As you sail from one captivating destination to the next, Oceania Cruises’ commitment to culinary excellence shines throughout. The luxury cruise line’s gourmet culinary programme begins with sourcing premium artisanal ingredients from around the world, from prized Castilla-La Mancha saffron to fine French flour, custom-milled to the Oceania Cruises’ exact specifications. The spacious state-of-the-art galleys onboard the ships, akin to those found in Michelin-starred restaurants, are appointed with cutting-edge culinary equipment. The distinguished chefs, selected from the world’s best restaurants, are the true masters behind what’s affectionately known as The Finest Cuisine at Sea.
Recently chef Alexis Quaretti (right), Oceania Cruises’ Senior Culinary Director, was inducted into the prestigious echelons of the Maîtres Cuisiniers de France. Quaretti joins Oceania Cruises’ Vice President of Culinary, Eric Barale (left), who served as Quaretti’s godfather into the programme.
The association of Master Chefs of France was established in 1951. Its goal is to support and promote French culinary arts around the world. This mission is embodied by the chef members. Hailed as ambassadors of French cuisine and culture, they are responsible for relaying this heritage to their apprentices. Proudly, Oceania Cruises is the only major cruise line to boast two Master Chefs of France.
Originally from Fontainebleau, France, Quaretti started his career at some of the finest restaurants in the world including the 1-Michelin-star Château de Marçay, the 3-Michelin-star L’Arpège, where he not only discovered but also refined his knowledge and appreciation for vegetable-based cuisine, and thereafter the 2-Michelin-star La Pyramide.
Driven by the desire to make Oceania Cruises a destination for pleasure-seekers in search of one-of-a-kind experiences, chef Quaretti has created a menu of universal world flavours with his own French expertise and unique fondness for diverse products. As the line’s recipe development manager, Quaretti has designed, made and tested every dish served on an Oceania Cruises’ ship. He and his talented team create approximately 300 new recipes each year to constantly revitalise and reinvigorate the onboard menus.
“My cruise cuisine may be mainly inspired by our French art de vivre, but my experiences in cities and ports around the world play a huge role. My teams and I are always experimenting to elevate our restaurant concepts to a certain standard that speaks to everyone. That said, our philosophy and creativity are still open to the travels and treasures that being at sea brings,” says Alexis Quaretti
A culinary journey at sea
Quaretti’s passion is ever prevalent aboard newly launched ship, Vista with its 11 culinary venues – three of which are completely new dining concepts and debut on board. These include Aquamar Kitchen, The Bakery at Baristas and Ember.
Aquamar Kitchen offers guests an abundance of indulgence with none of the guilt. At breakfast, diners can enjoy smoothies, cold-pressed juices and energy bowls, whilst at lunch the avocado toast selections and globally inspired salads, wraps and poke bowls are delectable and full of flavour. To reflect the wellness-inspired dishes, the beverage menu features a selection of premium, award-winning non-alcoholic wines, Pierre Zero from France as well as a refreshing collection of mocktails crafted with Lyre’s non-alcoholic spirits.
The Bakery at Baristas is an expansion of the cruise line’s popular coffee bar serving delicious French and Italian pastries, finger sandwiches and homemade biscotti.
Ember is an upscale, yet relaxed space where guests can enjoy an authentically rich American dining experience. Signature restaurant, Ember seamlessly blends the contemporary fresh vibrance of renowned culinary capitals such as Napa and Sonoma with the warmth and richness of the revitalised food and beverage scene of America’s heartland. From blackened crab cake with fresh corn salsa and roasted tomato sauce or dive into the salty delights of a roasted beetroot salad with tangy goat cheese, delicate shallots, seared green beans and toasted hazelnuts. Savour a succulent steak prepared to your liking, relishing the umami of a porcini-dusted bone-in ribeye with an unctuous foie gras-truffle demi-glace and seasoned crunch of breadcrumb-crusted tomato Provençale. For dessert, a roasted apple tart with nutty notes served with Humphry Slocombe sweet summer corn ice cream is a novel nod to the evolving complexity of American farm-to-table cuisine.
Dining with Oceania Cruises is a truly unique experience, with such a huge selection of restaurants available to choose from – and with all speciality restaurants included – guests are spoilt for choice.
Top 5 selection of culinary voyages
To try first-hand the exquisite cuisine that an Oceania Cruise has to offer, here is a selection of culinairy voyages in 2023 and 2024.
The 12-night, Caribbean Wanderlust, roundtrip from Miami departs in November on board the stunning new Vista. Calling at no less than eight breath-taking Caribbean islands including The Bahamas, Puerto Rico, St. Barts, Dominica, Barbados, Grenada, St. Lucia, and Antigua.
Step aboard Marina in January 2024 for a voyage of a lifetime with Oceania Cruises’ 24-day Cape Horn Mariner itinerary. This spectacular South American cruise allows for immersive exploration, highlights include Brazil with its lush landscapes and vibrant beaches, the penguin-rich Falkland Islands, Chile’s astonishing fjords and the icy wonders of Antarctica.
Renowned for its beautiful beaches, turquoise waters and vibrant culture, French Polynesia is a dream destination waiting to be discovered. The 10-night, Tahitian Legends itinerary on board Nautica in January and February of 2024 will explore; Tahiti, Moorea, Fakarava, Nuku Hiva, Rangiroa, Bora Bora and Raiatea.
A myriad of inspiring sights awaits you on the 16-day, Far East Memories voyage on board Insignia in March 2024. A mesmerising combination of the Philippines’ secluded beaches, Taiwan’s futuristic skyscrapers, Borneo’s untamed wilderness and Japan’s gilded temples.
The 15-day Sheiks & Pharaohs sets sails from Dubai in May 2024, offering an intriguing exploration of the Middle East on board the meticulously re-inspired Riviera. Ports of call include Omen, Egypt, Jordan, and overnights in Israel where you can discover the wonders of the ancient city of Jerusalem.
Contact us for additional information on Oceania Cruises’ small-ship luxury product, exquisitely crafted cuisine and expertly curated travel experiences.