ABOARD THE CARNIVAL BREEZE - Are you a Blue Iguana or are you a RedFrog?
Seems like a strange question coming from Carnival Breeze Cruise Director Butch Begovich.
But Butch quickly explains the story behind the two critters who now make their home on Carnival Cruise Lines. “The most popular cruise activity is eating,” Butch says. “The second most popular cruise activity is drinking.”
And the Carnival Breeze has plenty of places to do both. “We have a lot of brand new fun spots,” Butch says. “You should try them out and see which ones you like the best.”
For starters, there is the RedFrog. The story goes that he used to live in the forest, soaking up the rain. Now he lives on Carnival, basking in the sun.
In fact, the little tree frog has made himself so at home on the cruise ship that he has his own private label draught beer, custom-brewed specially for Carnival – ThirstyFrog Red.
The first pub ever on a Carnival ship opened in May 2011 on the Magic with ThirstyFrog Red beer and the response was overwhelming. “They ran out of beer the first day,” says Vance Gulliksen, Carnival Cruise Lines spokesman. “This is a huge huge hit for us. ”
So popular has ThirstyFrog Red become that it is now served on the new Breeze and other Carnival ships. “Carnival is the only place you can get it,” Vance says. “It’s a fun thing to do but we didn’t realize how popular the pub and the beer would be.”
The RedFrog pub itself is an island-themed watering hole located on Deck 5 of the Breeze. The décor is decidedly Caribbean meets Key West with nautical styled interiors, warm woods, vibrant tile work, images of ships at seas, plus foosball and game tables, a jukebox and live music.
The indoor-outdoor pub serves Caribbean favorites – Bahamian conch salad, grouper fingers, firecracker Jamaican chicken wings, Jamaican jerk pulled pork sandwiches, beef sliders, coconut shrimp and more – all just $3.33 per dish.
RedFrog Pub also serves top Caribbean rums and regional beers such as Jamaican Red Stripe, plus tropics-infused cocktails with a focus on “Tings.” The drinks are made with Ting, Jamaica’s unofficial national lemon-lime soda.
At $5.50 for a 19-ounce glass, ThirstyFrog Red is an amber beer with a light taste. For its faithful fans, ThirstyFrog Red is also served in a 101-ounce tube for $27.95.
“It’s good beer,” says Tony Allaire, relaxing on the RedFrog patio. “If I could get it at home, I would probably buy it.”
Since the beer isn’t sold in their Lakeland, Florida, area, Kristi Bellendier says the couple will probably have to take more Carnival cruises. “This is our sixth Carnival cruise and we are already talking about our next one,” Kristi says. “This is our first time on the Breeze and I think it is the best of the fleet. It is awesome.”
Then there’s the Blue Iguana and, of course, he has a tale to tell. What makes him blue? Some think he was born that way. But legend has it that he spent too much time in the blue agave fields soaking up the spirit of tequila.
You also might be asking how an iguana finds a pair of purpose sunglasses … that fit. Let’s just say it boils down to one memorable trip to Cozumel, Mexico. The rest of the story, it is said, can be heard if you treat Blue to a tall tequila drink.
“I haven’t decided yet what I’ll have,” says Melissa Villaneuva of Orlando, perusing the menu at Blue Iguana Tequila Bar. “They’ve got so many choices that it’s hard to pick.”
According to bartender Boyan, margaritas are the most popular drink at the Blue Iguana. But then you have to decide which margarita – the classic, the guava, the spicy, the mango or the chipotle pineapple passion margarita.
The RedFrog has branched out and now has his own RedFrog Rum Bar on the pool deck.
Located across from each other, RedFrog Rum Bar and Blue Iguana Tequila Bar each feature a unique themed décor and specialty drink menus, as well as offering poolside entertainment.
To keep it fun, the Blue Iguana and the RedFrog have devout followers who engage in friendly competition. “We think it started when Blue stole Red’s drink and put it on his menu,” a bartender says. “We think that’s where the rivalry started.”
Cruisers are invited to create their very own cocktail spotlighting Red’s rum or Blue’s tequila. The winning cocktail becomes a featured beverage on the ship.
As RedFrog himself might say – “Chill out. Live life to the fullest.”
For more information: Contact Carnival at www.carnival.com