I'm going to make the second vote for Continental BusinessFirst on this thread, a flight last fall from EWR
. They asked us to review the menus before leaving the gate and give them our entree selection, so that they could be sure to have everyone's entree choice before leaving:
1. Hot towels
2. Drinks and warm cashews (went with champagne)
3. An extensive wine list, and they were able to wine-match every course. Wines are a hobby for me, and I actually learned about some new wines on that flight that I buy now for my cellar.
4. Appetizers: Air-dried beef and steamed lobster claws with smoked salmon (was supposed to be a choice of either, but they pretty much gave everyone both)
5. Pasta course: I forget the three pasta choices. Again, they gave everyone some of each. The pasta was a touch overcooked, but well beyond expectations for the capabilities of an airplane galley.
6. Entree: I had poached salmon on rice with vegetables. I forget the preparation, but it was curry-like and very good. The dish was very fresh and not excessively salted or seasoned. My partner had a veal chop with polenta that was immense and as good as any we've had on the ground. We're both 6-foot athletic guys with huge appetites (who hadn't even had lunch that day) and could not finish our entrees. Again the wines were fantastic. My partner and the FA
disagreed (jokingly) about which wine to match to his entree, so she said, authoritatively, "OK
, that's it, I'm pouring you both a wine-tasting." Next thing we knew, there were 5 glasses in front of each of us, with a tasting of each red that would even remotely go with his veal. I still thought he was right.
7. Cheese and port. I could only handle a nibble of cheese and a sip of port at this point. I was stuffed. Coming from an Italian-American family, I began to think my mother ran this airline (Eat, eat! You look too thin!)
8. Dessert. Edy's vanilla ice cream with sundae toppings to order. Of course, the FA
told us she made the BEST sundaes and to just let her make us one. We were so stuffed we shared one. She was right.
By this point, the entire BusinessFirst cabin had eaten and drunk itself halfway across the Atlantic. All we were capable of doing was reclining our seats and sleeping. I think they intentionally hand out the customer surveys once we're all snockered!