Sherman's Food Adventures: Holland America MS Veendam Main Rotterdam Dining Room Day 4

Holland America MS Veendam Main Rotterdam Dining Room Day 4

We've all seen Peggy's Cove before on TV, in paintings, pictures and on the internet.  The place is picturesque and is just bubbling over with CanadianaAnother one of my bucket list items, it was our first destination once our ship docked in Halifax.  We went straight to the car rental office (in the train station across the street) and hightailed it there.  We originally planned to stay only an hour but ended up enjoying the beauty for more than 2 hours.  Sometimes the seemingly simplest, less glitzy places is where you can enjoy yourself the most...

So far, the cruise yielded a good selection of appies and entrees, but the menu this time had probably the least appealing appetizers.  As such, I got the most interesting item in the Venison Sausage Soup which was not as salty as I would’ve guessed.  Rather, it was pretty mild with a good amount of flavour from the sausage and veggies.  I found it clean and fairly tasty.  The Tomato & Mozzarella Salad with toasted foccacia was less than inspiring with not enough dressing to add any impact to the dish.  The cheese was fresh and texturally on point while the tomatoes were fine too.

It was great that Costanza’s youngest son got to order something off the adult menu in the veritable Spaghetti and Meatballs.  This was an elevated version consisting of al dente spaghettini laced in a fresh tasting and mild tomato sauce.  However, the meatballs were lacking, not in flavor, but texturally, they were really mushy.  The rest of the kiddies all went for the Short Rib which was fall apart tender.  It wasn’t exactly melt-in-their-mouths, but it was soft and still a bit meaty (which was a good thing).  The reduced braising sauce was full of depth and meatiness as well as being properly seasoned.

For myself, I went for the Seared Black Cod which was nicely prepared.  The meat was still buttery and flaky despite being a little overdone (black cod is generally a forgiving fish).  It was well seasoned and sat on a bed of wilted spinach which was a tad salty.  I would’ve liked to see the spinach less cooked though.  I also had the Veal Tenderloin which was attractively grilled and super moist.  I found it mildly seasoned while the tasty jus was lacking in quantity.  I found the polenta underneath a bit stiff, but well-seasoned.

For dessert, the Snicker’s Cake literally took the cake.  Although the chocolate cake was a bit dry, the peanut cream and chocolate ganache made up for it.  Furthermore, the lack of sweetness of the cake nicely balanced the cream.  Hence, the cake was aromatic and not as sweet as it appeared.  Costanza thought this was one of the better slices of cake he's had in awhile.  On the other hand, the Pear Crepes were downright terrible.  Not only was it bland, the crepes were akin to thin cardboard.  We were not sure how they managed to mess this up so badly.

For myself, the Hazelnut Mousse was airy and light while of course not very sweet (well it could be sweet, but they used a moderate amount of sugar substitute).  I found the hazelnut to be a little fake tasting, but okay nonetheless.  Viv had the Peach Crisp which was okay but lacking in varied flavours.  It was mostly sweet and not very hot.  So really, the temperature had a major impact where there was no aroma nor activated flavours.  Other than a few highlights, this unappetizing menu did deliver on its promise of mediocrity.  I would learn a little later on a subsequent Holland America cruise that one of the midweek meals would be just as blah as this one.


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