Currently featured on all of APT's Concerto Class river ships, the intimate culinary experience known as the Erlebnis Chef's Table Restaurant is to be rolled out to all Aria Class ships in 2014 - as part of APT's 'Royal Experience,' which is perfect for travellers who wish to admire the majestic waterways of Europe in style.
Billed as a highlight of the cruising experience and offered at no additional charge, Erlebnis features a glass-enclosed kitchen through which diners can watch their personal chef prepare a six-course degustation menu. Although the restaurant only seats 24 diners, on a two week cruise for example, travellers will have the opportunity of enjoying the Erlebnis Restaurant twice. If you have a special occasion such as a birthday or wedding anniversary, the staff will be happy to take your reservation in advance to make the celebration all the more memorable.
The menu is designed by award-winning Executive Chef Primus Perchtold, who has won three gold medals at the European Championship of Culinary Art.
While Chef Perchtold is sure to introduce new flavours next year, in 2013 some of the dishes offered include fresh bread from the restaurant bakery served with garlic butter, pepperoncini tapenade and extra virgin olive oil. On arrival, guests are greeted by various 'Chef's Welcomes' such as tempura tiger prawns with sour cream chilli sauce and marinated salad with Japanese wasabi dressing, duck ragout with potato, and goose liver mousse.
The appetiser may be lemon pepper crusted salmon with spicy sour cream, which is followed by a soup dish. For main course, cruisers might savour grilled beef tenderloin with pepper sauce, porcini ragout, sautéed vegetables and truffle-mashed potato. To finish the meal desserts are served with a selection of international cheeses. Each course is perfectly matched with beautiful local wines.
Debra Fox is the APT General Manager Marketing.
"Erlebnis is designed to make our guests feel a million dollars. With fine food, wine and company served in an intimate setting, they'll enjoy a world class luxurious dining experience which has been personally designed by our award-winning executive chef," said Debra.
The cuisine served on an APT river cruise is a focal point of the journey. In 2012, APT became the only European river cruise line to be inducted into La Chaine des Rotisseurs, one of the world's most prestigious culinary organisations that was originally chartered in the 13th century and thrived until the French Revolution. The society was reborn in Paris in 1950 and now includes by invitation-only chefs, restaurateurs and hoteliers.
At the time, Debra Fox said membership was a significant recognition of the culinary standards offered on APT's river cruises.
"This really lifts the image of river cruise dining and we're proud to maintain our leadership role in developing the standards for this type of holiday," she said.
Apart from Erlebnis, holiday-makers can savour the delights on offer in the Verde Fine Dining Restaurant, the River Bistro, which is a casual dining affair and enjoy an al fresco barbeque lunch on the Sun Deck. Depending on your suite category, room service is also available.
APT's most popular European river trip is the Magnificent Europe, where both Aria and Concerto Class vessels travel between Amsterdam and Budapest along the Rhine, Main and Danube rivers - stopping to enjoy some of the continent's most iconic attractions. Along the way, cruisers take in the sights of Bamberg, Nuremberg, Melk and Vienna.
The voyage is made all the more exciting for travellers who sign up for a Concerto Class ship because of the revolutionary Twin Balcony Suites – where a glassed in conservatory-style area is perfectly complemented by a spacious external balcony. When the sun is shining, holiday-makers can enjoy the postcard-perfect European scenery from their private balcony.
The 135-metre Concerto Class ship was first introduced in 2010 when the Amadello took its maiden voyage - the Amaverde, Amabella and Amaprima soon followed. Next year, APT will add a fifth ship to their Concerto collection – the Amareina, which will boast twin balconies and of course the Erlebnis Restaurant.
Regardless of whether you choose to cruise on a Concerto or Aria Class vessel, APT is determined to ensure that all passengers are treated like royalty and given an incredible European river experience.
"Our pledge to guests is that when they travel with APT they will be treated like royalty. That means having every little detail taken care of, delivering a highly personalised service, giving them access to people and places that other travellers can't reach and catering to their every need. It's all about pampering, no matter which suite you choose. All our guests have to do is sit back and enjoy the ultimate, most luxurious river cruising experience possible," said Debra.