship promised magic. What we found exceeded all our expectations.
The staff which comes from over 60 countries was extraordinary in their hospitality. No matter where we dined on the ship they knew our names. There were three restaurantsthat offered uniquely thematic menu’s each night. Each night we rotated to a different restaurant. Amazingly, our servers and restaurant manager rotated with us. Pastry Chef Brenton told us that his team produced 9000 desserts each day. There were 2300 passengers on the ship. (You can do the math – yum) He also shared that they baked 5-6,000 cookies per day.
Our favorite restaurant was Palo, a fine dining Italian concept. Chef Nickolas from the US created dishes delicious to eat and beautiful to photograph. Some of our favorites were the tableside antipasti trolley, the Portobello capped risotto appetizer, the crusted rack of lamb, seared tuna, and the desserts, of course.
With each meal we enjoyed Messina Hof wines that were featured on the ship – Messina Hof Pinot Grigio, Chardonnay, Moscato, Merlot, and Cabernet Sauvignon. In addition to the fabulous wine and food pairings, Paul and I had the opportunity of sharing Messina Hof wines with the guests at wine tastings each day at sea.
We recommend you take a cruise and don’t miss these highlights: Palo restaurant, Walt Disney Theater productions, The Art of Entertaining cooking classes, Pirate’s deck party and fireworks, and the wine tastings. Please thank them for serving Messina Hof wines.