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Our gluten free experience with Norwegian Cruise Line

By Albert Kohl

Cruise Line in Norway
Norwegian Cruise Line. Courtesy of Jeaneeem

My girlfriend, daughter, and I took a cruise with Norwegian Cruise Line in Dec 2011.

While my girlfriend and I are gluten intolerant, my daughter is a celiac. She is also highly allergic to onions.

We explained our situation at the time of booking the cruise. The lady at the other end of the phone was very helpful in making notes on all our needs.

When we arrived at the ship, we had note to see the head Maitre'd. We explained to him our needs and allergies. From that point on, he was ahead of the game.

The first night we ate in one of the specialty restuarants. On his suggestion of who to talk to to inform them of our needs. The waiter there was already aware of them and very helpful in suggestions.

In the main dining room, we would always be shown the menu for the next day. We would be told what items could be prepared to meet our needs. If we chose to eat in another restuarant, we were given contact names and told to meet with as early as possible to give them a chance to make sure our order was properly prepared.

At every meal the would automatically serve bread to the table. Ours was always gluten free with butter that said it too was gluten free. At one point they ran out of bread for us and made a special trip into one of our port of calls to purchase a supply to finish off the cruise.

One dinner that really stands out for us was our second dinner in the main dining room. My daughter ordered something mexican. When it arrived, it had salsa made with onions. Before we knew what was happening, her plate was removed and we could hear the maitre'd chewing the chef out in spanish. Her dinner reappear ten minutes later freshly made minus the salsa.

As you can see, I can not say enough praise as to how we were treated on the ship. Off ship, let me say it was an adventure in trial and error. Wish I had known about this site so we could have printed your cards.


Wherever you're going, remember to take a free gluten free restaurant card with you.

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