Our last meal aboard the Pride of America also happened to be our final specialty dining reservation. It was something different that I’ve yet to see on any other ship that I’ve been on across 5 cruise lines. Yes, we got to experience Teppanyaki on a cruise ship. While not completely authentic, it was at the very least an experience nonetheless that was included in our 3-restaurant dining package. With only 2 Teppanyaki stations, it was imperative that one makes a reservation, otherwise, the chances of getting in are slim.
Similarly with land-based Teppanyaki joints, we were given a choice of proteins which were accompanied by appetizers, veggies, fried rice and dessert. After starting out with Wakame Salad and Miso Soup, we moved onto the Garlic Fried Rice which was flavorful and garlicky. This was well-prepared with enough high temperatures to caramelize flavors and provided a nuttiness. On the other hand, the chef was pretty aggressive with the soy, which was evident in the color and overall taste.
For my main, I had the Surf & Turf consisting of filet mignon and prawns. Prepared a beautiful medium-rare, the filet was moist and buttery. It required very little effort to chew. Dressed in an obscene amount of garlic butter, there was no need for any other sauces or seasoning. The prawns were also on point being buttery and crunchy. However, much like the fried rice, the use of soy could've been dialed back. The side of veggies were a touch soft, but not mushy.
With probably the most expensive ingredients, Viv and my mom went for the Seafood Combination with lobster, scallops and calamari. As much as the lobster was texturally on point with a classic rebound and appealing chewiness, it was completely over-seasoned with soy. Hence, there was a biting saltiness that took away from the wonderful meat. On the other hand, the scallops were buttery and the calamari was delicately tender while maintaining a chew. These 2 were seasoned just enough.
My daughter opted for the Shogun with chicken breast and filet mignon (steak not pictured as it was still being made when I took the photo). Her steak was exactly like mine while the chicken was a touch rubbery but still moist inside. However, similar to the other dishes, there was far too much soy where all we tasted was a sharp saltiness. If we had a bowl of plain rice, it would've helped, but the salty garlic fried rice only made it worse.
Thankfully, we moved onto sweeter things with the Green Tea Cake with cashew brittle and green tea ice cream was weak. The cake was dense and almost seemed under-baked. It tasted like raw flour and sugar. On the other hand, the ice cream was creamy and full of green tea flavor. For myself, I just wanted something simple and had the Fruit Sashimi (interesting way of calling it). Well, it was fresh fruit and it was sliced to make it look nice. It came with mango and coconut dip. I thought they were too sweet and unnecessary. Another thing that was unnecessary was the amount of soy sauce used in the preparation of the meal. On the other hand, we would've liked to see more of a show as there wasn't even an onion volcano. Personally, I'd skip this meal as part of any dining package.
- You get some entertainment (as lame as it was)
- Different food than most of the other spots on board
- Too salty
- Got a basic show, not very entertaining