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31 minutes ago, PVD said:

I think the quesadillas are there also, which is also good news....

This is what I get for attempting this first thing in the morning.  Thanks for that catch.

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11 hours ago, Anderson said:

The "Land and Sea" combo that existed never did much for me (I think the term "Random Crap-cake" comes to mind), so the shift to a "straight" crabcake is a nice change.  Haven't properly had those in the diners for quite a while.  The only thing that surprises me a little is that if they've got crabcakes as part of the land and sea combo, they don't also offer a two-crabcake dinner option as well.

(Also, is my memory failing me or was there a crabcake-with-breakfast option they had about 5-6 years back?)

I really feel like the only people who ever order the “Land and Sea” are just sleeper passengers who get their meals free and just want to get the absolute maximum amount of food possible, even if they are not going to enjoy it or eat all of it.

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4 hours ago, scrollmaster said:
7 hours ago, tim49424 said:


I just got done with a trip to NOL last month and didn’t mind the food on the NB CONO, however took the Cardinal to the Crescent, in part to avoid the SB CONO’s menu. (Main reason I did it that way was to experience riding the Crescent period) The menus were exactly the same on the NB CONO as the Cardinal.....limited but I didn’t mind the beef on the Cardinal so I had it again on the CONO.

For someone who's only Amtrak experience is several long-distance trains I'm curious. On long distance trains such as the City of New Orleans do they still have a dining car you sit and eat with other Amtrak Riders but just has a limited menu?

I will add that I did ride the City of New Orleans in 1988. It was coach from New Orleans to Jackson. It was my first-ever train ride.

The CONO serves a very limited selection of heat-and-eat meals, which many members feel are the worst of any train in the Amtrak system, however it is still conventional table service and communal seating in the diner (well, technically a CCC).

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11 hours ago, Anderson said:

(Also, is my memory failing me or was there a crabcake-with-breakfast option they had about 5-6 years back?)

I believe you are correct. I think it was a breakfast sandwich.  I also believe it was very popular.  

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4 hours ago, VTTrain said:

For dinner, it looks like the shrimp biryani and the butternut squash risotto are gone.

For lunch the salad has changed.  No more goat cheese.

Breakfast looks to be the same.

I’m not sure about the biryani, but I can say that they have not been serving the risotto for MANY months (along with the gnocchi), despite them still being on the menu. But I guess it will be nice to have some actually accurate menus, even if the food really isn’t changing much.

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This is so much better than what I expected.  Just the fact that they went to the trouble of designing new menus (and attractive ones at that) bodes well for the future.

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50 minutes ago, SP&S said:

This is so much better than what I expected.  Just the fact that they went to the trouble of designing new menus (and attractive ones at that) bodes well for the future.

I agree.  I doubt that they would spend the money to redesign the menus if their goal was to promptly do away with long distance train service.  

While I am sympathetic to those who wish that the menus had different covers depending on the train, if Amtrak is going to cut costs this is an example of an entirely painless way to do it.  I am sure that having one menu doesn't save a ton of money, but every little bit helps.

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It could also help to keep a stock available in Chicago and other servicing centers for menus that have become grimy or bad-looking. Instead of needing to have a stock for each train (which lately seems to have meant no stock at all, just keep re-using them) they can stock some spare menus and put them on any train as needed.

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2 hours ago, VTTrain said:

I agree.  I doubt that they would spend the money to redesign the menus if their goal was to promptly do away with long distance train service.  

While I am sympathetic to those who wish that the menus had different covers depending on the train, if Amtrak is going to cut costs this is an example of an entirely painless way to do it.  I am sure that having one menu doesn't save a ton of money, but every little bit helps.

As someone in the business almost all of my life, I can tell you the retail cost of ordering 200 of 10 different menus vs. 2,000 of one identical menu is significant. That they were able to save that money while doing a complete design upgrade is worth commending Amtrak for.

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And as someone who designs posters for charters, and dinner menus for the same charters. Honestly it isn't that hard or costly to design one. I will say the menu looks better however.

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16 hours ago, Anderson said:

The "Land and Sea" combo that existed never did much for me (I think the term "Random Crap-cake" comes to mind), so the shift to a "straight" crabcake is a nice change.  Haven't properly had those in the diners for quite a while.  The only thing that surprises me a little is that if they've got crabcakes as part of the land and sea combo, they don't also offer a two-crabcake dinner option as well.

(Also, is my memory failing me or was there a crabcake-with-breakfast option they had about 5-6 years back?)

