SHARE with Curtis Stone and Princess Cruises

I was born into a 100% Italian family and I have to tell you that food is VERY important to us. Core to our culture is sharing great food with family and friends – it’s all about getting together no matter the occasion.

I’ve tried to teach our boys the same values.  This caused problems in their early childcare days when they would try to eat (read: steal) the other children’s lunch.  Their confused teachers wondered why the boys were going on a daily food rampage of other kids lunchboxes; but at the end of the day they were just doing what we’ve always done.

For these reasons, I was pretty excited to be invited to attend an exclusive debut tasting of Chef Curtis Stone’s first local restaurant called SHARE. The name alone sounded VERY promising!

Even better,  this was to be Curtis’ first restaurant at sea and was onboard Princess Cruises refurbished Sun Princess.

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It’s funny how we all love Curtis but most of us, me included, have not had the chance to taste his food.  My parents were fortunate enough to meet him many years ago when he was the Chef at a celebrity event at RACV ( then Royal Pines Resort on the Gold Coast).  They knew that I was a huge fan, and asked him to sign his latest cookbook for me.   Thanks to my lunch at SHARE – I now have two signed books from Curtis – making me a very happy foodie indeed! 🙂

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The foooooood!

Ok, lets get straight to the important part of this blog post…what was the food like? Well once I took my eyes off the great Aussie wine selection (#WhoLetTheMumOut), I quickly focused on the food.

The answer…amazing!  If you could see me now you’d note that i’m still drooling.

Highlights from the menu included the charcuterie board, bread and butter pudding, truffle potato gratin, a burrata and tomato salad (OMG this was to die for) and Curtis’ favourite dish – roasted king crab leg which was yet another taste sensation.

 

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The vibe at SHARE:

There’s nothing worse than going to a restaurant and not feeling comfortable.  I have eaten in some of the world’s best restaurants and quite frankly even if the food is fantastic, if the atmosphere and service isn’t right it leaves me cold. I found SHARE to be warm, welcoming and most importantly homely.

An example is this communal table that sits central in the restaurant but at a reasonable distance from the other tables.  I would love to reserve this for my family one day and I know that we’d have a great time.

Everything at SHARE has been purposely placed by Curtis and his team ready for their guests to make great holiday memories.

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It’s worth mentioning also that even the music playlist has been curated by Curtis and just like the travel momentos that he has personally added to the restaurants decor, the music is not pretentious, it’s just playing in the background subtly adding to the fantastic feel.

TIP: Make sure you look for Curtis’ first ever recipe which is on display at SHARE.

What I liked most about SHARE:

If we were cruising Sun Princess i’d make sure that we ate here almost every night.  The food focuses on the use of fresh ingredients and is 5 star but with a twist…

…It is flexible and  you don’t have to book in for a full three course meal to dine there, you are welcome to have a few share plates and a glass of wine to get your evening started.

It’s the perfect place to spoil yourself either as a couple or with family and friends.  SHARE is a make it what you want of it space, and everyone who loves food and good company is sure to love it.

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Did I meet Chef Curtis Stone?

Before anyone else asks me….no. I. did. not. meet. Curtis. Stone. BUT he did send through a very personalised video message to welcome us and explain the vision behind SHARE.  Bubbles and freshly shucked oysters on the pool deck certainly helped us not to miss him too much.

So where was Curtis? For the curious, Curtis is in the midst of opening another restaurant (it’s in Hollywood and called Gwen)- so I guess we’ll forgive him! Keep up the good work Chef!

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The restaurant and partnership was however warmly introduced to our small group by Princess Cruises Vice President Australia and New Zealand Stuart Allison and our meal was expertly prepared by Executive Chef Christian Dortch.  Some very impressive company indeed.

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So what’s Sun Princess like?

I didn’t get to see too much of the ship but from what I did see it looked like there were some lovely spots just waiting for someone (me) to indulge in some serious relaxation and me time. I also spied a New Zealand Ice Cream outlet for “the kids” …

Sun Princess Features:

  • Pools: 4 pools and 5 whirlpool spas
  • Two main show lounges
  • Seven lounges/bars for food/drinks and entertainment
  • A Sanctuary Retreat – #mememe!
  • Movies Under The Stars on the big screen – always a treat for kids
  • A sports deck including an outdoor wrap-around promenade deck that allows you to walk around the entire ship. ps. Two laps of the ship equals 1km!
  • A multitude of dining outlets of course including SHARE by Curtis Stone
  • Youth centers and more… basically you will not be bored on this ship.

With all of those facilities just waiting to be explored, I didn’t want to get off the ship once lunch was over. Unfortunately no one wanted to have the hard conversation with customs for me!

As a final note, I should mention that Sun Princess was most recently refurbished in April 2016 and I can confirm that it’s looking good.

It has capacity for 2010 passengers over 14 decks, which is a great size for families.

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Details: 

You can experience SHARE only on Princess Cruises: Sun Princess.

Sun Princess sails all year round from Brisbane, Sydney and Fremantle to New Zealand, the South Pacific, South East Asia, Papua New Guinea and around Australia.

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Credits:

I was a guest at SHARE on the Sun Princess thanks to Princess Cruises.

All opinions are our own and accurate at the time of publication.

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