Day Three Aboard the Celebrity Century; Discovery Day

The Mob Moves
The Mob Moves

Day three aboard the Celebrity Century was a day of discovery. Did you know that they have shows and entertainment on these cruise ships? Comedians, dancers, game shows…who knew, I certainly did not.

However, before we get into the shows, a cool experience for me today, I joined with what seemed like the rest of the guests aboard the Century (photos of the mob) and went for a tour of the galley (that is nautical-speak for “kitchen”). While the massive group was waiting to enter the galley the executive chef asked if there were any questions he could answer. I don’t like to be a shrinking violet so I shot my hand up into the air and next thing I knew the director of food services had a microphone in my face and I was asking the executive chef; “Why do you not purchase more ingredients in the local markets? For example, the butter on the tables is from Wisconsin. Why do you not buy local?”

Although I accept his answer, I don’t think it was very factual; he told the gathered foodies that they Celebrity has a central purchasing policy in order to control the quality of the food that they purchase.

My take on it is that they probably have a central purchasing and warehousing operation because the scale of their central purchasing power is better leveraged to save money for the organization. However, I do accept that their belief in presenting quality ingredients to the guests aboard their ships is a sincere belief.

Which takes us to our dinner. Not our first or second early supper but our official six o’clock sit down in the Grand Restaurant with our Japanese lady friends.

When I am at home I find it difficult to cook a steak perfectly. Yes, it is true; I am not a barbecue master. So when I am out and I see steak on the menu, especially the daily fresh sheet, I like to order steak. Last night my travel companion and I both ordered the sirloin strip steak, cooked medium rare.

My steak was tough but “okay”.

Sirloin Steak
Sirloin Steak

(photo of my dinner) Not good, not bad enough to send back. However, the steak on my travel companion’s plate was so tough that he could not cut it with his steak knife.

What happened next was noteworthy. We called over our waiter who promptly recommended a substitute meal that he thought would be more to our liking. Can you believe it, that piece of meat was also as tough as you can get!

Now, keep in mind that we did not complain about the meal in order to get out of paying the bill or to get something for nothing (we realize the meals are all included in the fare). We wanted them to know that something had failed in their system.

Next thing we know, the restaurant maître d and the executive chef are at our table attempting to make things right! They apologized every which way to Sunday while adding in that nobody else had complained about their steaks that evening. That made me wonder if they were thinking we were not justified in complaining and that perhaps we just did not know what a good steak is really like.

We accepted their apologies, knowing that systems occasionally do fail, and prepared to move on. As we were walking out of the restaurant the maître d told us that he was personally going to see that there was a filet mignon (not on the menu or the daily special sheet) for both us for our next meal in the Grand Restaurant.

The lesson? The quality system failed Celebrity but the safety system, the PEOPLE they have in place made everything right. I can assure you, we left the Grand Restaurant as happy customers. Cudos to the people who are the fact of Celebrity.

I will leave the entertainment and game show stories to another blog post. I will leave this seed of a question for you; have you ever played the newly-wed game where the host separates husband and wife and asks them questions about each other and then brings them back together to answer those questions? Watching that game made me stay up late wondering how my Sweetheart would answer questions about me. Hmmmm…






3 responses to “Day Three Aboard the Celebrity Century; Discovery Day”

  1.  Avatar

    Sounds like the meat Chef had a bad day …. it is not always easy to get a steak to the table exactly as the customer wanted BUT it is possible .. I grew up in my parents restaurant so I do have some experience of cooking a steak.

    1. marilyn Avatar

      Oops sorry forgot to put my name to that post.

      1. Stacey Avatar

        Thanks Marilyn, every other meal has been extraordinary so we are not too concerned. You are correct, it was a one off bad day for the meat chef. Last night I had venison which was wonderful.