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Dining Gluten-Free

The crew on Virgin Voyages are more than welcome to accommodate gluten-free dietary requirements, most restaurants include gluten-free items.

A table setting with food from Extra Virgin
A table with appetizers, food, and drinks at Extra Virgin. © Photo by Virgin Voyages

Introduction to Gluten-Free

The best way to ensure your meals are gluten-free (gf) is to make them yourself. This limits your options when it comes to dining out, travel, visiting friends – all the best parts of exploring and playing with friends and family. This guide seeks to ease your worries about traveling with Virgin Voyages, and point you to some delectable treats onboard her lady ships.

This guide has been written by Lisa Jensen and kindly provided to VV Insider for inclusion on our guides. More info on the author can be found below.

Virgin Voyages’ Approach to Gluten-Free Dining

Virgin Voyages does not have a gluten-free kitchen on board, the menus include the message: “Virgin Voyages’ kitchens are not allergen free environments. Please inform our crew if you have a food allergy or any other special dietary need.” The restaurant and kitchen crew do their best to ensure your meal is gf. To date, I have not become ill as a result of dining on board and I get sick within 24 hours of being dosed. That said, there is always a risk. Work with the crew, let them know whether it’s a choice or celiacs.


Razzle Dazzle, the vegetarian-forward (and omnivore-friendly) restaurant interior.© Photo by Virgin Voyages®

Communication is Key

When you visit a restaurant, the wait staff will ask if anyone at the table has any food restrictions. In recent voyages it seems a note is made on your file and any place you visit (with a reservation) knows of your dietary needs. But, make sure to always let crew know you’re gluten-free. Everything on the menu that is gluten-free from the get-go is clearly identified. That doesn’t mean the kitchen can’t make some dishes gf for you with a little tweaking. Best of all, Virgin Voyages crew in every capacity seem tickled by making magic happen. If there’s a dish which can be altered they will do it.

Tips for Specific Restaurants

The Wake

Let your wait staff know you’re gluten-free and ask what can be made gf, even if not labeled. The only things which I wasn’t able to try were the clam chowder, pork belly (cooked with gluten containing foods), salt crusted Dorade, and most desserts. The benedict was marvelous, I ask my toast to be nearly burnt to a crisp, sometimes it comes that way and sometimes they don’t believe I actually want rock hard toast. But, it’s all great regardless. The petit and grande plateaus are definitely worth the experience. I like to get them with a table of at least 4, there is a lot of food and it is absolutely best shared with delightful dinner companions.

A table setting at the wake restaurant with oysters in the centre
Grand Plateau, Seafood & Oysters, Treat Yourself Item, at The Wake Restaurant© Photo by Virgin Voyages

The Test Kitchen

There is a six course tasting menu with the main ingredient identified on the menu card – generally that item is prepared in several ways. Each portion is relatively small so you won’t have to worry about not being able to get through six courses. The gf options mirror closely the regular menu. At the time of this writing there are two menus, Menu A is served at the beginning of your voyage then switches to Menu B about half-way through, typically on Wednesday. On longer voyages the menus switch back every three days or so. The Test Kitchen generates a lot of excitement from diners, folks either love it or hate it. If you’re up for experimentation and perfectly ok with the Chef deciding your menu, go for it. If not, try it and hit up the Pizza Place later.

A number of people eating dinner in a restaurant designed to look like a science lab, diners are gathered around a long table with waiters in lab coats attending to them
People dining at Test Kitchen, the experimental eatery.© Photo by Virgin Voyages®

Extra Virgin

Not the first place you’d consider as a gluten-free diner; Extra Virgin has a gluten-free pasta, not the best around as it breaks into bits, think of it as spaghetti bits. I remain hopeful Extra Virgin restaurant managers can convince Virgin Voyages home office to stock one of the many wonderful gf pastas so there’s less noodle-breakage happening. The sauces are amazing. Ask for half dishes of everything with a gf sauce and share with your dinner mates. Ask for the gf crispy artichoke, yes, it’s for you. Also for you, affetti misti. The mousse without bread can be gf, and the wagyu carpaccio is wonderful. Under Secundi, pretty much everything can be made as a gf dish if it isn’t that way by design. Be sure to have an Affogato after dinner, the perfect blend of excellent gelato and espresso.

Pink Agave

An upscale Mexican restaurant where you can eat pretty much everything, the menu is nearly all gluten-free. The Bistec can easily be made gf and is absolutely amazing. Dessert is limited to Tamal De Chocolate – they can be divine, I’m a textural eater and a huge fan of the crunch so this wasn’t my ideal dessert. Pink Agave is a fantastic gluten-free restaurant, enjoy yourself with abandon.

