Dual forces power the cuisine on Cunard Line’s iconic Queen Mary 2, where twins Nicholas and Mark Oldroyd serve as executive chefs.
Both twins brought their culinary skills to sea, joining Queen Elizabeth 2 in September 1999. Mark worked his way to chef de cuisine, managing all six galleys and serving on board for seven years before becoming executive chef of Cunard’s flagship Queen Mary 2. Nicholas also worked through the ranks before joining the opening team for Queen Victoria, becoming executive chef. Now as a resident on Queen Mary 2, he’s served as executive chef aboard all three Cunard ships.
The Oldroyd twins were born in East Yorkshire, England, before moving to North Yorkshire. Both attended Scarborough Yorkshire Coast College, receiving awards and gaining professional experience in France and at Michelin-starred restaurants. They joined forces to cater exclusive events at North Yorkshire Golf Club in Strensell, York.
Today they enjoy vacationing at their home in Kissimee, Fla., relaxing by the pool and, of course, dining out to discover new culinary innovations and concepts.
WHAT THREE GO-TO INGREDIENTS ARE ALWAYS IN YOUR HOME KITCHEN?
Nicholas Oldroyd: The finest Belgian chocolates, strawberries and coffee
Mark Oldroyd: Chai tea, ice cream (it must be Häagen-Dazs) and chicken
WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE SEASON FOR COOKING, AND WHY?
NO: Winter, because I love the festivities and traditions: the smell of mulled wine, Christmas midnight markets, roasting chestnuts, Christmas pudding with brandy sauce, wine, fattened roast turkey, pigs in blankets, roast goose and homemade game pie with all the artisan-style trimmings that go with a festive feast. And, last but not least, lots of Champagne and being with close friends and family.
MO: My favorite season is summer because food is at its best when it is kept simple and light but bursting with flavor. I have many memories of picking fresh strawberries in Yorkshire. The aroma and flavor are so natural, smelling wild notes of garlic in the woods of Dalby Forest. I also love meeting friends for barbecues — tasty grilled food cooked over the smoky charcoal and enhanced with aromatics, spices and rubs. Berry coolers and pool parties, summer is a season where families come together for a great time.
ASIDE FROM YOUR CURRENT POSITION, WHAT’S THE BEST JOB YOU’VE EVER HAD?
NO: One of my best jobs was when I was appointed the opening executive chef for Her Majesty the Queen. I met her in person, and my photo was in the tabloids. Being a twin, the newspaper had my name wrong and put Mark’s name by mistake.
MO: For a few years, I worked for Nestlé in York. I was in my element and felt like Willy Wonka. I love chocolate and the aroma married with notes of caramel, mint, praline and vanilla. However, the best decision I ever made was to work at sea. Queen Elizabeth 2 was the first ship I joined as a demi chef de partie. I loved traveling the world, working with different nationalities and, of course, tasting authentic cuisine from around the world. It has been a priceless experience, which I still enjoy.
WHAT’S THE FIRST MEAL YOU EVER COOKED?
NO: If I can remember that far back, it would have been with Mum at Malton Golf Club in North Yorkshire, and I believe it was Yorkshire pudding.
MO: The first meal I cooked was a roast beef Sunday lunch. It was memorable because my father likes everything well done. The beef was like shoe leather. The best thing was that he really enjoyed it, and he said, “That’s the way I like it!” As they say, the customer is always right. I still make the best Yorkshire pudding — it’s better than Nick’s!
United Airlines announces a number of new routes.
Lufthansa is starting an innovative new carbon offset program, Compensaid, which will allow customers to purchase CO2 neutral aviation fuels. The platform allows customers to replace the fossil fuel of their flights with sustainable aviation fuel.
The Luxury Collection again teamed with artist Sofía Sanchez de Beta to unveil an exclusive capsule collection, this time with 54 pieces inspired by the Arabian Desert and Emirati culture. The ready-to-wear line includes an array of separates created with Dubai’s climate in mind, such as lightweight blouses and tunics, flowing jumpsuits, long skirts and dresses.
Welcome to Rhodes, a medieval treasure beautifully preserved throughout the centuries. Rhodes is the capital of the Dodecanese, an island ideal not only for those who want to relax, but also for those looking for an action-packed holiday! With its bright green hills, rich green valleys and uninterrupted line of golden beaches, Rhodes is truly a blessed place. “The sun island” has more sunshiny days and milder temperatures throughout the year than any other location in Greece. It is, after all, one of the country’s easternmost places and among the first to welcome summer on its impressive beaches. Add in the excellent facilities for tourism, the island’s special blend of cosmopolitan and traditional, and numerous cultural and archaeological sites, the most important being the Medieval (Old) Town, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and you’ve got the perfect holiday destination. While on Rhodes, don’t miss a daytrip to nearby Sými. An island of sponge divers and seamen, Sými used to have 30,000 inhabitants before the Second World War and was the richest island in the Dodecanese, despite its small size. Today, Sými attracts many visitors thanks to its beautifully preserved Neo-Classical buildings and the famous Archangel Michael monastery at Panormitis.
Google announced last month it added additional features to its price comparison tool. The tool helps users plan trips and compare rates. The new features include one that shows whether the price of a planned flight plus accommodations is low, average or high.
Singapore Airlines launched its non-stop service between Singapore (SIN) and Seattle (SEA), Sept. 3. Seattle is Singapore Airlines’ fourth U.S. destination following Los Angeles (LAX), New York (EWR) and San Francisco (SFO) to receive non-stop service to and from Singapore.
For those without accessibility issues, going to the beach can be simple. There’s nothing to do but pack up your gear, head to the shore and walk out onto the sand. For those who may be inhibited, however, the beach poses more of a challenge.