Tuesday night Travel Agent and representatives of New York-area travel agencies had the chance to attend a special preview dinner for La Mer, which is making its debut to the North American cruise market on Princess Cruises’ new Sky Princess, launching this October.
While the restaurant made its official debut in 2017 onboard the Majestic Princess, since that ship primarily served the Asia cruise market, the Sky Princess will mark the first time North American travelers have the chance to check out the new French restaurant concept.
Billed as a casual, French bistro-style dining experience with a “modern twist,” La Mer is the brainchild of Chef Emmanuel Renaut, the founder, owner and executive chef of the three-Michelin-star Flocons de Sel restaurant in the French Alps.
What can guests expect? Our five-course preview dinner included a number of French classics, such as an escargot starter, with some unexpected touches. The escargot were crisped up and balled in panko bread crumbs, while the red snapper and scallop mouselline, served in onion and lobster jus, had an unexpected textural surprise: tapioca balls! The cured salmon was another highlight; lightly smoked and paired with a deviled egg, the dish was finished off with a hazelnut and balsamic vinaigrette. Despite the La Mer name, though, the meal wasn’t all seafood: a braised veal shank with a morel and button mushroom cream sauce stood up well to a delicious M. Chapoutier Chateauneuf-du-Pape La Bernadine (2015) --- easily the table's favorite wine of the evening -- while dessert finished on a delightfully light note, with a soft meringue, lemon and lime filling egg custard.
The Sky Princess will launch in the Mediterranean this October as the newest ship from Princess Cruises and the first designed from the ground up to incorporate the line’s new Ocean Medallion wearable technology, as well as the first ship to incorporate the line’s new Sky Suites. In December, the ship will make its North American debut, sailing Caribbean cruises roundtrip from Fort Lauderdale.