Flying First Class with Emirates Airlines

"Yeah, I wish!" 
Sweet treats for all passengers of Emirates (served in Economy Class)
Truth is, my journey with the largest carrier in the Middle East, went only as far as Jakarta's International Airport Soekarno Hatta, to be exact: Aero Catering Services (ACS). Next time, I will share with you a real First Class meal experience on board of those Boeing 777s serving between Dubai and Jakarta (I hope you are reading this dear Monsieur Brevot) =P

The advent of Low Cost Carrier in the past decade has its boon and bane. On the bright side, more people can afford to travel by plane, but on the down side, the public have grown alienated with the concept of a proper, satiating and palateable on-board meal. To the majority people, on board meal is at most, mediocre, or something merely to keep oneself occupied throughout the boring flight.

Emirates Airlines is obviously serious about its food. It is committed to serve 100% Halal certified meal consistently on all flights & routes to various destinations all over the globe. After all, all carriers will transport the customers to the same destinations and serve about the same routes. So, to distinguish itself from another, it is imperative for these airlines to create a lasting & impressionable customer experience, entertainment and cuisine.

Albeit 30 minutes delay, the event began with a presentation by the key Managers of Emirates Airlines for the region and Indonesia, who briefed us about Emirates Airlines' latest campaign "Hello Tomorrow" and about the catering & on-board meal aspects. The distinguished speakers that day were:
  • Mr Mohammed Al Nahari, Emirates Airline Indonesia Country Manager (3rd from Left)
  • Mr Bernard F. Brevot, Emirates Airline Food Product Manager for Asia and Australasia (2nd from Left)
  • Mdm. Ilonka Leiwakabessy, Emirates Airline Indonesia Sales Manager (2nd from Right)

Here are some interesting and useful facts, just for your information:
All food served on board of Emirates are Halal certified.
Complimentary alcoholic beverages are served for all passengers in all classes (except for Saudi-bound flights).
v You can order a cake (on advanced notice) to celebrate your special occasion 30,000 feet above ground, free of charge. (now, isn't it lovely?)
Air crews will serve families travelling with young children first. It's a way to encouraging families to travel (with Emirates).
Passengers can choose from up to 23 special meals ranging from Diabetic Meal, Gluten-Intolerant Meal, Kosher Meal, Post-Weaning Meal, Bland Meal, and other interesting special meals.
Menu rotation occurs every 4 months, so what's being served in January, will appear again in May and September. The entire menu itself is changed annually.
v In its 20th year, in Indonesia, Emirates will begin operating its third daily flight between Jakarta and Dubai on 2nd March 2013.

Here are some F&B items distributed on board. Don't these make you just want to stay adrift longer? =P


Next, we toured the ACS kitchen for almost an hour. The entire area was big (but not as massive as Marina Bay Sands' Heart-of-House) and maze-like; the kitchens and storage rooms were separated into different sections. Unfortunately, for hygiene and safety purposes, we weren't allowed to snap photos during the kitchen tour. I have always been fascinated with airline meals and thus, the chance take a peek into "behind the scenes" was a very much welcome experience for me.
Full Starters Set

Lunch time! The time was actually past lunch time, so I was glad to finally get to settle at our tables to sample  First Class meal on board of Emirates Airlines, sans the low air pressure, dry air and occasional turbulence of course (although I wouldn't mind at all flying 14 hours for that..). I was quite nervous to be assigned a seat at the same table as Monsieur Brevot.

But my worry was unfounded, such a cheeky gentleman Mr. Brevot is! His formal suit and composed poise disguised a warm and amicable persona. Throughout the meal, we chatted, and played some games hosted by the cheeky emcee (she's a lovely petite lady).

This is what dinner on board of Emirates Airlines look like:
Complimentary Bread Basket (choice of garlic bread or plain buns)
Appetiser
       Choice of either Chicken Salad or Smoked Salmon and Prawn.

Soup
       Carrot & Coriander Cream Soup

Seasonal Salad

Main Course
There were 3 options available: Chicken Breast Mousakhan, Beef Empal Balado or Dory Fillet with Tomato Basil Sauce. I chose the last and was actually rather regretted my decision when I saw what the others on my table had, which looked more tempting. Mr. Brevot's choice was Beef Empal, but I personally would love to have the Chicken Breast Mousakhan. A classic Middle Eastern recipe for the chicken, served with sauteed broccoli and tomato basmati rice garnished with fine pine seeds.

Dessert
       There were fruit tartlets, Rich Chocolate Cake, Tiramisu, fresh cut fruits and chocolate thins.

Cheese Platter
A selection of quarters of Blue cheese, Camembert, Mozzarella, Fetah, Fruit (peach) Cheese. My favourite? Camembert and fruit cheese, for the soft texture and rich flavours.

Thank you Emirates airlines for organizing this and thanks to Stratcom for inviting me =) This post has been way too long overdue =( My apologies, I've been postponing to write this story, because I want to really have the time to sit and write it down nicely. Time and sleep has been such a luxury for me as of late =(

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