Barbara Muckermann is dismissive. “We did celebrity chefs 20 years ago,” says the Silversea Cruises Chief Marketing Officer.
“Now the cruise industry is ready for our new food trend, S.A.L.T.”
S.A.L.T stands for Sea And Land Taste. It will debut on Silverseas’s new luxury ship, Silver Moon in August next year, followed by Silver Dawn in 2021. It will offer travellers the richest gastronomic experience on board a ship as well as on shore.
Curated with Adam Sachs, the former editor-in-chief of Saveur magazine, S.A.L.T will focus on experiencing different cruise destinations through the taste of local foods.
“The cuisine and menu changes as the scenery and culture of each destination changes. So what you are tasting on board will be tied up with the experience on shore,” says Mr Sachs, director of S.A.L.T.
When guests embark on shore excursions, they will learn how the ingredients are sourced and cooked in traditional style from local experts. They will also learn to appreciate regional ingredients and experience local food and drink cultures first-hand.
The innovative new program will unlock immersive culinary experiences for guests. It will elevate the role of food and showcase the entire ecosystems around the culinary cultures of the world.
There are three components to the program:
S.A.L.T Lab – not so much a cooking school but an informal centre where passengers can learn how to cook under the supervision of the chef on board and attend lectures.
S.A.L.T Bar to match the food with local beers, spirits, juices and wine from Silversea’s “biggest complimentary range of fine wines at sea.”
S.A.L.T Kitchen where 154 guests are seated in “whispered luxury” to taste the cuisine prepared.
Ms Muckermann says that the line has increased its supply of fresh berries, one of the most expensive products as well the supply of lobsters and tenderloin steaks.
Both Ms Muckermann and Mr Sachs were in Sydney recently to showcase S.A.L.T sample offerings at select restaurants in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Auckland.
Cruise Passenger sat down to a specially curated tasting menu at Bacco Restaurant, which started with a choice of Antipasti of burrata, scapece and toasted pepitas or cuttlefish, nduja and black olive crumb; plates of gnocchi with pecorino and pappardelle with lamb ragu to share; a main course of porchetta (pork) with braised apple or grilled swordfish with charred broad beans and gremolata, sides of roquette salad and potatoes with garlic and rosemary and ending with vanilla panacotta with fresh strawberry.
It was a delicious, gastronomic feast, particularly appealing to adventurous foodies.
“The menu has been inspired by Trieste where Silver Moon will be launched next year,” says Mr Sachs.
Australia is Silversea’s third biggest market after the US and UK.
“Australia expects to overtake UK and take second place soon,” Ms Muckermann added.