Author Topic: QE2 Grills -- likes and dislikes  (Read 4557 times)

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Online Peter Mugridge

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QE2 Grills -- likes and dislikes
« on: Apr 20, 2010, 02:39 PM »
I would say that the system on Cunard where the ship itself is officially "classless" but where the restaurants are tied to specific grades of cabin is in fact a very good compromise.  You could easily adapt that slightly by making all the restaurants equal ( so everyone gets the same service ) but still tied to cabin grades upon which a fares banding system could be based.

And I would retain the 2 or 3 formal dining nights each week; it just seems right for the atmosphere in that it avoids the pressure of doing the formal every night, but avoids the slide in standards that being fully casual gives the impression of.
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Offline Cruisemarsh

QE2 Grills -- likes and dislikes
« Reply #1 on: Apr 20, 2010, 03:42 PM »
I would say that the system on Cunard where the ship itself is officially "classless" but where the restaurants are tied to specific grades of cabin is in fact a very good compromise.  You could easily adapt that slightly by making all the restaurants equal ( so everyone gets the same service ) but still tied to cabin grades upon which a fares banding system could be based.

And I would retain the 2 or 3 formal dining nights each week; it just seems right for the atmosphere in that it avoids the pressure of doing the formal every night, but avoids the slide in standards that being fully casual gives the impression of.


Good post Peter. I would also get rid of the grill lounges. I am not against formal nights at all, it is nice to dress up.
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Online cunardqueen

QE2 Grills -- likes and dislikes
« Reply #2 on: Apr 20, 2010, 07:43 PM »
Quote
Good post Peter. I would also get rid of the grill lounges
Its not the Grill  lounges, But the passengers in them!!!
They do think because they up there we should all bow to them.
Some of them that l have met are so far up their own arse all you can see are their feet, and whats worse there are others you cant even see their feet....  ;)

Then again lord knows what they think of us in steerage. There was once  was at the dance classes and learning to fandango or something and my partner, whom l didnt know casually asked during a break in our crushed toes lesson  "Oh were are you dinning",  I just replied "Oh lm in steerage eating with the crew", perhaps it was my sense of humour (which can be  a bit off the wall sometimes) But she mentioned "Oh the Mauretania, we would never dine there, We are in the Queen s Grill actually"  as she looked down her nose. My reply was " Well lm on the Captains Table and have No complaints"...    And the dancing never improved  ::)
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Cruise_Princess

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QE2 Grills -- likes and dislikes
« Reply #3 on: Apr 21, 2010, 10:06 AM »
Remember the days when the question you asked new people you met was 'What school do you go to?  On Qe2 they were DESPERATE to ask you what restaurant you dined in?  Didn';t make you a better person if you were in the grills did it?

Thing is ALL ships still have this form of class....they just call it different names...Concierge class on Celebrity....Court Villas on NCL  the Grills on Cunard.....Owners Suite...etc etc......

Its not the amount of money you have....you don't need to be rich to have manners nor respect for others....nor to be able to sit at a dining table and use the correct cutlery or wear a tuxedo.......its all about how you are brought up isn't it?   And THATS whats lacking today and spoiling not just cruising but our way of life as we were brought up......pretty sad really.

Offline pete cain

QE2 Grills -- likes and dislikes
« Reply #4 on: Apr 21, 2010, 02:55 PM »
Dear Andy, agree wholeheartedly with your comments, I found a tux to be a great leveller, (bit like a school uniform,nobody comparing trainer styles & etc , if you know what i mean?). As a manual worker, hell put me on the QE2 in a tux & I was worth a million...

Online Rob Lightbody

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QE2 Grills -- likes and dislikes
« Reply #5 on: Apr 21, 2010, 03:14 PM »
I realise this is taking the topic off topic, but here are some thoughts about QE2's grills, relative to the "ordinary" restaurants...

Without the grills, QE2 would never have been a success.

For many people, the grills experience WAS the QE2 experience.  It made her come up to the expectations that they had.  For many people stepping on board QE2 and into Mauretania, they thought her disappointing.  However for people stepping aboard and into a grill restaurant, they "got" it.  I watched this happen a number of times first-hand.

