Yacht Chefs Share Their Weirdest Food Requests

18 May 2021 By Laura Dunn

Although there are plenty of luxurious meals served on yachts without incident, there are also those charter guests with some interesting food requests, just to keep things interesting.

Sea slug

"The strangest request I've ever received is probably to cook a sea slug that the young kids picked up off the ocean floor... It was a joke in the end, but I made them cookies with a worm coming out of one of them, while the others were filled with jam."  Anonymous

Cooking for pets

“Cooking for guests’ pets — ‘The same as we are eating, please.’ Oh, a fifteen-course tasting menu for your cat? Erm, no.”  Executive Chef James Howard, M/Y Latitude

Chicken carpaccio

"One guest once asked me to serve chicken carpaccio. I always adopt a 'yes, can do' attitude toward yachting, but I had to let him down with a big no."  Anonymous

Chicken noodle soup

“Chicken noodle soup with no chicken.” Sole Chef Thomas Dean, M/Y Vida

Cake from a box

“The strangest request I’ve ever received was from a charter client who asked me for cake from a box. Whatever makes them happy, I guess!” Head Chef Carlos Concha, M/Y Magna Grecia

Freshly peeled walnuts

“The strangest request I’ve ever received is to have thirty freshly peeled walnuts, soaking in water, ready at all times. In other words, I had to peel the skin off thirty walnuts every single day, for eighteen days. Peeling walnuts is a very tedious job, especially when you’re busy with more important meals — they only ate the walnuts one or two times.”  Head Chef Alicia Mold, M/Y Okto 

Hokkaido melon

"On a previous yacht, I had to organise a melon in Italy for a guest onboard. Not a difficult task in August. However, the guest wanted one from Japan – a very rare strain of Hokkaido melon. It took more than six days, many emails, phone calls, tenders and a helicopter flight to bring the melon on board, but we did it. The guest did not touch it in the end!" Anonymous

Liquid diet

I have had a group of females request a liquid diet, and no, not the good kind of liquid diet…the kind where your beautiful filet mignon with jus and charred asparagus is obliterated by a blender! All week! The personal trainer in me struggled with this concept, never mind the chef in me. Another less strange and more mortifying request was having to slaughter live chickens on the swim platform for a fresh, very fresh, curry.” Chef Amber-Rose Mercer, M/Y La Pace

Dead baby shark

“The worst request I had is when a guest gave me a dead baby blue shark to cook. I felt really bad because it was already dead, but I didn’t have the heart to cook it and, in the end, I had to toss him back into the ocean.”  Chef Emily Cabanas, M/Y Pura Vida

Vegan Lobster

“The strangest guest request I’ve ever had was during a barbecue on the beach where we served fresh lobster with garlic butter. A vegan guest was happy to have the fresh lobster but absolutely no garlic butter!” Chef Lee Easdon, M/Y Nero

Perculiar Allergies

“We once had a charter guest who had a very strange list of allergies: blackberry, canola oil, cayenne pepper, chickpeas, cilantro, couscous, dairy, flaxseed, gluten, hazelnut, kiwi, lemon, mungbeans, mussels, onions, pistachio, poppy seed, rapeseed, soy, strawberry, tofu, vegetable cheese.”  Sole Chef Trevor Steyn, S/Y Zenji

No garlic, onion, olive oil, salt or herbs

"The strangest request I received was Italian food with no garlic, onion, olive oil, salt or herbs (except basil, which could be put in whole and steeped but had to be removed before serving), Needless to say, that job did not last long."  Anonymous

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