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Simone's Guide To Ventura's Dining - Part 2

27 September 2010

Marco Pierre White

Read part 1 of this blog.

The Speciality Dining Options

During my cruise as well as dining the main dining room, I sampled the superb specialty restaurants onboard.

There are a choice of three specialty restaurants and of course I sampled all of them during my stay (purely to investigate what was on offer you understand!).

The White Room (cover charge of £20-£25)

This is the restaurant of Marco Pierre White, and it occupies a stunning location on top of the ship with the option to dine al fresco in fine weather. There are two rotating menus - each equally delicious.

It's a three course menu with a Bellini and amuse bouche thrown in as well as coffee & chocolates and the food is simply divine. The food is simple which emphasises the high quality ingredients and is beautifully presented. This is Michelin star quality at a bargain price.

Starters include: enormous grilled king prawns with herb garlic butter and béarnaise sauce, escalope of foie gras & fried egg on toasted brioche and gnocchi with porcini & artichoke. Flavours are delicate and fresh - in fact my mouth is watering as I write!

Main courses include Marco's signature Spaghetti of Lobster Americano - half the lobster in the spaghetti tomato sauce and the other alongside the pasta, grilled medallions of beef fillet with snails in garlic butter, rack of lamb and supreme of halibut with citrus fruits, olive oil, coriander and baby fennel.

Deserts always include a cheeseboard of British & Italian cheeses with home made biscuits, and Marco's signature tiramisu, which is as light as a feather as well as such delights as Hot raspberry soufflé & mascarpone crème brulee!

East (cover charge of £15-£20)

This Asian fusion restaurant wasn't very busy - which was a real shame as the service was superb and the food was delightful. The restaurant is located on the promenade deck and has a tranquil, soothing atmosphere. Again, the menu changes midweek, so you can enjoy a different menu on your second visit.

Starters include: the lightest tempura vegetables with Asian salad and dipping sauce - beautifully presented, as well as quite a few favourites such as chicken satay (my favourite), won tons, Thai fish cakes & Asian broths.

For main course, you can opt for a mixed tandoori platter or one of the delicious fusion dishes. I opted for the spicy Szechuan Beef Fillet medallions, with a peppercorn crust, served with taro and spinach - it was so tasty and delicious. My boyfriend adored the grilled sea bass and scallops marinated in coconut milk and served with Thai asparagus and clam risotto - light, fresh & delicious. Deserts were superb too.

Ramblas (cover charge £5 or tapas from £2.50)

Ramblas is a large Spanish themed bar, which is an oasis in the ship with no entertainment, just gentle music. No need to book, just turn up any time from 2pm onwards and either opt for three lots of tapas for £2.50 - or a bargain three course Spanish meal for £5 - the most popular choice was a tapas to start, paella for main and then a traditional Spanish desert. This bar also had a delicious choice of Spanish wines and also you could get a delicious coffee for around £1.20!

There you go - that's about all there is on the food on Ventura - great choice, great value and extremely tasty food but with light and healthy options and plenty of vegetarian choices- now i'm heading off for something to eat. All that writing has made me hungry again!

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