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Midwest DFW-MKE-EWR Boeing 717-200 September 2005

Fri Sep 23, 2005 1:19 pm

Hi all,


For those at HKADB, here is another report to bring you pictures from another US domestic airline – Midwest Airlines (formerly known as Midwest Express). It is truly one of my favorite US airlines and they are always known as a high class and luxurious airline, and unfortunately, due to the competitions, the service has largely been cutback – the days with complimentary hot meals such as lobster ravioli and steak dinner with free wines and champagne are long gone. Not to forget a nice cold meal even on an hour flight from MKE to YYZ – I can’t forget that nice croissant sandwich plate with fruit plate and chocolate cake dessert – also a glass of champagne. Of course, those are long gone but it is still pretty good compared to other US airlines. Most routes still retain the 2X2 leather seats (also known as the signature service), and only a few leisure routes such as PHX-MKE or LAS-MKE feature the new saver service with the traditional 2X3 seating but still retain the 33” legroom. Of course, this report will be on the signature service – you will notice the large coat closets and complimentary freshly baked cookies are still offered. Food is still good despite they have to be paid separately ($5 for a cold meal and $7-10 for a lunch or dinner entrée). I think the F/As are still the best and offer the best service out there. The BOB offered is definitely one of the best that I have tasted so far, and I hope Best Care Cuisine can continue.

For other folks, here is just a report on Midwest’s signature service. I have to fly back from DFW to NYC, and since AA is calling for $599 oneway, and YX offers a $169 oneway. Despite a stop at MKE, it is still a good deal and YX is still my favorite US airline and the Best care cuisine is definitely a highlight. Well the cabin is served by 2 F/As now, and please note that the Best Care Cuisine is not offered on Kansas City (MCI) and some West Coast flights. Hopefully it will soon be changed.

September 13, 2005
YX 301 DFW-MKE Lv0715 Arr0924 Boeing 717-200 N909ME
Check in was done by a very pleasant and professional staff. BTW, YX uses Terminal B, and situates next to US Airways. My request for emergency exit row is honored and the agent is very graceful and cheery despite being so early in the morning. There is no wait at the TSA line, and I was at YX gate within five minutes. I settled down and took a few photos, and read a bit. The Boeing 717 was already parked here overnight and there were a few HP 757 moving around, as well as US EMB-170.

Boarding began at 6:53am, and our load was relatively light this morning – good for passengers, as I have no neighbor, but bad for the airline. I took my seat at 14A – recline-able exit row seat, and boarding was completed at 7:10am. Door was closed at 7:13am and we pushed back three minutes later. Traffic was light this morning, as we taxied off to Runway 18L. I saw an AS MD-80 taking off – I believe it was the first AS morning flight from DFW to SEA. We took off at 7:22am. Flying time was an hour and fifty-three minutes with a cruising attitude of 35,000feet. Boeing 717 took off very nicely and we were climbing steeply soon. Beautiful sunrise!

There is already a menu card in the seat pocket, as well as inside of Midwest magazines. It features the September and October menus (good that YX changes BOB menus every two months). Here is a menu transcript for breakfast (it is announced by the F/A as well).

Signature Service
Andouille Sausage and Feta Cheese Strata with red pepper puree and chive cream
Served with home fries and fruit garnish
Served hot

Continental Breakfast
Blueberry lemon poppy seed muffin with fresh fruit. Served with minted yogurt cream, salami, and Swiss Cheese

Well the service sequence is pretty standard for Boeing 717. Service started from back to front, and the first round was beverage and BOB cart, and then cookie service (only for lunch and dinner flights – not for breakfast), and then second beverage service. I tried the warmed breakfast, and it was okay – nothing too spectacular and is a bit heavy for me. The warmed entrée is covered on a warmed plastic film. I really miss the old Midwest Express china… but I guess those days are long gone. Well I have some juice and then tea and water. For the rest of the flight, I tried to take a nap. Descent began at 8:50am, and then we landed on R/W19R at 9:15am. We were parked at gate D44 a few minutes later. Yes, there is no entertainment on Boeing 717, but Dig E Players (handheld entertainment units) were available for rental on long haul flights over three hours – movies, television shows, and music.