I remember the two crabcake dinner from some (yeah maybe 5 or 6) years ago.  Presuming you like crab, it was the best thing on the dinner menu, really good cakes prepared well.  One time on the CS, there was an off the menu breakfast special that was close to an eggs benedict but with one of the crabcakes. Yum!

Hopefully these are better than the crab and shrimp and whatever cakes they've had for a while.

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I think there was a similar special on the Meteor (I believe my brother got it the first time I dragged him onto the Meteor...that trip did a lot to sell him on Amtrak).

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7 hours ago, jebr said:

It could also help to keep a stock available in Chicago and other servicing centers for menus that have become grimy or bad-looking. Instead of needing to have a stock for each train (which lately seems to have meant no stock at all, just keep re-using them) they can stock some spare menus and put them on any train as needed.

On one train a while back, the diner had B&W photocopies of the menu!:unsure:

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Do miss the "Traditional Railroad French Toast" which I haven't seen in years.

 

 

On the Cardinal breakfast menu. I had it last month. It’s actually not too bad for being nuked. Not as good as fresh, however.

 

IMG_0452.thumb.JPG.e03fc573bc0ba58f9416f343f7a4bbc0.JPG

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6 hours ago, tim49424 said:

On the Cardinal breakfast menu. I had [French toast] last month. It’s actually not too bad for being nuked. Not as good as fresh, however.

So far as I am aware the Railroad French Toast has not been freshly prepared in over a decade.  That being said it handled the precooking, freezing, and reheating process surprisingly well.

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So far as I am aware the Railroad French Toast has not been freshly prepared in over a decade.  That being said it handled the precooking, freezing, and reheating process surprisingly well.

 

Actually my cousin had it on the Empire Builder in 2012. But still that’s a while ago.

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My wife and I were on trains 5 and 6 from Ottumwa to and from Denver last week.  Our servers said that they were serving the new menu although the they had not received the printed versions.  I had the thyme chicken which was served with an option of rice or potato along with a vegetable (green beans) on the return trip I had the rigatoni.  Both were very good.  My wife had the salmon  and was able to order just the crab cake on the return trip.  She liked both and thought the single crab cake was fine.  Both trains were full and the diners were very busy.  There was a good mix of sleeper and coach passengers who seemed to enjoy the "heated and old dining" option. The crew did a nice job.

 

Edited by como
Left out a pronoun!

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On 1/10/2019 at 2:38 AM, Anderson said:

The "Land and Sea" combo that existed never did much for me (I think the term "Random Crap-cake" comes to mind), so the shift to a "straight" crabcake is a nice change.  Haven't properly had those in the diners for quite a while.  The only thing that surprises me a little is that if they've got crabcakes as part of the land and sea combo, they don't also offer a two-crabcake dinner option as well.

(Also, is my memory failing me or was there a crabcake-with-breakfast option they had about 5-6 years back?)

They don't need all-crab seafood as there are already more than enough crabs on board. :giggle:

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11 hours ago, tim49424 said:

 

 

On the Cardinal breakfast menu. I had it last month. It’s actually not too bad for being nuked. Not as good as fresh, however.

 

IMG_0452.thumb.JPG.e03fc573bc0ba58f9416f343f7a4bbc0.JPG

It is sort of ironic that the train serving heat-and-eat meals out of an AmCan diner-lite is also the only one serving the rather beloved Railroad French Toast.

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54 minutes ago, tim49424 said:
5 hours ago, Devil’s Advocate said:
So far as I am aware the Railroad French Toast has not been freshly prepared in over a decade.  That being said it handled the precooking, freezing, and reheating process surprisingly well.

 

Actually my cousin had it on the Empire Builder in 2012. But still that’s a while ago.

I last had the Railroad French Toast on the diner-lite LSL in February 2018. It was so undercooked I gagged, and then when I asked if they could cook it a bit more and they brought it back to me, it was so overcooked it was like leather.

The last time I had the French Toast in an actual full service diner was on the southbound Meteor on June 29th (departed on the 28th but this was breakfast the next day), 2017. But by the time we boarded the northbound home on July 4th, they had replaced it with the pancakes. So clearly the Meteor lost RR French Toast sometime between June 29th and July 4th, 2017, and I imagine this also roughly the case for all the other routes with full dining cars.

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My last "French Toast Breakfast" was on the LSL when it was running diner-lite before it got the VL2 and boxes. I thought it was pretty good. I carry little gift bottles of real maple syrup that I get, makes travel that much better.

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I think the point DA was trying to make is that the french toast came out of a microwave instead of off a griddle, not that it wasn't offered at all.  The decade time frame lines up with my memory of when it changed.

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