Emirates enhances First class menu, adds vegan options

The Gulf carrier’s refined inflight fare delivers new tastes for both carnivores and plant-based diners.

By Matt Lennon, August 11 2022
Emirates enhances First class menu, adds vegan options

Unlimited Persian caviar and vintage Dom Perignon champagne are the headline acts among Emirates revised First class dining experience, which is set to make its delicious debut on select routes later this month. 

Available to first class flyers winging from Dubai to Sydney, the new menu features pan-fried beef tenderloin with steamed snow peas, jus lié and new potatoes, along with Arabic spiced chicken with aromatic rice, tapioca dumplings and the ever-popular pan-seared salmon.

As part of Emirates’ Dine-on-demand service, travellers opting to partake in some fish roe will find it served with a mother-of-pearl spoon and alongside accompaniments including melba toast, egg, chives, white onions, sour cream and lemon.

Steak tartare with fresh vegetables.
Steak tartare with fresh vegetables.

In the other direction, the menu may feature Australian Angus beef and Yarra Valley cheeses, Italian olive oil and produce sourced from Japanese farms. 

When it’s time to kick back and enjoy a movie, Emirates’ new ‘Cinema in the Sky’ offering allows first guests to request a selection of gourmet and traditional movie snacks ranging from lobster rolls and sliders to the simple treat of a bowl of salted popcorn.

A selection of luxury snacks will help you settle in for your movie of choice.
A selection of luxury snacks will help you settle in for your movie of choice.

The new menus are part of a significant US$2 billion upgrade to the inflight experience, which will see much of the fleet retrofitted with the latest cabin interiors including newly upholstered seating, panelling, and flooring from November 2022. 

Emirates President, Sir Tim Clark, said the Gulf carrier was “flying against the grain” by investing in the passenger experience when others around it were cutting costs.

First class is not the only cabin enjoying a dining upgrade, with Emirates also introducing a vegan menu available for pre-ordering across business, premium economy and economy class to cater to growing numbers opting for the plant-based lifestyle.

The zucchini tart is among Emirates' new vegan-friendly options.
The zucchini tart is among Emirates' new vegan-friendly options.

As a pre-dinner tempter, flights departing from Dubai will offer guests a sample of fresh greens harvested from Emirates’ own vertical farm, Bustanica.

Selections to follow include pan-roasted king oyster mushrooms, jackfruit biryani, sliced kohlrabi with burnt orange, zucchini tart and vegan mapo tofu. After-dinner treat selections will include chocolate truffle cake with roasted hazelnuts, pistachio and gold leaf, or green grape tart dressed with candied rose petals, custard and berry compote.

Passengers wishing to pre-order an Emirates vegan meal can do so by looking out for a vegan icon on the menu to indicate the item is indeed plant-based.


Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

14 Sep 2012

Total posts 385

Ok some hit and misses, it's a galley in a plane after all. But I think where EK hits the high notes in First is because of the whole F&B package, the extensive meal options, the top shelf wines & liquor, the anytime dining, the table settings, the service & delivery all bound together (a bit of marketing spin or true to form) makes the experience feel 6 Star up there with a Four Seasons or a Park Hyatt. On most flights, most of the time, for most passengers EK F is well above what other carriers offer. 

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

31 May 2019

Total posts 8

I completely agree. Emirates really do treat you well in F. The F&B range and quality is really exceptional. Individual dishes on other F products can compare but overall they beat anything else I've tried (admittedly only QF, QR).

Emirates are the leader, the rest follow years later

Qantas Gold

07 Jun 2016

Total posts 9

Agree for first and business, wonderful experiences, but having just done economy with them - would never ever do it again. Truly average cabin staff (four legs in four weeks, perhaps one good one of the lot), food was revolting, bathrooms dirty quickly and seemingly not serviced regularly, entertainment selection pretty woeful (3 year old movies under 'new releases' and most of them unheard of). The seats were fine, A380 comfortable as far as any economy seat is. Perhaps the staff issues were impacted by Covid, but that was the killer part.

24 Jun 2020

Total posts 44

Totally agree and with Qantas chasing its own tail by introducing a First Class product in 2022/23 that other carriers have had for a decade or more.....


Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

06 Jun 2018

Total posts 3

EK F a regular option, agree with comments above… will be nice to ensure you always get the 32” tv every time.

How does EK F compare to Singapore Air’s first suites ? Considering switching from EK for my EU bound flights. 


15 Sep 2016

Total posts 4

Sadly can't comment on Emirates First Class, sounds good, but taking this opportunity to say that Emirates really needs to pick up its game on the Perth-Dubai-Perth run, both in the age of the planes in use for this run (with their antiquated and impossibly slow media set-up), and the very ordinary meals on offer in BC.  They used to be so much better, and they need to get back to that very quickly because other airlines are shaping up to be a better option for Perth travellers to the UAE or Europe.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

23 Sep 2013

Total posts 10

I’ve flown eight EK F sectors this year and not been impressed - caviar was Chinese ! Give me satays served by a SIN girl any day

25 Jun 2018

Total posts 41

I don’t like caviar (fish eggs) however it is presented, and the vegan selection mentioned doesn’t entice me either, so the extra cost of F would be wasted.  B is fine by me.

QF popped my Wife & I into F 3 years ago on a flight starting around lunchtime.  After 7/8 weeks travelling around Europe, the steak sandwich and an Aussie beer instantly brought me home again.

And don’t get me started on the Malaysian satay sticks - the best airline snack ever.


12 Apr 2013

Total posts 1501

It is great to have menu designed for vegans (i.e. peoples with mental disorder), but how about peoples who really sick like peoples who are diabetic??? Even people with strong allergy to nuts cannot be safe because in their menu stated that "We cannot guarantee our meals are nut-free"

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