Silversea Cruises has just launched a new program called S.A.L.T., which stands for “Sustainable, Authentic and Local Tastes” and aims to bring the best of what local cuisines have to offer to its passengers on board the ships.
The s.a.l.t. silversea is a new cruise line that delivers local tastes of the world through its itineraries.
You’ve probably heard the saying, “When in Rome, do as the Romans do.” From a gastronomic standpoint, there may be no better way to do it than to cruise aboard Silversea’s new 596-passenger Silver Moon.
It’s the first ship in the ultra-luxury line’s fleet to offer the S.A.L.T. (Sea and Land Taste) program, which will also debut on Silver Dawn later this year.
Moon of Silver (Silversea Cruises provided this image.)
S.A.L.T. Kitchen, a new speciality restaurant overflowing with meals that are either local classics, locally produced, or resident favorites in the sailing area, is one of the main program components. They go so far as to specify the port of call. When the ship docks at Mykonos during the day, for example, the dinner menu is overflowing with such delicacies.
A comparable technique may also be seen at Patmos, Milos, and other ports of call. It’s a thorough dive into local food that’s more Bourdain than Michelin in attitude. Simply stated, it elevates the idea of “destination immersion” to a new, more intimate, more local, and adventurous level.
Silver Moon’s S.A.L.T. Kitchen (Silversea Cruises provided this image.)
On the day the Silver Moon docked in Syros, Greece, I dined with Roberto Martinoli, the line’s president and CEO, at a table in the evening. The “local” emphasis was obviously the highlight as we were given our menus. The menu is divided into two sections: a “Voyage Menu” that focuses on the sailing area (in our instance, the eastern Mediterranean) and a “Terrain Menu” that varies nightly depending on the port of call.
The Terrain Menu’s starters/appetizers were “Flavors of Syros” with San Michali, a hard cow’s cheese, and Aetopita, a flatbread topped with marinated swordfish, tomato, fennel, and Greek olive oil since we were on Syros. However, I chose “Astakomakaronada,” an eastern Mediterranean pasta dish with lobster, from the Voyage Menu as a beginning. It was delicious and the serving size was just perfect.
But for the main course, “Syros Loukanika,” local sausages with roasted potatoes and braised fennel, I went for a genuine local speciality. Two of our tablemates had gone ashore on Syros for sightseeing and said that their guide highlighted these sausages as an island speciality, so it seemed appropriate to order them.
I also ordered a Syros speciality, the “Halvadopita,” which consists of almond nougat sandwiched between sweet wafers and served with frozen orange yogurt.
Tom Baker, president and partner, CruiseCenter, Houston, traveled on Silver Moon the week after I did, and he had this local fresh fish of the day on the sea day.
Drinks are included in the S.A.L.T. idea of sampling and appreciating “local tastes.” S.A.L.T. Kitchen offers a fantastic wine list with over 70 options, all of which showcase the best of Greek and Cypriot winemaking.
But there’s also a brand-new bar called S.A.L.T. Bar (located near the S.A.L.T. Kitchen on Deck 4). It’s a cozy, modest space that’s ideal for a pre-dinner drink. Yes, you may still order your favorites like wine, beer, spirits, and cocktails, but I recommend sampling the lovely, locally-inspired cocktails. How about this as an example?
A “Selene, the Moon,” named after Selene, the ancient Greek Moon goddess, was ordered by a fellow traveler. She couldn’t help but admire the odd form of the drink with the top “dome” when the bartender placed it in front of her. When she moved in closer to examine it, however, the drink’s dome crumbled and dissolved. Because it was unexpected, everyone in her group and at neighboring tables burst out laughing. The Selene is made with moonshot gin, maraschino, fresh lemon, peach bitters, rue berries, and “citrus smoke,” a variation on the traditional Aviation cocktail.
Adolo Ouzo Plomari, a classic Greek cocktail made from ouzo produced on the Greek island of Lesbos, is one of the drinks on the menu. The S.A.L.T. Bar menu recommends mixing local ouzo with Greek Mastiqua Sparkling Water and a piece of lemon in this highball drink.
