Los Angeles (July 9, 2009) – Professional crews, especially those who are making the trip with a diet of freeze-dried food, don’t talk about their meals. They talk about what sails they have up and how many miles they have ticked off every day. The frontrunners are keeping track of the records they are setting or have the potential to beat. Assuming they can find time to boil water, pour it into a pot, stir it up and ladle it out, they are not talking about it. The crew that finished completed a nine-month circumnavigation during the Volvo Ocean Race only to catch an airplane and join Alfa Romeo are hoping that Alfa Romeo will be dockside before they dive into their stores and pull out the “stainless steel tuna”. That’s what the crew that refer to the freeze-dried food that they acquired from Ericsson’s left over Volvo Ocean Race provisions.
All male crews with no galley slave and hundreds of thousands of sea miles among them spend a lot of time devising a party theme to make their meals seem more interesting.
From Chasch Mer, the same crew that had a festive July 4th bash complete with red, white and blue paper plates:
“Dateline: Mid-Pacific. The Transpac Race Halfway Party for the Santa Cruz 50 racing yacht Roy's Chasch Mer took place this afternoon at the well-known epicurean resort and spa, Domaine Erique…
The party got underway with the crew decked out in pirate scarf headgear, eye patches, earrings, leis, etc. with ukuleles, palm tree wind charms, and other paraphernalia. Bar service consisted of "MerTais," Puerto Rican rum with Tang a l'orange. The main hors d'oeuvre was pineapple queso quesadillas picante, which were quickly devoured by the attendees. This was followed by "Tahitian War Paddles" - celery stalks stuffed with pineapple chunks and beurre d'peanut.”
For crews with a chef on board, food is the highlight of their day and often gets first mention in their transmittals.
“We left off before lunch yesterday and it was a wonderful lunch with fresh fruit and whole wheat with ham with either Swiss or cheddar cheese cooked in a hot pan with a little butter on it to brown the bread a very delicious meal. Dinner was a fresh spinach salad with sliced red peppers and onions the main course included stuffed pasta shells filled with alfredo crab meat sauce and a slice of soda bread.”
“Suzie is also performing magic by making ice when we charge the batteries and make water. I think we might be in for another surprise.”
From Addiction, where Donna, Lindsey’s mother, is minding the kitchen:
“Yesterday for lunch my mom made some really good ham, egg, and cheese breakfast buritos, it was yummy! i slept through dinner, but what ever envelop surprise it was smelt good.”
Early in the race, there was talk of improving hook, line and sinker combinations so that some of the boats could reel in their meals. That chatter has died down also now that everyone in the fleet is sailing in breeze.
Before the start, a survey of many of the Division III, IV and V boats indicated that many provisioned for 10 days of warm meals, plenty of cereals, breads and snacks. Stay tuned to the blogs that are out there to see whether the smaller boats have enough nourishment to finish out the race without resorting to praying that fish will jump out of the water and land on their decks. One thing is certain; everybody, even the Artemis crew who admits that they are very particular about their coffee, has a stash of Coffees of Hawaii that will keep the crew fueled up throughout the world’s most enduring and greatest ocean race.
So far, we haven’t heard a peep from Free Range Chicken. The luxurious Perry 59 that left Long Beach loaded down with plenty of honey baked ham and lots of beer and wine in their two freezers. They must be enjoying their spacious galley-salon, three-zone air conditioning system, two heads, two showers, mattresses and down pillows.