Regent to infuse Puglia’s culinary scene for new menus

Refined traditional Italian cooking methods and hospitality for Seven Seas Grandeur

Regent Seven Seas Cruises has revealed highlights of a refined menu being developed for one of the cruise line’s most beloved restaurants, Sette Mari.

The new culinary offerings will be fully unveiled during Seven Seas Grandeur’s inaugural season in November 2023 and will then be integrated across Regent Seven Seas Cruises’ soon-to-be six-ship fleet.

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With a focus on heritage, Franco Semeraro, Senior Vice President of Hotel Operations and his culinary team, including Bernhard Klotz, Vice President of Food & Beverage and Wolfgang Maier, Senior Director Culinary travelled to the Puglia region of Italy, the area from which Franco and his family hails, to draw inspiration for the project.

Their culinary expedition was documented in a short film (view it below). The film captures the essence of Sette Mari’s dining experience – a celebration of the long, lingering family meal, with exquisite Mediterranean cuisine, enhanced by the company of loved ones and beautiful surroundings.

“I was already excited to launch Seven Seas Grandeur at the end of 2023, but now knowing what we have in store with Sette Mari’s refined recipes, the anticipation to sail onboard will be even greater,” said Jason Montague, President and Chief Executive Officer, Regent Seven Seas Cruises. “An Unrivaled Experience calls for exquisite cuisines and I could not be prouder of our incredible team and the unrivaled culinary experiences they create and deliver for our guests with every meal, on every sailing.”

While in Italy, Franco and his team visited a number of “Masserias” – farmhouses found on the estates in Puglia, built around the 16th century – discovering century-old cooking techniques and local ingredients.

The team explored the cheese-making process of mozzarella, stracciatella and burrata at Masseria Conte; practiced the skill of olive oil production at La Montalbanese – which houses the oldest mill in Italy dating back to the 1200s – and tasted a wide range of oils which is a staple ingredient in Puglia cuisine; and perfected fresh pasta making techniques at Il Capriccio.

In addition, the Regent culinary team spent time cooking alongside the family team behind Osteria Sant’Anna which was a lesson in how to bring the familial experience to the table. They also cooked up an exquisite multi-course meal with freshly caught fish and seafood for friends and family at Lido Bizzarro and furthered their understanding of the Mediterranean style of “living and eating” in Masseria Salamina’s outdoor kitchen.

Seven Seas Grandeur will embody a 30-year Heritage of Perfection, which is why I explored my own culinary heritage,” said Franco Semeraro, Senior Vice President of Hotel Operations, Regent Seven Seas Cruises. “I wanted the team to truly experience the hospitality of the Puglia region, not just come away with a few recipes. Our mission was to enrich our existing knowledge of techniques, acquire new skills and discover new ingredients, absorbing the family philosophy that the master chefs of the region apply to their craft, which is translated into a unique dining experience.”

Refined or new dishes on the menu will include:

  • Bruschetta al pomodoro
  • Zucchine alla poverella
  • Cavatelli ai frutti di mare
  • Insalata di panzanella alla Masseria Salamina
  • Cozze gratinate al forno
  • Branzino in agrodolce
  • Pasticcini alla mandorle
  • “Chef Nino” Cioppino
  • Focaccia con pomodorini

With Regent’s entire fleet sailing the globe, Semeraro and Klotz’s teams will focus on perfecting the new and refined dishes for Seven Seas Grandeur’s launch in November 2023.

“A process such as this usually takes around 12 months to perfect,” explained Bernhard Klotz, Vice President Food & Beverage, Regent Seven Seas Cruises. “The next steps will be to confirm all the new ingredients and establish their supply, finalise the menu and recipes and then train our incredible chefs across the fleet.”

Sette Mari’s menu refinement is just one of the many ways Regent Seven Seas Cruises continues to further elevate and refresh its culinary offerings by marrying time-honoured culinary traditions with the evolving tastes and preferences of global travellers. In addition to Sette Mari, the World’s Most Luxurious Fleet will also elevate the menus of its gourmet restaurants, Compass Rose, Chartreuse, Prime 7, and Pacific Rim which will also be unveiled on Seven Seas Grandeur.

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