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Here's how a typical dinner at sea goes. After you are seated in the dining room drink orders are taken and your server presents the evening's menu. Dinner usually consists of six or seven courses from appetizers to desserts. Can't decide between shrimp cocktail and paté? Have both. Can't choose between steak and shrimp? Have both. Your server wants happy diners. A pleasant request is almost always accommodated. (You can even have doubles on Lobster Night!)
If you are not a foodie, don't worry. There are healthy choices on the menu at every meal. If you have food allergies or require a special menu, notify the cruise line at least three weeks before the cruise. Otherwise, be adventurous. Try new dishes. If you are not sure what something on the menu is, ask your server. He or she will do everything reasonable to ensure that you enjoy meals onboard. If you do not care for the food or it is not cooked to your request, it is acceptable to politely request a different serving.
If you are not accustomed to dining with multiple courses and a vast array of silver and glassware, just remember the old adage, “outside in.” Use your utensils from the outside in toward your plate as courses come to the table. Servers will remove used silverware after each course. Also remember “eat to the left, drink to the right” and you'll never have problems remembering which bread plate belongs to you.
Although the days of extravagant buffets are over on most cruises, each cruise line usually hosts one magnificent showcase buffet toward the end of a cruise. Even if you can't eat another bite, bring your camera. It is remarkable gastronomic photographic moment.