Saturday, January 2, 2016

Escape to Garden Cafe

Norwegian Escape
Casual Dining


Norwegian Escape complimentary dining options include three main dining rooms, a help-yourself buffet and a variety of casual caf├ęs, grills and on-the-go choices. Plus, the Main Dining Rooms offer a menu that changes daily.

We selected the Garden Cafe for our welcome aboard lunch.  There were other dining options open, but since we had our first general session meeting about an hour after boarding, we wanted something quick.

Garden Cafe is located on Deck 16 aft.   There are many different stations from which you can choose your favorites or try something new. 

Breakfast  Buffet

Most mornings you'd find us in the Garden Cafe before our first general session.   Selections in the ready-made category included eggs, waffles, pancakes, cereal, bacon and sausage.  You could have an omelet made to order if you liked.  Check out our photo album for some more pictures.  Escape - Garden Cafe

Help Yourself

You don't have to wait for someone to server you coffee, juice, ice tea, or water unless you wanted to wait.  Central to each group of tables were silverware wrapped in napkins along with some condiments.   There was a selection of condiments on the buffet station as well, including my favorite HP Sauce.

We always love the baked bread and Norwegian Escape's Bakery didn't disappoint with a nice selection at each meal.   You could also grab a piece of fruit or two for your meal or later in the day.

Walk Around the Buffet

Some common phrases heard in the Garden Cafe:   "Where did you get that?"  "I didn't see that." 

There is a tendency to grab a plate and start filling it up at the first buffet station you see.  I see that behavior on all cruises, and am guilty of it as well at times.   My suggestion to you is before digging into the selections, walk around and get an idea of your options.   Then go back and start filling up your plate.

The picture above is a good example for why you might want to do that.   Near the entrances of the buffet you'll find a soft-serve ice cream machine.   You might be tempted to have that for dessert and if that is something you like, you won't be disappointed.  But, if you walk a little further, you'll find one of the crew serving dishes of ice cream from the selections of the day.    It's like going to your favorite ice cream parlor back home.  You can make your own sundae if you like as well.

Review of Garden Cafe

There was a decent selection of food at each meal (breakfast, lunch, and dinner).   We were a little disappointed with some of the items, however.   The scrambled eggs weren't cooked to our liking, perhaps because they needed to stay under the lights for extended period of time.  We like crispy bacon, which wasn't always available.  Overall, we were happy with the variety and quality of the food.  Food is so subjective, but we think most people would find something they would like to eat.

The dining room itself is a bit hard to navigate at times - especially in prime times.   There are some wooden barriers that in our opinion should be removed.   They block the natural flow of traffic.  On the positive side there are a number of different seating arrangements, ranging from handicap accessible tables, to high-top tables, which could accommodate any size group.

Norwegian Cruise Line is well known for Freestyle Dining.  


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Click (here) or Image to the left for more stories and photos from our conference cruise on Norwegian Escape.   Check out this brand new ship from Norwegian Cruise Line.

If you have specific questions about the ship, the itinerary, or cruising in general, we'd love to hear from you.

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