The service i experienced in PG and BG in 2007 and 2008 was sublime.  Absolutely exceptional personal service from the moment you walked in for the first evening right to the end.

I did not experience any snobbery, but the atmosphere in the grills was definitely "nicer" than in the rest of the ship.  Quite old fashioned.  I have never experienced anything like it anywhere in my life, and don't expect to.  PG restaurant as sun set over the med with great food, company and service was some of the best times of my entire life.

It wasn't just about the fact that you'd paid more - it was because the restaurants were smaller, and had a higher ratio of crew to passengers.  The food and presentation was also better.

So, I think its wrong to denigrate either the "cheap seats" or the posh ones, both had an important place on QE2, from 1968 until 2008.
Passionate about QE2's service life for 40 years and creator of this website.  I have worked in IT for 28 years and created my personal QE2 website in 1994.

Online cunardqueen

QE2 Grills -- likes and dislikes
« Reply #6 on: Apr 21, 2010, 09:01 PM »
I must admit l had lunch a number of times on back to back cruises in the Britannia Grill And once  dinner in Queens Grill years ago. What l did find and this was only my views the service was pretty stuffy. The classic dish l had was the chilled soup. In Mauretiana its cold soup in a bowl. In Caronia it really was chilled soup But in the Britannia Grill it came set in a shell with crushed ice and bits of fruit on the side and then the chilled soup. The presentation was superb. But it was just the atmosphere. Ok so there wasnt time to settle into and maybe its wrong to judge on these times or on the other table guests but the fun element didnt seem to be there. What did strike me was it was more of an "event" than just "lunch"

 What was nice was the silver service in Mauretania, that was a thing l always marvelled at. The preplated lark much as its far easier is something that is just accepted as the norm these days. 

Quote
However for people stepping aboard and into a grill restaurant, they "got" it.  I watched this happen a number of times first-hand.
Friends of mine once had the Queen Mary suite and early on during the cruise asked to be downgraded in Restaurant. As is lm sure first timers on QE2 and ending up in Mauretania must have wondered what on earth they were doing
As you say Rob  off topic :-X     
From the moment you first glimpsed the Queen,
 you just knew you were in for a very special time ahead.!

Offline Mauretania1907

QE2 Grills -- likes and dislikes
« Reply #7 on: Apr 22, 2010, 09:22 AM »
O, but when I was on board in 1989, I was asked if I wanted to be in Caronia, but I said I wanted Mauretania (I think much to the crews surprise) But I wanted to dine with my all-time fave ship IN my all time fave ship of today, so I was in heaven in the QE2 with all the lovely pix of Maury, all around the walls. (I had many happy memories of looking at the pictures, some which I had not seen before) and I would have been happy with bangers and mash, but then I was a busdriver, so not Posh in any case.

RmsAquitania

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QE2 Grills -- likes and dislikes
« Reply #8 on: Apr 22, 2010, 11:25 PM »
We had some friends from the queens grill i think it was, join us for dinner one night in the mauretania, and they said the actually enjoyed it more. They thought the mauretania was more relaxed and atmospheric.

Online Isabelle Prondzynski

Re: QE2 Grills -- likes and dislikes
« Reply #9 on: Apr 23, 2010, 12:47 AM »
By the time I stepped off QE2 for the last time, I had tried every restaurant on board for one voyage, and one of them twice (Britannia Grill). I must say that I cared not two hoots about the grading of these various dining places, but loved the Britannia Grill and the Princess Grill for a whole number of reasons :

  • they are small and very personal;
  • it is easier to get a table with a sea view;
  • they have one seating only -- so you can choose your mealtime;
  • you have the same table for all meals, and so, the waiters get to know all your likes and dislikes and remember important things even if you forget!

The three big restaurants were very good, but I just did not like them as much. And I thought it was a pity that, in the Mauretania Restaurant, you only sit at your assigned table for one meal of the day. But that one meal (dinner) was really excellent...  :D  .

I also found that I never encountered much snobbery over the restaurants or grills. Yes, people did ask where someone else dined, but I always took it to mean "should I have noticed you in my restaurant? maybe next time I need to be wearing my glasses!".