I loved that the menu included a colorful, non-alcoholic drink called “Fork in the Road,” which was inspired by a story from the eastern Mediterranean. When a Byzantine Princess and a Venetian Doge married, the bride dined with her own golden fork, which was frowned upon by the Venetians, who ate with their hands rather than cutlery at the time. Alcohol-free Prosecco, apricot jam, orange juice, fresh lemon, and nonalcoholic Aecorn bitter aperitif are used to make this cocktail.
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Barbara Muckermann, Silversea’s chief marketing officer, and Adam Sachs, S.A.L.T.’s director, a James Beard award-winning culinary writer and former editor in chief of Saveur, created the comprehensive S.A.L.T. program. The S.A.L.T. idea is unique in that it includes meals, beverages, and activities both onboard the ship and ashore in the locations visited.
Silver Moon’s daily menu of onboard activities includes new hands-on culinary lessons for up to 12 guests at the new, high-tech S.A.L.T. Lab, in addition to the S.A.L.T. Kitchen and S.A.L.T. Bar. Guests booked everything from “Rediscovering Phyllo: A Hands-On Approach to a Versatile Dough” and “How to Mezze” to “Cook the Menu: Moussaka” and “Beyond Borders: The Food and Flavors of Cyprus” on our trip.
Silver Moon’s S.A.L.T. Lab (Silversea Cruises provided this image.)
Guests who are enthusiastic foodies or looking for a different kind of beach excursion can check out the line’s new S.A.L.T. Ashore excursions. I didn’t get to see any of them, but others who did appeared to like them for getting a closer look at a certain location or food. Some passengers went ashore on the S.A.L.T. Ashore excursion, “Tastes of the Cyclades,” during a port day in Paros, for example.
The trip began with a stop to a biodynamic, organic farm specialized in olive, pomegranate, almond, acacia, and carob trees. Those who wanted to may select and eat figs straight from the tree, smell fresh Cretan oregano, sage, and other spices, visit a greenhouse, taste olive oil, dried herbs, bakery products, and more.
(Photo courtesy of Silversea Cruises)
The group next went to Thalassamou, a local restaurant chosen by Sachs, where they saw a phyllo making demonstration, tasted breads baked over a wood fire, and ate “meze,” or Greek small dishes.
(Photo courtesy of Silversea Cruises)
(Photo courtesy of Silversea Cruises)
According to Martinoli, every ultra-luxury line offers excellent cuisine, but S.A.L.T.’s gourmet plunge into local dishes and beverages is already proving attractive to foodies, providing Silversea a distinct offering in the luxury cruise industry.
To put it another way, this isn’t simply a one- or two-dish program on the main dining room menu. It’s an immersion into the sailing region’s culinary culture, with stand-alone restaurants, innovative programs, and shore choices. It also has nothing to do with famous chefs. On the other hand, the line now employs a food anthropologist.
Martinoli believes that up to 10% of the passengers are such die-hard foodies that they will participate in S.A.L.T. activities on a daily basis, while the rest of the passengers will participate in a few S.A.L.T. activities during the trip. As a result, it provides more options, regardless of whether you like “everything food” or want to engage in just one or two culinary activities.
In terms of other Silver Moon eating options, I enjoyed a fantastic dinner at La Dame, Silversea’s excellent French restaurant, one evening. The “Caviar and Condiments,” a one-ounce piece of trademark, farm-raised caviar served with buckwheat blinis, Jersey potatoes, and traditional condiments, was a great way to start.
“La Dame excels in superb service, a phenomenal wine list, and French specialties from Foie Gras to Profiteroles,” says Monte Mathews, a well-known food writer, publisher at Brick Kiln Kitchens, and blogger who also sailed on my recent Greek Isles cruise.
Kaiseki, which has an intimate Japanese atmosphere and offers sushi, sashimi, and other Japanese delicacies, is another popular restaurant on Silver Moon. According to Mathews, “everything from the presentation to the meal itself is of the top level.”
I’d have to agree with you. I had the King Crab Tempura (king crab balls) for supper one night, and they were delicious; notice that I requested them not to add the sauce, so you wouldn’t see it in the picture.
Then I had the Lobster Soup, which was made with a seafood consommé flavored with lemongrass and yuzu and served with lobster medallions.
