La Cucina is located on deck 12 of the Norwegian Jade, past the buffet towards the back of the boat. Our first specialty dining experience of the cruise was on day 6. Surprisingly, the restaurant was only about a 1/3 full when we went. It wasn’t that large of a space, but nicely decorated to give it a rustic Italian look.
They get bonus points for handing me a black napkin for my black slacks instead of the typical white napkin.
A modest, but well crafted insalata fresca began the meal, along with under seasoned beef carpaccio that automatically improved after hitting it with some salt and pepper.
The 14 oz ribeye was huge, but under seasoned and undercooked. After a few minutes of trying to flag down our server she brought it back to the kitchen to get it touched up. The pork scallopini marsala was a great dish. Two boneless pork chops pounded thin and covered with a dark savory sauce and accompanied by tender gnocchi, green beans, and pancetta. I devoured every ounce of it. My kid for linguine with butter and loved it.
The meal ended with a thick and creamy lemon curd ricotta cheesecake with a milk chocolate reduction (e.g. chocolate sauce).
If you love dining out, I would recommend getting NCL’s specialty dining package. The food was a step up from the non-specialty restaurants, for sure.
Tampa, FL 33602