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Food n drink on steam packet


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The dining room staff and kitchen staff were all either back up radio operators, or certificated lifeboatmen, or the like; and with crew living on board, they primarily cooked for/served the crew. Service to passengers was a sideline. Of course the capacity of the boats was much greater passenger numbers wise, than now, and so you had to have more of the safety staff, even although, in winter, boats capable of carrying, and licenced for 1400 plus regularly sailed with 100 or fewer passengers.

 

Of course there were also the infamous deck buffets with curled sandwiches, cast iron meat pies, plastic wrapped genoa cake and tea so strong and scalding hot you had to have three spoons of sugar and wait 10 mins before drinking, which is what the fare paying passengers were expected to use.

 

I remember being in a VW campervan on deck of the old old Ben my Chree in about 1961 or 2, craned on and off at both ends, and my mum lighting up the gas to boil a kettle and brew tea, right opposite a deck buffet.

 

My grandparents took me on various Fleetwood and Llandudno day trips (Llandudno on the Liverpool and North Wales ships St Serriol or St Tudno and even on a day trip granny had a small suit case with three thermos flasks of tea and enough sandwhiches, home made savoury, and sweet, pies to fed an army

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Just buy one of the Steam Racket's £43 bacon baps you cheapskate.

The dining room staff and kitchen staff were all either back up radio operators, or certificated lifeboatmen, or the like; and with crew living on board, they primarily cooked for/served the crew. Ser

For the prices they charge, there is no reason why the management shouldn't go overboard with the food.

I don't eat when I'm on the boat. Not only will I not pay through the roof to eat a load of rubbish served by the Steam Racket Company, but I find the boats all stink of a horrible cleaning agents, plus the interior decor is absolutely grotesque, and being in a room with people -- with hardly a Manx accent among them -- coughing and sneezing and farting just puts me right off anyway.

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Last time I was on the Ben I found the food a tad expensive but quality was OK. There weren't many passengers, the food had been freshly cooked. All-in-all £1 cheaper would be better value...

 

40 years ago the food was (sometimes) excellent.

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I have found the IOMSPC ticket prices comparable/cheaper and their services superior to those ferries serving the Channel Islands. On the odd occasion I have splashed out for a cabin I have found them to be worlds apart - IOMSPC clean and with TV to while away the hours - no such luxuries on the Channel equivalent for similar cost. The food - is what is is... could it be better - yes, but it doesn't pretend to be haute cuisine...sadly pretty standard fayre seems to be across the board these days.

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No problem taking your own sandwiches/crisps etc on.

 

Can't say I have an issue with the food for what it is really. Pizza, curry etc comparable to a service station I would say and I don't think you can really expect much more.

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and that is it, isn't it. Its motorway service station type fare. Its no more expensive and of much the same mediocre standard. You could wait and get onto the motorway and stop at Forton, the food would be no better and more expensive. we sail Portsmouth Bilbao. The Pont Aven flagship has a proper restaurant, silver service, and a self serve, the food is good but very expensive, the Cap Finisterre has a reasonable restaurant, all silver service, and a snack bar and in summer a top deck burger bar. The prices are eye watering and you are on board for 24 hours en route to Spain.

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It's macro-economic forces that mean you now pay £5 for 2 heavily processed sausages on a cheap spongy bun. The cost of labour has risen dramatically, as has the cost of victuals. You can no longer hire competent cooks for a pittance to prepare reasonably priced good quality produce. You can just about afford to pay two latvian immigrants minimum wage to reheat cheap, mass-produced pap. Gone are the days of poached Greenland halibut, and apple pie made from scratch.

 

When I worked on the Seacat Isle of Man, we got to see the cost figures once. A Bacon bap had a cost price of £0.69, while the Full Breakfast was £0.99 to produce, all in. May have gone up a little since, but I guess so have their menu prices.

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There's really no excuse for this - it's just lazy catering by companies (in this case the Steam Packet) who, once they've got your custom, don't give a monkeys about creating a good impression with food, service, etc

 

I agree the food on the channel ferries is for the most part just as bad. Gary Rhodes was supposed to be doing something on one of the channel lines - wonder what happened to that, maybe he was lost at sea

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It's macro-economic forces that mean you now pay £5 for 2 heavily processed sausages on a cheap spongy bun. The cost of labour has risen dramatically, as has the cost of victuals. You can no longer hire competent cooks for a pittance to prepare reasonably priced good quality produce. You can just about afford to pay two latvian immigrants minimum wage to reheat cheap, mass-produced pap. Gone are the days of poached Greenland halibut, and apple pie made from scratch.

 

When I worked on the Seacat Isle of Man, we got to see the cost figures once. A Bacon bap had a cost price of £0.69, while the Full Breakfast was £0.99 to produce, all in. May have gone up a little since, but I guess so have their menu prices.

 

& the selling prices?

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One other thing companies do is outsource the catering. Why bother taking the risk of making food when you can get someone else to do it? Charge a rent for the space and you have guranteed income without the risks and overheads of employing staff directly. The contractor then has to hike his prices to cover the rent and slash his margins too. This produces the results we've seen at airports all over the world.

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