“Try the Wagyu beef served both on its own and as a component in Kaiseki’s rendition of ‘Surf and Turf,’” Mathews recommends as an entrée. I followed his advice and ordered the “Maine Lobster Tail & Wagyu Surf and Turf” since I had seafood on the brain the night I dined here and wanted a taste of beef as well. Let’s just say it lived up to expectations.
The service was excellent throughout the dinner. This restaurant’s calming tones and music appealed to me. Even though I was eating alone, it made me feel at comfortable. At Kaiseki, I had a great time.
Kaiseki’s Passion Fruit Crème Brulee is a must-try dessert, according to Mathews. Green Tea Fondant, which consists of a green-tea infused dark chocolate fondant, Yuzu-flavored Crème Anglaise, and exotic fruit Brunoise, is another excellent option in my opinion. It was presented in a unique way and melted in the mouth.
I enjoyed the Arts Café for fast meals, a bottle of wine, rapid service, and a beautiful, peaceful atmosphere with literature, a bar, comfy seats both inside and outdoors, and diverse art to explore during my trip.
I ate have Atlantide, Silver Moon’s main restaurant on Deck 4, many times. It was, for the most part, a fantastic experience. When the flavor of a Thai curry meal didn’t live up to my expectations, I told the waiter. She was kind, appeared to appreciate the information, and offered to get me something else right away. What’s the bottom line? She handled the issue with grace.
One evening, a buddy and I dined poolside at the laid-back Hot Rocks. Expect multicolored tables lights, careful table service for food and beverages, and a cuisine specialized on “hot rocks cooking” if you attend. In essence, a lava rock slab is heated to 420 degrees before being placed on the table with raw fish, shellfish, meat, or vegetables.
The waiter drapes a “bib” over your neck to prevent drips and drizzles from spoiling your clothes. The crew then leaves cruisers to “do the honors,” putting their chosen supper option on the heated surface to sizzle and snap, after a few words of instruction. My buddy got rib eye, and I had prawns, with onion rings, fries, or a salad on the side for each of us. Overall, it’s a pleasurable, fragrant, and delectable experience.
Spaccanapoli, on the other hand, is maybe one of the finest places to go for comfort cuisine. This pizza is tucked within the open, covered terrace over the neighboring pool area on Deck 11. Its classic, freshly prepared pizza pizzas were fantastic. With San Marzano tomatoes, Mozzarella di Bufala, Porcini Mushrooms, and 26-Month DOP Parmigiano Reggiano, I recommend the “Porcini E Carciofi.”
The “Diavola,” made with San Marzano tomatoes, fior di latte, spicy salami, fresh basil, and spicy extra virgin olive oil, is another choice. There are at least 15 options, five of which are from “Napoli” (Margarita, Bufalina, and Marinara, to name a few).
During my trip onboard Silver Moon, I did not eat at Silver Note, but I did order room service many times, mainly for breakfast and lunch. It is accessible 24 hours a day, seven days a week. My meals arrived on time and were precisely as I had requested. The room service menu is shown on the large screen thanks to the in-suite entertainment system.
The Silver Moon has arrived at Rhodes, Greece.
Foodies will certainly like Silversea’s Silver Moon’s S.A.L.T. concept, which includes aboard and shoreside “deep” culinary delving into local cuisine, beverages, and agricultural practices. Others, like myself, would certainly appreciate the opportunity to try a regional cuisine, learn how to make something, or have a regional drink.
I especially like the S.A.L.T. “tidbits” or lengthier “stories” that follow the S.A.L.T. “tidbits” that dig into historical, cultural, and culinary traditions. All are intended to assist visitors in becoming better acquainted with the local cultures and peoples of the area they are traveling, as well as to provide a deeper knowledge of the places they are visiting.
Silversea, however, offers an attractive variety of food in both S.A.L.T. and non-S.A.L.T. venues, from caviar to pizza, from local delicacies to worldwide favorites. So, whether you’re a serious foodie or just like a nice dinner after a long day of exploring onshore or relaxing onboard, you’ll find plenty of delicious choices on the new Silver Moon.
Read about Silver Moon in my past posts:
Silversea Cruises is a new cruise line that offers a unique experience. This company has a focus on local tastes and the environment, which makes it a great option for travelers who want to feel like they are traveling in an authentic way. Reference: silversea cruises advantages and disadvantages.
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