We are a long time Carnival customer. Many, many enjoyable cruises. I hate to say this but I think with our last cruise on the Carnival liberty it is time to move on and hopefully upward. Embarkation was a piece of cake. Arrived at the pier at 12:30 and we were on board by 1:15. Our cabin was ready by 1:30. Aft cabin Cat. 9C 6483. Great room, fantastic deck. It slept three of us as my daughter (21) came along.The room steward went and got us one more deck and lounge chair so we had three of each.
Lots of fun and excitement going on. Typical Carnival which is good. Everyone smiles.
Went to dinner in the silver dining room. Menu was kind of boring but we tried the Caesar salad 1 chicken breast, 1 shrimp and 1 salmon. The Caesar was boring. No taste in the dressing at all. I asked the waiter about the taste and why there wasn't any Anchovies on the salad and he said the the Anchovies are now in the dressing............strange as there was no flavor in their dressing. Anyway, on to the dinner. The dinner was luke warm as it was sitting under covered plates while we finished our salads. They used to clear the table and then go get your dinner so it was hot and fresh. Anyway. the chicken was dry and tasteless, the salmon was dry and just okay and the shrimp? Have you ever seen shrimp that were straight? These shrimp were about the size of a link sausage, completely straight and they did have a tail on them so I figured they weren't fake shrimp. Anyway. they were barely warm and tasteless. Carnival has never had this poor quality of food in the main dining room before. Very disappointed. On to dessert. How do you mess up Creme Brulee? The desserts looked perfect, nice hardened sugar crust on top. But first bite told us something. The flavor was there but the texture was like cottage cheese. There wasn't a second bite.
So after dinner we went for a stroll to see what they were serving on the Lido deck. Surprise. There was our chicken, salmon and Shrimp!! So now I guess what you get in the main dining room is Lido deck on fine china! This is how they move you up to Harry's Steakhouse.
The next morning for breakfast we checked out the Lido to see what they offered.
Not much. Scrambled eggs, the sausage looked like the microwave heat and serve things you find in the frozen food aisle. The oatmeal was watery. No hash browns, no bacon. The pastries were better than I remembered from last time. What to do? We found the omelet bar that made a great omelet except you waited behind 20 people each time you went. The also had a breakfast burrito bar which I would give 4 stars to. After the first day we had coffee, juice,Lox,cream cheese and bagels delivered to our room. We did go to the main dining room once for breakfast. the food was very good but the portions were very small. The omelet was about 1 egg, a little bigger than a deck of cards. The hash browns were two Tatar Tots, and the bacon was two pieces. lots of coffee and juice though.
So what to do for dinner again? We went to Harry's Steak house. Great meal, fantastic service. I would give the food an 8.5 out of 10 and the service a 9.5. It was so good we booked it for 3 more nights. Harry's I highly recommend.
During the day we tried the deli. Great sandwich. I had a Rubin there 3 different times! Fantastic. The Sushi bar also got rave review from my daughter. Fish and chips? Just okay. Inconsistent quality. 2 out of three times the oysters were overdone on the outside and still frozen in the middle. When they got it right the food was great. Pizza? just okay. 7 pieces of pepperoni on a pizza sliced into 8 pieces. On piece per slice and someone just gets cheese. The burger joint was okay. Lots and lots of condiments helped as the burgers were 80/20% meat/fat so they had about as much flavor as McDonald's. Still very edible but they could have been so good.
We found a place that sold cakes,cheese cakes, etc so we tried a piece of cheesecake and took it back to the room to enjoy on the deck. Huge slice. Enough for 3 people and it was only $2.50. Cake was just okay. it tasted cheap. What was even more sad as we bought the piece on Sunday and Thursday the cake was still on display with only one more slice missing. You think it would have been stale by then.
The Mongolian Grill was just okay. Edible but nothing that made you hurry back for seconds. So all in all I put the food on the lido and main dining room a step or two below eating at The Golden Corral or Old Country Buffet back home. It wasn't even close to being first class much less third class. I have eaten at the two previously mention restaurants many a time and their food is perfectly acceptable. I feel Carnival is pinching pennies here and there and their standards have taken a tumble. Like I said Harry's was great but it added $400 to our cruise for 4 dinners for a party of 3.
So now I sit back and as i read this I did have a great cruise. The boat and staff were wonderful. The food just made it feel cheap. My whole family agreed it is time to move on. If the cruise line has a steak house it must mean they went cheap on the Lido or Main Dining room so we will avoid those. Someone wants photos of the aft cabin with the wrap around deck just request some and I will post them or post a link. It slept three comfortable The same cabins on decks 7 and 8 only sleep 2 go figure.