On the second night of our recent cruise aboard the Grand Princess our kids had an evening activity that they wanted to take part in so my Sweetheart and I seized the opportunity and made reservations for the Crown Grill – a Princess Cruises specialty restaurant.
The Crown Grill is a steakhouse with a $25 “cover charge” which is a clever way of saying the food in this restaurant is not included in your basic fare and is going to cost you. To be honest, at $25 a person (plus an automatic $10 gratuity), this is still a pretty awesome value.
The service was very, very professional and the meals, mine more so than my Sweetheart’s, was very close to perfect.
We started our meal with a selection of appetizers including a salad with goat cheese, heirloom cherry tomatoes and a few bite size pieces of beet. The baby spinach leaves were wonderfully fresh and incredibly tender. A win.
We also had pan seared Pacific scallops. The preparation of these scallops would have made Chef Gordon Ramsay proud – they were seared on the outside and perfectly translucent inside. Tender as all get out. Yep, another big win.
We also shared a big bowl of black and blue onion soup. Exquisite. A perfect mass of onions cooked down into a heap of sweet and pure goodness. The deep, flavourful broth was capped with a chunk of baguette with melted roquefort on top of it. Exquisite. Wonderful flavours. Another swing and another hit.
For my main course I chose to go into beast-mode. This is an award winning steak house so I saw no point in trying a fish or pork chop dish. No, it was steak night for me.
It was 22 ounces of my favourite steak – the Porterhouse on my plate for this meal. The best of the sirloin and the filet all cooked bone-in.
And I’ll say right now, although it was massive, it truly was spectacular. I asked for it to be medium rare and it was perfectly medium rare. Attractive grill tracks on the top and a deep pink, not red, on the inside. Perfection.
When eating a steak of this magnitude it is important to be strategic. So I save the filet side of the t-bone to eat after I have eaten the larger sirloin side of the steak. That way when I’m starting to feel full (and yes, even I will start to feel full when eating a 22 ounce steak!) I have the most succulent and tenderest part of the steak left. Strategy. The Porterhouse was spectacular.
As side dishes to the steak I chose the grilled asparagus which appeared to be more steamed than grilled. It was nice and did not detract from the star of the show.
A small heap of pan fried mushrooms was also squeezed onto my plate.
The only real miss for our dinner at the Crown Grill was the steak that my Sweetheart ordered. Being someone with a much more petite appetite than me, she opted for the ultra popular 8 ounce Filet Mignon.
It was, of course tender and tasty. Just as I like my steak prepared, Sweetheart likes her’s medium rare.
The first half of the steak was medium rare but the second half of the steak looked like it could have gotten up and walked off the plate it was so rare. The odd thing is when I told the server that her steak was much more rare than medium rare, he didn’t respond in any way. He just said thanks, took the plate away and that was the end of it.
Now before you say we should’ve done “this or that”, understand that we had both eaten as much as we wanted and had enjoyed each and every bite so there was no need to ask him to comp the meal or anything like that. I was just surprised by the lack of response to what could have been a real problem during our meal.
I am confident that if we had pressed the issue or even if we had requested that the steak be better prepared the server and the grill staff would have obliged.
Overall, the meal we had in the Crown Grill aboard the Grand Princess was a wonderful experience. Fabulous service, attention to detail in the service and a perfectly prepared steak for me and a not-so-perfectly prepared steak for my Sweetheart all added up to a wonderful evening for me and a sort of wonderful evening for my Sweetheart.