Princess Cruises’s brand new specialty dining restaurant, Bistro Sur La Mer, offers casual French bistro-style dining featuring menu items inspired by land and sea. In this post I share the Bistro Sur La Mer menu with photos and a review of our experience.
Bistro Sur La Mer Specialty Restaurant
Bistro Sur La Mer is the creation of Michelin-star chef, Emmanuel Renaut, who has previously worked in top restaurants including Claridge’s, Hotel de Crillon and Auberge de l’Eridan.
“I’m delighted to introduce La Mer to more Princess Cruises guests. My dishes are designed to satisfy every palate by bringing retro French classics and blending favourite ingredients with fresh and unique touches to make each dish memorable.”Chef Renaut
Which Princess ships have La Mer Restaurant?
La Mer is available on:
- Majestic Princess
- Sky Princess
- Enchanted Princess
The specialty restaurant is found on Deck 7 of the Piazza atrium, port side, offering sea views and alfresco seating.
How much is Bistro Sur La Mer on Princess Cruises?
Included in the cover charge is a welcome plate, appetiser, main course and dessert. Drinks are not included but I would recommend taking a look at the restaurants selection of dinner cocktails.
On Arrival to Bistro Sur La Mer
Once seated the welcome plate is brought to you featuring Frites de Polenta (polenta fries with fresh herbs) and Comme des Olives Vertes et Noires Chevre (fresh goat cheese ‘olives’).
The olives are not what they seem! The polenta fries were nicely seasoned and the ‘olives’ were a nice surprise to start the meal with a little bit of joy.
Bistro Sur La Mer Menu
Bistro Sur La Mer’s menu offers diners the option of La Mer or La Terre dishes (from the sea or land). This is offered for each course except dessert, giving you the option to have one, the other or a combination of both.
The good thing about this is that you can dine at the specialty restaurant more than once and have completely different experiences. Take a look at the full Bistro Sur La Mer menu below.
Bistro Sur La Mer Menu: Appetisers
The appetisers are divided into two sections: sea and land. La Mer dishes offer seafood and fish dishes.
|Bisque de homard||Lobster bisque garnished with scallops, mussels and quenelle|
|Tartare de Ahi||Hand-cut ahi tuna, parsley like a harlequin and vegetable fries|
|Filet de Saumon a la Parisienne||Lightly smoked cured salmon, deviled egg and hazelnut balsamic vinaigrette|
The lobster bisque is presented inside a pastry case that’s opened in front of you for a bit of theatrics. I enjoyed the flavour of the dish which wasn’t too overpowering. The quenelle added a touch of French cuisine to the bisque.
La Terre dishes are a mix of vegetable and meat options, including escargots. These are served differently to escargots I’ve had in the main dining room and instead of being served swimming in garlic butter, the escargots are encased in panko breadcrumbs.
|Salade de saison||Hard boiled egg, green beans, tomatoes, potatoes, black olives, extra virgin oil vinegrette with optional ahi tuna and anchovies|
|Cromesquis d’esgargot ail et fines herbes||Crispy escargots in panko bread crumbs, garlic and fresh herbs|
|Pate en Croute||“Chef Emanuel’s Aunt” home-style pate in savoury dough, fig and pear compote|
|Oeuf mollet Florentine||Poached egg, creamed spinach, mushrooms, comte cheese|
La Mer Main Courses
The main courses are separated on the menu by sea and land dishes.
|Quenelles de vivaneau et St Jacques||Red snapper and scallop mousseline, lobster orsels and lobster sauce|
|St Jacques roties||Roasted scallops, assorted garden vegetables with lemon butter sauce|
|Dos de bar roti sur un pain croustillant ratatouille sauce tomate et olive||Barramundi filet, crispy bread, braised vegetables, olive and tomato sauce|
|Le fish and chips de la Mer||La Mer’s fish and chips, garlic saffron and tartare sauce|
The lemon butter was poured over the dish once it arrived at the table. The scallops were excellent, typically they are jumbo scallops but due to it being a UK Seacation, supply issues meant that they were smaller. This didn’t take away anything from the dish because I just got more scallops!
Looking at the vegetables I was reminded of school dinners but on tasting them, I found that they were far from it. The vegetables were perfectly cooked and seasoned so don’t be put off by their appearance.
|Filet de boef poele||Beef filet mignon, sweet onion saute, red wine jus, hand-cut fries|
|Magret de canard||Seared duck breast, blackcurrant demi glace, butter braised carrots, creamy polenta|
|Jarret de veau a l’ancienne||Braised veal shank in morel and button mushroom cream sauce, rice pilaf|
|Gratinee de pomme de terre at fromages||Potato au gratin, mountain cheeses, comte and gruyere|
The veal dish was a little disappointing as the meat was a bit tough despite being slow cooked. The waiter was very kind in bringing a portion of scallops to accompany the dish for no additional charge.
Desserts on the La Mer Menu
The dessert menu was the most difficult choice as there were several options we could have chosen but we opted for the floating meringue and rum baba.
The meringue was soft and light. It was good to finish on a delicate dessert and the citrus centre worked particularly well with the custard and meringue.
|Ile flottante||Soft meringue, lemon and lime filling, egg custard|
|Mont Blanc Marron-Myrtilles||Sweet chestnut, blueberry gel, vanilla cream|
|Le Baba au rhum creme chantilly a la vanille||Rum baba, vanilla whipped cream|
|Barre chocolat||Chocolate bar, coffee sauce|
|Gelle de citron||Lemon and grapefruit crumble, orange blossom mountain beignet|
La Mer Cocktails List
Bistro Sur La Mer offers three special cocktails to accompany your meal:
- Champagne Rose ($21) – Grey Goose vodka, Nicholas Feuillatte Brut Reserve Champagne, cranberry juice and Bitter Truth rose water
- French 75 ($11) – Mionette Prosecco Brut Gold, Hennessey VSOP cognoc, simple syrup and pineapple juice
- French Martini ($10) – Grey Goose vodka, Chambord Black Raspberry liquer and pineapple juice
We chose to try the French Martini, which was included in our drinks package. It was sweet and smooth without tasting too much of alcohol. I could imagine that a few of these could get you into trouble though!
Final Thoughts on La Mer
Bistro Sur La Mer is a welcome addition to the specialty restaurants available on Princess Cruises. It may feel like a risk to some people to try a new restaurant and pay a cover charge but if you enjoy trying new food, it’s definitely worth it.
I was initially drawn to the menu, which is divided into La Mer and La Terre. As a lover of seafood I opted for these options on the menu but I would certainly return to try some of the land-based dishes.
The decor of the restaurant was contemporary and modern. I’ve heard some people share concerns about it being near the Piazza atrium but our experience wasn’t dampened by any extra noise. Sky Princess’s venues have been designed to be more open plan so that they are less closed off from the public areas.
The service we experienced was tentative and accommodating. I would advise you not to be put off by the menu being presented in French because our waiter was happy to answer any questions and explain the items on the menu we were most interested in.
There is an element of theatre throughout the meal with surprise olives, reveals and sauce being added to the dishes when they reach the table.
This specialty restaurant is different to other, more familiar ones, and although it hasn’t become my new favourite, it has taken second place!