If you can catch Jason, you'll usually find him in our favorite spot on the QV, the Commodore's Club, a lounge with a commanding view over the bow and its own cocktail menu boasting some "molecular" concoctions. So you say you like cosmopolitans? Jason would suggest their most popular drink in that casethe Molecular Cosmopolitanexpertly topped off with a swirl of vodka-infused gelatin mousse. "It's a new experience in the classic drinking passengers have always done," Jason explains.
And there will be theme nights. While you're slipping on a white dinner jacket or a slinky black dress and appreciating Cunard's "formality of service," you can thank Jason for orchestrating an evening of James Bond-themed cocktails, or (if you're up in the Hemisphere nightclub) a late night of Abba-themed specials. The idea is that the fantasy of the sea voyage is there, the opportunity to be someone else and order a vodka martini, shaken not stirred, is perfectly fine and welleven encouraged.
Jason's shipboard fantasy? It's actually quite attainable; Jason is working his way towards becoming Provisions Manager, which would mean being the man responsible for stocking the ship to cater to 3,000 people each voyage. Enough strawberries to make fruit medleys every morning and strawberries & cream each night? It would just take a snap of his finger. Crates of live lobster? Just sign on the dotted line, Jason.
A favorite drink of his: the 'Molecular Cosmopolitan'
What he loves most about the at-sea lifestyle: The advantage is quite simple, says Jason. "I could be doing the same job back at home on land, but not have the opportunity to visit these places."
Favorite port: James really can't narrow it down too much further than the Mediterranean, with particular love going to Livorno (Florence), Barcelona and Monte-Carlo. C'mon...who wouldn't love a few visits to Monaco every year?
Favorite on-land activities: Maybe there's something about being on a ship for days at a time that turns its crew into active lifestyle nuts? James is a cyclist, a runner and a gourmand who more than knows his Black Bellinis from his classic Bellinis.
Disclosure: We traveled to Norway onboard the Queen Victoria as a guest of Cunard, but all images and opinions are entirely our own (or those of the interviewees).
[Photos: Cynthia Drescher for Jaunted]