American Queen Offers Holiday Cruises With Local Flavor

Five holiday season sailings accent Cajun and Creole Christmas traditions By: Marilyn Green
Clients can cruise with American Queen this holiday season. // (c) American Queen Steamboat Company
Clients can cruise with American Queen this holiday season. // (c) American Queen Steamboat Company

The Details

American Queen Steamboat Company 
The American Queen Steamboat Company is offering holiday cruises with Cajun and Creole Christmas traditions celebrated onboard. Five Old Fashioned Holidays voyages are available from New Orleans roundtrip or between New Orleans and Memphis, Tenn. The itineraries offer guests authentic holiday experiences including the spectacular old Louisiana tradition of bonfires on the levees, special Christmas shows in the Grand Saloon, door-decorating contests and a visit from Santa Claus and his elves.  

Seasonal dining also combines traditional American favorites with local delicacies and decadent desserts, highlighted by a Creole Reveillon Christmas Dinner, prepared by culinary director and celebrity chef Regina Charboneau and her team.

“I am delighted to be introducing the Creole Reveillon experience so that our guests onboard can enjoy the holiday recipes passed on from my great Aunt Nan Marie,” said Charboneau. “The beauty of the Reveillon is that it awakens the senses with food and celebrates the joys of Christmas and the New Year.”

The recipes used are a first glance at Charboneau’s newest book, Mississippi Current. 

A typical Reveillon menu served in homes along the Mississippi River or the fine restaurants of New Orleans’ French Quarter included Daube glace or veal grillades, egg dishes, breads, puddings and often included turtle soup and oysters, with an abundance of wines, cordials and fortified drinks. As the Reveillon is revived on the American Queen steamboat, chef Charboneau’s menu will include sazerac and champagne cocktails, tomato aspic with fried oysters, deviled eggs with lump crabmeat and caviar, pheasant gumbo, pork grillades over savory grits, almond tarts and bouche Noel. 

“This December, guests on the American Queen will be immersed in holiday traditions celebrated by generations in the Lower Mississippi River region,” CEO Jeffrey D. Krida explained. “Regina will share both her own experiences and those traditions she has extensively researched for historical authenticity.”

Five-night Old Fashioned Holidays fares begin at $1,395 and seven-night cruises start at $1,995. All include a one-night pre-voyage hotel stay, shore tours in all ports, complimentary wine and beer with dinner and other amenities.

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