Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Remy: Perfection at Sea

Most will agree that the Disney Cruise Line experience is fantastic, and many will include a visit to Palo to enhance their cruise.  I have discovered that to reach the pinnacle of enjoyment on your Disney Cruise you need to dine at Remy.
Remy is one of the adult-only restaurants available on both the Disney Dream and the Disney Fantasy.  The menu for Remy was created by Chef Arnaud Lallement from l’Assiette Champenoise and Chef Scott Hunnel from Victoria & Albert's.  My mouth waters just thinking about this menu!
 
 
 
I was fortunate enough to dine at Remy on the Disney Fantasy, and I must admit that the excitement starts to build even before you check in at the podium (used for both Palo and Remy).  Prior to your reservation time, you will receive an invitation to meet with the Chef Sommelier to peruse the Wine Room for a rare wine to accompany your meal.  Although we did not accept this invitation, it really sets the tone for the evening.  Once you have checked in and are waiting for your table in Meridian, the anticipation increases - in a flash the hostess tells you it is time to enter the world of Remy.  The elegant atmosphere envelops you immediately, and it feels like you were just granted VIP access.  Everyone is there waiting to make sure your experience is perfect:  David, the Maître d’, Amandine, our Server, and an entourage to escort our party to the table and later assist with serving the meal.  Do not worry about where to place your handbag or camera, a lovely stool will magically appear to hold all your belongings. 



On the way to your table, the hostess points out the many Hidden Remy’s in the restaurant – in the chandelier, on the walls, and on the back of the chairs, to name a few.  All of the Hidden Remy’s are tasteful, and blend well with the sophisticated surroundings.  Do not worry – there is nothing tacky in this restaurant!
 
 
 
Our server, Amandine, was fantastic.  Originally from France, she definitely added authenticity to our experience.  The Latin origin of the name Amandine is “she who must be loved,” and I could not imagine a more appropriate name.  We truly loved Amandine!  She sincerely made you feel welcome.  Like family.  There was no awkwardness, no air of superiority.  I could ask anything without hesitation, and she explained everything wonderfully.  She shared many wonderful stories, as well as tidbits of information without being intrusive. 

To begin the experience, we were asked a trivia question from Disney’s Ratatouille.  Why?  The answer to the trivia question is the name of the champagne cocktail that begins your adventure.  I would tell you the name, but I do not want to spoil the surprise when you try Remy for yourself.  You can try to produce this wonderful cocktail at home (you are given complete instructions as it is being made), with maybe the exception of the pixie dust.
 
Delicious bread selections were continuously offered, and butter and sea salt were available on the table.  Everyone also received a marvelous crouton filled with tomato soup.  It is surprising how this scrumptious culinary feat is accomplished.  And what meal at Remy would be complete without Ratatouille topped with a dollop of olive-oil ice cream.  

There are two menus available at Remy – Saveur (Chef Arnaud Lallement’s creation) and Gout (Chef Scott Hunnel’s creation), as well as a la carte offerings.  You can truly customize your meal as much as you wish.  Surprisingly, I was drawn to the Saveur menu with only one substitution.  I deviated from the recommended Cabillaud Girolles Coco Rouge Sauce Chili (Cod with Red Beans, Girolle Mushrooms and Chili Sauce), and instead chose the Wild Turbot (from the Gout menu).  My husband tried the cod, but definitely wished he had ordered the Wild Turbot – what a wonderful turn of events from our last encounter with Turbot!  Of course the “Terre/Earth” portion of the meal, Boef de Wagyu (Wagyu Beef), was phenomenal.  After another tasty course, Amandine rolled a cart over to our table displaying a spectacular selection of cheeses.  Unfortunately, at this point I was beyond stuffed and could only handle a small amount of the cheese offered, and had to refuse the accompaniments.  I have to say that the “no-diet” cheese and “stinky” cheese were awesome!  Although Amandine presented the cheese properly, we will always lovingly refer to them by their nick-names.  As if this were not enough, we still had dessert to conquer.  Honestly, I lost the battle, and was only able to taste a small portion of my Paris-Brest (a hazelnut masterpiece). 
 

We were celebrating on this cruise, and at the end of the meal Amandine brought out a plate decorated with a lovely chocolate sentiment.  Amandine invited us to stay and enjoy a plethora of candy (chocolates, marshmallow creations, gourmet lollipops); however none of us could eat one more bite.  Instead they wrapped the confections in cellophane and tied our packages with ribbons so we could enjoy the little pieces of heaven later.  Every female was also presented with a rose.  What a truly extraordinary experience!
 
I know, for many it all comes down to cost.  At $75.00 per person, this meal is a must-do.  If you would like the wine pairings to accompany the meal, it would be an additional $99.00 per person.  The Champagne Brunch is $50.00 per person, with an additional $25.00 charge per person for wine pairings.  Concierge and Platinum Castaway Club members may book 120 days in advance, Gold Castaway Club members may book 105 days in advance, Silver Castaway Club members may book 90 days in advance, and First-time cruisers may book 75 days in advance. 
 
Please keep in mind that there is a strict dress code at Remy, and a jacket is required for men with dress pants/slacks and dress shoes (ties are optional), and for women a cocktail dress, dressy pantsuit, skirt/blouse, or nice dress is required.  No jeans, shorts, capri pants, sandals, flip-flops or tennis shoes are permitted. 
 
I would love to hear about your favorite Disney Cruise Line dining experience. 
 
 
 
Jenell

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