The new Disney Wish features three themed family restaurants for dining, plus adults-only steakhouse Palo and French cuisine Enchanté by three-Michelin-star chef Arnaud Lallement. There is also a self-serve Marceline Market food court for breakfast and lunch, with table service for dinner.
Other options include Mickey & Friends Festival of Food with booths offering such staples as barbecue, hot dogs, bratwursts, hamburgers, tacos, and self-serve soft serve ice cream and soda.
It’s all headed up by Executive Chef Steven Walker, who hails from Scotland and has worked with Disney Cruise Line for a total of about 15 years. He attributed the onboard dining experience to his crew, including 165 chefs, noting that Disney has a very high retention rate among its crew.
“We have great kitchens and a great environment. It’s hard work, every day, but our people gain invaluable experience and can build careers.
“Coming here, our chefs should have three to four years of experience at a quality venue before they join us, and then we take it from there and train them in all aspects of galley operations – from burgers by the pool to our dining rooms and serving up to 4,000 guests every day.
“These are all different forms of catering. I think it’s a fantastic experience. It sets people up for future success.
Disney’s unique revolving dining concept was introduced on its first ship, the Magic, in 1998. This means that the guests, together with their waiters, turn to three dining rooms with different themes and designs.
On the Wish includes Worlds of Marvel featuring Marvel character backgrounds; Arendelle guests will be treated to a Frozen theme with live entertainment and Norwegian-inspired dishes; and 1923, named after the year Walt Disney Studios was founded and features a California-style menu. Decorations include storyboards, sketches and props that illustrate how artists bring their ideas to the screen.
The adults-only 115-seat Palo Steakhouse offers steaks and Italian dishes under the guidance of Chef Salvatore Messina from Sicily. At the 45-seat Enchanté, guests can order à la carte or a six-course meal or a nine-course experience.
Beverage Director Salah Chetbi explained: “Guests can enjoy a full menu selection, order à la carte or simply come in for a main course. They can spend two hours or 15 minutes if they like.
Messina noted that “everything is done on board.” Regarding Enchanté, Maitre d’Benoit Roustaing added that all the ingredients used are of the highest quality and fresh, with “cold water lobsters flying in on the day the ship departs.”
Between both venues is The Rose Lounge, where you can enjoy cocktails before or after dinner.
Speaking at The Rose Lounge, Chetbi noted that not only the lounge is inspired by Disney’s storytelling, but also the drink creations, the cocktails.
Fittingly, Enchante’s entrance features a light structure resembling a champagne bubble. The main light in the Nightingale Piano Bar uses a different bubble motif, inspired by the story of Cinderella.
Perhaps the most striking bar area is the adults-only Star Wars-themed Hyperspace Lounge, which features a large monitor that looks like a window through which patrons can watch a seemingly live scene of spaceships flying to distant galaxies.
Excerpted from Cruise Industry News Quarterly Magazine: Fall 2022