Of all of the world’s military dining facilities, the six year, five-star accredited Naval Station Norfolk (NAVSTA Norfolk) Galley is ranked supreme. From serving Distinguished Visitors to normal daily operations, NAVSTA’s services come second to none. Because of NAVSTA’s exasperated aim to provide the absolute best customer service to its’ patrons, NAVSTA has undergone various renovations and upgrades from completely closing the facility in 2005 and refurbishing the entire layout to installing a brand new credit card processing system in 2013 to increase efficiency in receiving payments, thus boosting the morale of the crew. Upon asking customers what they thought of the changes, they replied that they loved the changes because the Galley is more “restaurant style” and doesn’t have the ‘I’m on base’ feeling. “The improvements will remain as we see a need for continuing to boost the morale of the Sailors and make the dining experience here for them more and more enjoyable,” said David Luca, Food Service Officer.
NAVSTA Galley not only provides stellar service to customers and guests, but also houses several culinary based competitions offered to the other Galleys in the region to boost the morale of the Culinary Specialist (CS) rate. Leading Chief Petty Officer, Chief Culinary Specialist Melissa Mohammed explains, “We host ‘Chopped’ competitions where each two-person team gets a secret ingredient that is revealed just before the competition begins, they have to prepare an entrée and then the winner is decided based on points tallied throughout the competition and critique of the finished course. NAVSTA is even home to cake decorating competitions and other different “cook offs” where the Sailors of the CS rating can express their creativity and the winner is awarded special incentives to really push themselves to create something great.”
“Being the dining facility on the world’s largest installation, we have to stay on top of our game,” said Culinary Specialist First Class Temeka Rudd. “We have to make sure both our crew and our customers are happy because at the end of the day, we’re not only co-workers and shipmates, we’re family.” So always growing and improving, Naval Station Norfolk Galley is certainly leading the pack with proficiency and customer service. The eating experience is definitely one that is memorable and commendable.