MSC Preziosa will be christened in Genoa, Italy, on March 23 2013 and, with just over two months to go until the latest ship in the MSC Cruises’ fleet sets sail, the company today announced a new partnership.

MSC has recently signed an agreement with Eataly, the popular Turin-based chain founded in 2007 by Oscar Farinetti, which today counts several food and restaurant emporiums in Italy, Japan and the US, with plans to open new branches in Dubai, Turkey, Brazil and UK.
True to its Mediterranean roots, “MSC Cruises believes that good food is about more than just delicious meals, that it’s a real way of life, and that eating is above all about quality and diversity, experience and knowledge, discovery and sharing. Since the first MSC cruise ships set sail, the company has focused on choice, quality and strict control in terms of the sourcing and processing of products destined for the fleet’s restaurants, working hard to offer delicious, ethical dishes at sustainable prices.”

Eataly’s manifesto opens with the following declaration: “We’re in love with quality food and beverage. In love with their history, their tradition, the men and women who produce them, the places they come from.”

The enterprise was in fact founded upon the principles of the Slow Food philosophy, with its emphasis on local, artisanal producers, food education, accessibility and affordability, sustainable sourcing and production.

A shared attitude towards quality, traceable food and beverages and a strong conviction that they should be available to everyone at sustainable prices, and not just to a limited circle of privileged people, is the foundation of the new partnership between MSC Cruises and Eataly, the first step of which involves opening the first two Eataly restaurants at sea onboard the MSC Preziosa.

In the area that hosts the Tex Mex speciality restaurant on her Fantasia class sister-ships, MSC Preziosa will instead feature two entirely unique dining venues: the Eataly Restaurant and the Ristorante Italia.

With around 80 seats, the Eataly Restaurant will mirror Eataly’s original concept, creating a stylish, minimalist space where people can eat, buy and learn about the best Italian food. A choice of 18 dishes will be prepared and served at lunch and dinner, including pasta, vegetables, seafood, meat, cold cuts and cheese. Travellers on board MSC Preziosa will enjoy delicious, simple and top quality dishes, savoured in a relaxed, uncluttered and fun atmosphere, as per Eataly’s tradition.

Meticulously arranged aisles will showcase a varieties of products from olive oil to dried pastas from Gragnano (Na), artisanal sweets, wines without chemical ingredients, natural beverages and aged balsamics: the best excellences of Italian regions.

The exclusive 24-seat evening-only Ristorante Italia will offer a different ultra-high-quality ‘table d’hôte’ menu every night, especially conceived by Eataly chefs, with dishes made from Slow Food Presidia products – a foundation created to protect small producers and to preserve the quality of artisan products. In the ‘authoritative and informal atmosphere’ classic to Eataly’s spaces, where controlled, high quality raw materials are guaranteed and where staff couple professionalism with the simple, genuine relationship between people, MSC travellers can focus on the food itself, pairing each dish with a glass of wine and learning something new every day from their truly magnificent culinary journey.

The MSC Cruises and Eataly partnership will be officially inaugurated tomorrow, 19 January 2013, with the launch of a special contest in participating Eataly’s restaurants in Italy and US, in which clients will have the opportunity to win an MSC cruise.