Offline Chris

Re: QE2 Grills -- likes and dislikes
« Reply #10 on: Apr 23, 2010, 07:08 AM »
Cons: Cost! ;)
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Cruise_Princess

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Re: QE2 Grills -- likes and dislikes
« Reply #11 on: Apr 23, 2010, 10:35 AM »
Having had various meals in the grills ...I wasn't really that impressed..but I'm not a foodie....some folks like to spend a very long time over lunch or dinner...there were extra frills like different tableware crystal etc...but in the main I was more than happy to always dine in the Caronia...my favourite restaurant...away from the 2 sittings which I hate...and it was always such a lovely atmosphere with lovely people and great service....the entrance in its own was so welcoming...the grills entrances seemed somehow poky to me.. and in particular that Queens Grill Lounge... I used to laugh if walking out on deck on a gorgeous sea day and seeing those folks stuck in there reading books or having coffee etc....in such a tiny space and here was all this magnificent ships to enjoy and fabulous fresh air outdoors...sometimes I have to say you felt as thought they were looking down there noses at you..but they probably were not..it was just a feeling...but I know where I would rather be! .if paying all that amount if money I would like these restaurants to have a more welcoming entrance...whilst they were very nice inside...i just preferred my Caronia restaurant....it's just what I was used to....but loved every minute of it.

Online Rob Lightbody

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Re: QE2 Grills -- likes and dislikes
« Reply #12 on: Apr 23, 2010, 11:11 AM »
I wish I'd had more chance to try both QE2 and her restaurants!  If I had been making anything other than 2 last minute no expense spared "dream" trips, I'd have been in Mauretania every time.  If I hadn't been so obsessed with my car club for so long, I might have been on QE2, and only Mauretania would have ever been in reach. 

So, we knew that being in a grill on a QE2 was only going to happen once!  Its fair to say that we felt spoiled & special, but thats what we expected from QE2.  The restaurant was better than any I'd ever been in, and my Mum said it reminded her of how things were in her youth.  PG, with its special wee "secret" bar, and spiral staircase, and the fact that it was mostly original, and the fact that it only "came alive" in the evening (it was only ever designed to be used in the evening) - it all felt amazing, especially being seated right by the window.

The attentive sommelier, who would fill up your wine glass without you noticing him doing it, and just at the right moment, the marmalade trolley (!), the cheese trolley... the wee chocolates... the cake trolley...

The food in the PG/BG would potentially be exactly the same as the Caronia food, seeing as it was coming from the same kitchen... although I believe the menus were different?

On my 2 trips, there were a large number of first-timers and i genuinely think that a lot of them were not even particularly aware that the grills existed.  Bemused looks were seen sometimes seen when we "popped up" into the Crystal Bar.

Despite being entitled to use the GQ lounge, we never did.  However we probably should, because afternoon tea was usually too busy and it was hard to get a nice seat for it.
Passionate about QE2's service life for 40 years and creator of this website.  I have worked in IT for 28 years and created my personal QE2 website in 1994.

RmsAquitania

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Re: QE2 Grills -- likes and dislikes
« Reply #13 on: Apr 24, 2010, 01:13 AM »
I always used my owncrystal glasses in the mauretania,always used to take a setof edinburgh or waterford for those little swarees in the cabin ! Always had  the same window table in the mauretania the secret was to book it for your next cruise while you were onboard, and i have to say ozzy and the other waiters in our section always pampered us and made us feel special, so i guess thats why i never had the ambition to do the grills, but i will admit to having a look around them :-)

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Re: QE2 Grills -- likes and dislikes
« Reply #14 on: Apr 24, 2010, 10:32 AM »
I wonder how many passengers actually booked Grill Class cabins because they wanted to dine nowhere else other than the Grills...or was it just  for the bigger better cabin?  I would book a grill class cabin for the better cabin but would ask to dine in the Caronia if at all possible....if I was told I could not at time of booking I would  then just book the normal Caronia restaurant grade cabin.
« Last Edit: Apr 25, 2010, 06:33 PM by Isabelle Prondzynski »

 

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