YX 274 MKE-EWR Lv1010 Arr1308 Boeing 717-200 N905ME
Well the connection time was rather brief and Milwaukee, a hub for Midwest, was very quiet in the morning with only a few flights. My connection gate, D42, was right next door, and I decided to take a look at the magazine shop, and soon I was back at the gate. I noticed that the F/As on DFW flights walked over to our gate, and they were surprisingly working our flight to EWR. Boarding began at 9:54am, and the load was really light again. Once again I had no neighbor. The load was even lighter than previous flight – about 40% full. Door was closed at 10:07am and we pushed back a minute later. No traffic this early in the afternoon, and we took off from R/W19R at 10:16am. Flying time was an hour and thirty-eight minutes, and we climbed up to 37,000feet this afternoon.

Once again, the lunch service began at 10:28am and there were complimentary Rold Gold pretzels for those skipping the BOB. For morning, they had the Nature Valley chewy trail mix bar – almost forgot. I went with the warmed lunch as I did not like salad generally. The Chicken Quesadilla was wrapped in aluminum foil and was very nice – the almonds really add some crunch to it. The grilled tomato and basil bisque was a nice surprise – warmed soup on economy cabin. Even though I had to pay, but it is nice to have a bowl of soup for lunch. There was a fruit cup on the side as well. Following lunch, it came the warmed chocolate chip cookie – symbol of Midwest Service. Then there was another round of beverage. Below was the full lunch and dinner menu for SIGNATURE service September and October 2005. I included the dinner, so you know what is serving these days.

Asian Grilled BBQ Chicken Breast
With steamed vegetables on romaine lettuce with a cucumber sesame dressing. Side of fried wontons and fruit garnish. $10

Chicken Quesadilla Served hot
With toasted almonds and Chihuahua Cheese.
Side of poblano aioli
Paired with grilled tomato and basil bisque garnished with pan-roasted zucchini and Swiss cheese $10

Tapas Lunch
Smoked ham and black bean mushi rolls wrapped in a sun-dried tomato flour tortilla with chipotle orange cream cheese, peppers and onions. Served with chips and salsa. $5

Asian Grilled BBQ Chicken Breast
With steamed vegetables on romaine lettuce with a cucumber sesame dressing. Side of fried wontons and fruit garnish. $10

Grilled Shrimp Served hot
Rubbed in Cajun spices with penne pasta, Tasso ham, roasted peppers, and grilled onion simmered in a brandied cream and red pepper coulis. Served with mesclun salad with raspberry vinaigrette, roll and butter. $10

Tapas Lunch
Smoked ham and black bean mushi rolls wrapped in a sun-dried tomato flour tortilla with chipotle orange cream cheese, peppers and onions. Served with chips and salsa. $5

Descent soon began at 11:30am CST, and then we landed on R/W22L at 12:54pm EST. A quick plane-spotting note – Alitalia’s Boeing 777-200ER EI-DDH and BA’s 777-200ER G-RAES… We parked at gate 47 five minutes later.

I hope you enjoy the report, and included in the photo album was my quick Independence Air’s flight from JFK to SFO via IAD – I did not really feel like writing any more report, but just want to show up a few pictures of this airline. Who knows if it will still exist next year?

Enjoy and feel free to ask questions!

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Joined: Sat Oct 23, 2004 6:05 am

RE: Midwest DFW-MKE-EWR Boeing 717-200 September 2005

Fri Sep 23, 2005 4:31 pm

Its really a shame that YX has not been able to make their business model work up to this point. Sounds like you had some great flights.

When you think about it, the cost of these BOB meals is not bad at all when compared to the cost of a comperable meal somewhere in the airport.
"If the facts do not conform to the theory, they will have to be disposed of"
Posts: 104
Joined: Fri Mar 18, 2005 11:08 pm

RE: Midwest DFW-MKE-EWR Boeing 717-200 September 2005

Fri Sep 23, 2005 11:34 pm

It's always nice to hear other people compliment this airline. I flew them r/t back in March from EWR-MKE and loved them! I paid the same fare as I would have on CO Express, and got those great cookies which I would not have received on COEX. I did pay 10 bucks for the food, but it was so delicious. I hope they survive, as I will definitely fly them again in the future.

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