Corkman Derek McKnight plays key role in Royal Caribbean’s Food & Beverage Innovation.
We love to see our own doing well abroad and representing the country, so it is great to see Ballinlough-man Derek McKnight recently appointed Food and Beverage Director on Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas.
Derek trained in Rockwell Catering College and Cork Institute of Technology before he went to Stuttgart, Germany, to continue his culinary training. He first joined the cruise industry in 1989, where he spent seven years as Executive Sous Chef onboard the QE2. In 1996, Derek moved to the Cayman Islands and opened Cayman’s first 5-star hotel, The Westin Casarina Resort, as an Executive Chef. Following five years on dry land, in which time he opened his own restaurant and also served as Executive Chef at The Maritime Hotel in Bantry, Cork, he returned to the seas in 2008 and took up the position as Executive Chef on the world’s largest cruise ship, Allure of the Seas.
In his current position as Food and Beverage Director, Derek manages the overall food and beverage function onboard, which includes 24 food outlets ranging from three fine dining restaurants and eight themed speciality restaurants to a 3,000-cover three-tier dining room, serving on average 80,000 meals a day.
Restaurant choices onboard Allure of the Seas include fresh sushi at Izumi; delicious hamburgers at Johnny Rockets; the juiciest steaks at Chops Grille; and something special at 150 Central Park by Michael Schwartz. No matter what you are hungry for, you will find it onboard Allure of the Seas!