Changes to Qantas First menu and wine list

7 replies

ian62

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer P1

Member since 23 Aug 2014

Total posts 17

Flew QF First Syd to Lax and Sin to Mel last week. My areas of interest are airline food, wine and service. I thought readers interested in these areas may want to know the following:

1. The degustation menus have ceased (unless they exist on QF 1/2).
2. They have been replaced by shorter menus with less choice in a traditional starter (4 choices including the steak sandwich, which to my mind is not really a starter in a traditional 3-course menu, but more of an in-flight snack), main (3 choices) and dessert (2 real choices with the 'ice cream' and 'seasonal fruit' tacked on but not really a plated dessert, a bit like the gimmick of the steak sandwich) format.
3. The 'special' dish which is described by the crew was also downgraded on this flight - last year I was served a stunning, perfectly cooked main of Moreton bay bugs; this menu had a starter of burrata with veg (I also note that as part of cost cutting the excellent buffalo mozzarella in the First lounges, justifiably praised on these pages, has been replaced by the cheaper and pedestrian cows milk bocconcini).
4. The wine list continues to be excellent, faring particularly well at high altitude compared to some airlines that serve high-end branded wines in First that have little or no taste at high altitude in a pressurised cabin.
However, the old format of listing 3 'flagship' champagnes (La Grande Dame, Winston Churchill and Taittinger Comtes de Champagne (100% chardonnay) and then announcing which one was available on the flight (surprise surprise, the latter the most expensive, therefore on the menu the least) has ceased and only the actual champagne served is listed, which is less confusing as there have been reviews where passengers have assumed all 3 were available! On this flight it was the Taittinger!!
On the Sin-Mel flight I was served the Charles Heidsieck Blanc De Millenaires 2204, their flagship, another stunning 100% chardonnay beauty, great with food.
5. Service (which can be frustratingly hit and miss on QF) was stunning, precise and graceful, with the flight attendant in charge of food preparation taking particular care with heating, plating and requests.
6. I would like to see more money spent on deluxe ingredients in First (I flew JAL in F Lax-Nrt on the way back and the food and wine product defied description with BOTH Cristal and Grande Annee available). With the exception of the token teaspoonful of caviar in the canapés the overall feel is top notch Business for the food (excluding the breakfast menu which is excellent) rather than First.
There was a time when Qantas served a six-pack of Sydney rock oysters in Business Class from Sydney to Perth on a 767!
There is till, to my mind, poor product differentiation in the food menu when comparing Business to First.
7. Well done to Qantas with the wine list.

ian62

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer P1

Member since 23 Aug 2014

Total posts 17

Sorry that should read 2004 for the Heidsieck

djtech

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 02 Sep 2018

Total posts 344

In my opinion, Qantas does not remotely care enough about its first class passengers. It is an 'aspiration product' so to speak. Just another way to let you burn points for marginally better and targetting the ultra-wealthy. Honestly, this should be the Business product. Then, it will be world class instead of a subpar business and first.

rckjiang

Member since 16 Jun 2017

Total posts 35

Flew QF93 F on 3 days ago and had the tasting menu.

ian62

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer P1

Member since 23 Aug 2014

Total posts 17

I have kept the original F menu and wine list for both flights and am happy to share these if requested. If some flights have the tasting menu and others don't, that raises the issue of consistency.

sid

Member since 07 Jan 2011

Total posts 122

Hi Ian,


Thanks for the post, great feedback!

Please post the menus, would be interesting to see...

ian62

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer P1

Member since 23 Aug 2014

Total posts 17

Apologies.

I made an error in my comments 1. and 2. above - the degustation menu WAS served on the Lax flight but not on the Sin-Mel flight as this was deemed a "supper flight" (departure 1940!!) and my comments regarding the number of courses and quality of food apply to this flight.

The other comments apply, including 3.

The Mel flight was unusual in that a full breakfast was served (hardly any takers), presumably for the connecting passengers from the London flight.

It would make more sense to have a more generous dinner service with a continental breakfast before landing as SQ do on their evening flights to Sydney and Melbourne

Additionally, when I re-read the Lax flight menu, with the degustation, although the number of choices was greater, the overall content of ingredients is more on par with Qatar J (interestingly JAL served a huge dollop of caviar in J (!) on my Nrt-Sin flight).

More money on luxe ingredients and accessories for better F/J product differentiation is needed.

Examples:

1. A full caviar service (even the excellent Tasmanian salmon roe with creme fraiche and blinis could work)

2. A proper thick hot or cold towel (the current rags, often over- our under- hydrated are embarrassing) offered more than once in relation to boarding, meals and landing.

3. Crayfish, venison, White Rocks veal etc etc

Can't get the menu to attach so will email it to the administrator


rahul

Member since 24 Oct 2010

Total posts 9

Here's the menu (provided by ian62).

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