When you get invited to go on a cruise ship, you go — no ifs, ands or buts. When we got invited to check out the Norwegian Escape, we dropped everything to tour this huge addition to the cruise line’s fleet.
The Escape, which went into service last November, is home to over 25 dining experiences and 21 bars and lounges that guests can enjoy on trips to the Caribbean. Miami locals will get a real kick out of the ship, which pays homage to Miami landmarks like Tobacco Road and features concepts from notable names in the culinary scene.
One of those names: The Pubbelly Boys, who need no introduction. You can now experience the team’s cuisine at sea in the form of Food Republic by Pubbelly. The concept takes the ship’s name to heart, letting diners escape to different parts of the world with delicious global cuisine. After trying the food, all we want to do now is travel.
The immersive dining experience begins with the menu, which is displayed on iPads; stunning photography throughout the digital book makes each dish look mouthwatering on screen, and they’re just as pretty in person. From the short rib and corn dumplings, hamachi taquitos and beef anticuchos to the buffalo-style rock shrimp, yellowtail roll and Coco Loco dessert, there’s no shortage of scrumptious selections to satisfy your stomach.
It’s hard not to order everything here, but if you do, you have an entire ship to explore to burn off all the food. Practically a mini-city, the Norwegian Escape offers floor upon floor of entertainment for guests. Relax and digest with some Broadway entertainment at the Escape Theater, laugh off the calories at Headliners Comedy Club or check out the multi-level Sports Complex for mini-golf, basketball and other fun activities. Guests who splurge on the Haven (the most luxurious accommodations on the Escape) have a private sundeck and other comforts to chill out after such a delightful meal.
If your Food Republic experience was anything like ours, you’ll be thinking about this food long after you disembark the ship. Fortunately, you can now recreate many of Chef Jose Mendin’s dishes at home. The chef, in partnership with Norwegian Cruise Line, has released a new digital cookbook available on iTunes: Food Republic by Jose Mendin.
Inside the digital tome, hungry readers will find 30 dishes that bring the world into your kitchen. Throughout the 47 pages, there are recipes for Pubbelly favorites as well as Food Republic-specific plates:
- Pubbelly Dates with Chorizo
- Hamachi Taquitos
- Short Rib Dumplings
- Kimchee Fried Rice
- Butter Crab Roll
At $1.99, a cookbook from a James Beard-nominated chef is a steal — especially when combined with beautiful pictures taken by renowned local photographer Juan Fernando Ayora (full disclosure: we’re huge fans). The book is currently available on iPad and will be released on Android and Amazon in the future. Visit the iTunes store to purchase your copy. To learn more about the Norwegian Escape, click here.
To book a cruise on Norwegian Escape, contact a travel professional, call Norwegian at 888- NCL-CRUISE (625-2784), or visit www.ncl.com.