The votes are in, the ballots have been counted, and we have the winners for our Oceania Cruises “Favorite Appetizers.” Tantalize your taste buds and pique your appetite with these delicious appetizers. If you haven’t sampled them all yet, be sure to order them next time you’re on board!

In first place, we have a tie with two delectable dishes from Red Ginger and Jacques.

Avocado Lobster Salad (Red Ginger) – A salad of diced avocado, tuna and hamachi marinated with sesame seeds, shiso vinegar, yuzu juice and maldon salt, placed on top of a crispy lotus root and garnished with a slice of poached rock lobster tail. This dish is served with den miso sauce and garnished with affila cress.

A suggested wine pairing would be a white wine such as the Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc from Marlborough, New Zealand.  The tropical fruits aromas add complexity to the dish, and the lemon zest notes pair with all of the seafood elements.

Escargots à la Bourguignonne (Jacques) –Tender, cooked escargots baked in their shell with a Burgundy  garlic herb butter and served with a crusty baguette, which is perfect to soak up the melted garlic herb butter.

A perfect match for this savory dish is the earthy Joseph Drouhin Pommard from Burgundy, France.

Appetizers from Toscana and Grand Dining Room were voted second and third on the poll.

Carpaccio di Manzo (Toscana) – A very thinly sliced raw beef tenderloin served with an olive oil and lemon emulsion with aged Parmigiano Reggiano, cracked black pepper, fleur de sel and garnished with baby arugula leaves.

The soft tannins and confined cherry aromas of Antinori Castello della Sala Pinot Nero IGT from Umbria, Italy is the perfect match for this exquisite dish.

Soft Shell Crab Tempura with Roasted Cherry Tomato Aioli (Grand Dining Room) – This soft-shell crab is dipped in a delightful tempura batter and then deep fried until golden and crispy. The dish is served with a roasted cherry tomato aioli – an emulsion of egg yolks, garlic, olive oil, lemon and roasted cherry tomatoes.

Our chefs recommend pairing this appetizer with a full-bodied chardonnay such as the Lincourt Vineyards Chardonnay, Santa Rita Hills from Santa Barbara, California to balance the flavor with the acidity of the roasted tomatoes and the tempura.

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