An oval plate with grilled lobster and a smaller pink bowl with a lobster salad inside.
Grilled Lobster at Pink Agave© Photo by Virgin Voyages®

Razzle Dazzle

In addition to the items identified as gluten-free, you can also have Avo Toast (ask for the toast extra crispy as the bread they use can be a little doughy inside – unless that’s exactly how you like it). I’m a big fan of crunch. The Watermelon and Sesame Cream is really wonderful, and a lot of food. Again, ask, many dishes not identified as gf can be made that way for you. I’ve had nearly everything there and it is all fabulous. They have gluten-free bread for sandwiches but not French Toast or Waffles. Finally, don’t forget to read the information about Razzle Dazzle and why the stripes are everywhere. A lovely nod to the men and women serving Great Britain in WW II.


Pretty much everything on the menu either is, or can be made, gluten-free. Some of the meats are treated with gluten containing ingredients. Because you’re gf they will cook all the gf options first, sharing with your tablemates where possible. Did I mention you’re seated as a table of six? if you’re dining with less than six you’ll be added to a table with more folks, it’s great fun and you get the opportunity to meet some of your fellow sailors. There’s a fun (and quite loud) drinking game before your meal. If you do not drink ask to have a non-alcoholic option provided, we did this when traveling with family and had a fantastic time.

Food on the in-table grill at Gunbae Korean BBQ.© Photo by Virgin Voyages®

Sip Lounge – Afternoon Tea & Caviar

Caviar over a soft boiled egg, is a wonderful treat. And, Afternoon Tea at Sip Lounge is a must. Prior to sailing on Resilient Lady I would go to Sip Lounge in the morning, let staff know I would be there in the afternoon, roughly what time, and that I would need a gluten-free tea. I did this as my first voyage on Scarlet Lady they had to run around the ship gathering gf goodies when I arrived. By letting the staff know they had the opportunity to ensure there were gluten-free options available so my tea tower looked very much like everyone else’s and it didn’t take them half an hour to create a tower.

Glasses of champagne, tea and a tower of food
Afternoon Tea© Photo by VV Insider

When I did the Transatlantic on Valiant Lady the Chef outdid themselves with a fabulous tea tower and I was spoiled. Later the same year I sailed on Resilient Lady and did not have the same experience. I received a small plate with a couple of items and was informed they don’t do gluten-free tea. I was pretty upset, I was there with family and friends and didn’t want them to see Virgin Voyages treating a sailor carelessly. For the first time in any of my sailings, I complained. One of the wait staff came over to let me know they completely understood, that they’d been with me on the Transatlantic and remembered how wonderfully Valiant Lady’s Sip manager accommodated gf sailors. They apologized profusely and handled my request. Go ahead of time, give them a head’s up, and have a lovely tower filled with wonderful treats.


Virgin Voyages takes an accommodating approach to gluten-free dining aboard their cruises, although they don’t have dedicated gluten-free kitchens. The menus carry a disclaimer about allergens, urging guests to inform the crew of any dietary needs. Despite the inherent risk, the restaurant and kitchen staff strive to provide gluten-free meals. Communication is key, work with the wait staff asking about food restrictions and notes being made for future reservations. The six main restaurants, are attentive to gluten-free requirements, and the crew is willing to adapt dishes to accommodate guests with gluten sensitivities or celiac disease.
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About the author

Lisa Jensen learned two decades ago she had celiacs, the first couple of years were rough as she came to grips with the realities of being gf all the time. At the time her dietary issues were compounded by the lack of information, unclear packaging, and misunderstandings about what gf meant. How many times have you had someone say to you, well, there’s a teaspoon of flour but that shouldn’t matter overall, it’s so minute. Or, when you saw the crepe maker use the same ladle in the regular batter as well as the gf batter. Since then restauranteurs are better educated and accommodating. Lisa has sailed with Virgin Voyages since 2021, is fully addicted to the sailor life, and relies on Virgin Voyages fantastic crew to keep her dining options safe.

About the author

Co-Founder and Editor. An iOS developer and writer with a passion for theme parks and extensive cruise experience, blending technical know how with a love for Virgin Voyages nearing 15 sailings around the world.

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  1. Neil says:

    Is it possible to bring your own gluten-free products? For example, to provide your own gluten-free noodles to be prepared at the Noodle Around in de Galley?

    And regarding vegetarian options; is it possible to have an Impossible Burger prepared at the Wake, when others wan’t to enjoy a steak at the Wake?

    1. VV Insider says:

      Hi Neil, I don’t think they’d let you do this due to cross contamination but I’d imagine you could make something yourself, there is hot water readily available.

      They do have impossible burgers but only at razzle and they don’t share a kitchen with The Wake. Could be best to reach out to sailor services regarding any needs.

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