The menu for the luncheon service was as follows:
LONDON to SINGAPORE
Tartlet of Cornish Crab with Crème Fraiche
Barbeque Pork with Szechuan Vegetables
SALADS AND OTHER THINGS
Sweet Potato and Pumpkin Soup with Fried Eshalots
Salmon and Gravadlax with Pickled Cucumber, Mizuna and Mustard Dressing
Salad of Jamon Iberico, Marinated Artichokes, Piquillo Peppers with Balsamic Vinaigrette
Seared Halibut with Lemon and Olive Oil Dressing with Steamed Greens
Stir Fried Rice with Duck, Ginger and Asparagus
Big Bowl of French Onion Soup with Gruyere Croutons
Our signature Steak Sandwich with Tomato and Chilli Relish
Tomato, Feta, Grilled Zucchini and Capsicum Lasagne with Baby Spinach
Herb Crusted Halibut with Olive Potatoes, Snow Peas and Romesco Sauce
Spiced Goosnargh Chicken with Chestnuts, Leeks, Chilli and Stir Fried Wombok
Slow Cooked Angus Beef Sirloin with Potato and Cabbage Gratin, Grilled Mushrooms and Tarragon Butter
Red Wine Braised Venison with Roasted Chantennay Carrots and Pappardelle
Salad of Rocket, Radicchio, Mizuna and Baby Gem with your choice of dressing
Aged Balsamic and Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Fresh Lemon Juice and Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Palm Sugar Vinaigrette
Hand selected blue, soft and hard cheese served with accompaniments
Black Forrest Trifle
Caramelised Banana Millefeuille with Brown Bread Ice Cream
Whole or Sliced Fresh Seasonal Fruit
Laverstoke Park Buffalo Milk Organic Ice Cream Tubs
A selection of Paul Wayne Gregory Chocolates
Mini Citron Tarts
Woodlands Chloe Reserve Chardonnay 2009, Margaret River, Western Australia
The Margaret River’s Wilyabrup sub-region is famous for producing some of Australia’s finest Chardonnay. Chloe’s history lies in 35 year-old vines from Woodlands’ original vineyards; it’s excellent natural acidity comes from this shaded location, and its rich fruit weight from deep loam soils. The 2009 is a wine from a fantastic Margaret River vintage; its palate displays stone fruits, ginger, spice and tropical fruits over an almost mealy texture. The wine finishes with vibrant natural acidity.
Tyrells “Vat 1” Hunter Semillon 2005, Hunter Valley, New South Wales
2005 was an outstanding vintage. A blend of the ages is found in this astonishing drop created, in the main, from two vineyards – one planted in 1908, the other in the early 1960’s. Originally named Hunter Valley Riesling, the fruit for this trophy winner was picked at relatively low levels of sweetness. It offers up a striking, super-fine perfume and a gentle, minerally finish. Lemon and lime are the major players in this exquisite Semillon.
Leeuwin Estate “Art Series” Sauvignon Blanc 2010, Margaret River, Western Australia
Leeuwin Estate is family owned and operated, one of the founding wineries of the now famous Margaret River district, it consistently produces wines that rank with the world’s finest. The Art Series represents Leewuin’s most opulent wines, identified with paintings commissioned from leading contemporary Australian Artists. This wine has an intensity and depth of flavour that is so very Leewuin Estate, a bright and lively wine that dances across the palate. The bouquet shows lemon sherbet, lime, green pineapple and crisp golden delicious apples with great intensity of refreshing flavour.
Penfolds RWT Shiraz 2004, Barossa Valley, South Australia
Since its first release in 1997 the RWT has become something of a wine media darling, some commentators suggesting that it is an even better wine that the much-revered Grange. Both styles are outstanding examples of Australian Shiraz: Grange the more traditional blockbuster & RWT displaying more modernity & finesse.
The Wanderer Yarra Valley Pinot Noir 2010, Yarra Valley, Victoria
This is a relatively new label from winemaker Andrew Marks (who works with Timo Mayer at Andrew’s parents Gembrook Hill property). There are actually four different Pinot clones that go into producing this wine. The clones would produce distinctly different wines if they were made separately; from the distinctly savoury, through to the sweeter fruit forward. In combination they produce a lovely, balanced wine.
Woodlands ‘Nicholas’ Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2007, Margaret River, Western Australia
Rumours have been circulating that if one wanted to know what the Margaret River’s best Cabernet tastes like, Nicholas would be it – spot-on praise for this silky smooth drop. Left to its devices for 21 months in suave French oak, Nicholas has emerged as a world-class wine. The nose reveals cassis, mulberry, blackcurrant, violet and toasty French oak notes.
Mount Horrocks Cordon Cut Riesling 2010, Clare Valley, South Australia
An outstanding dessert wine. A thoroughly delectable experience that takes you on a journey through ripe lime essence of orange marmalade. Lively and full of flavour.
VITTORIA CINQUE STELLE COFFEE
Other blends available on request
VITTORIA CHOCCOCHINO HOT CHOCOLATE
Experience the beautiful fragrant loose leaf tea bags from around the world, supplied by T2.
English Breakfast – A blend of finest the Sri Lankan full bodied teas produce a rich and well rounded flavour.
Earl Grey – A full bodied Sri-Lankan blend of Ceylon orange pekoe and generous amounts of bergamot, producing an all-time classic tea
Peppermint – A well rounded peppermint flavour captures the sweet essence of all things ‘minty’ with a sweet, cool lingering aroma.
Chamomile – Relax and unwind with this fragrant infusion of sweet golden chamomile flowers.
Sencha – A classic green tea grown in Japan. These beautiful emerald green leaves produce a sweet, smooth grassy flavour.
Lemongrass and Ginger – Zesty and bright lemongrass contrasts the spicy flavour of ginger to create a wild taste sensation.
Other teas are available on request.
Noilly Prat French Dry Vermouth
Bacardi White Rum
Bundaberg Dark Rum
Bombay Sapphire London Dry Gin
Chivas Regal 18yo Scotch Whisky
The Glenlivet 18yo Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Wild Turkey Rare Breed 108° Bourbon
Wyborowa Polish Vodka
Little Creatures Pale Ale
James Squire Golden Age
Hahn Premium Light
Baileys Irish Cream
Your flight Attendant will advise whether today’s menu features Penfolds Grandfather Fine Old Liqueur Tawny or Grant Burge 20yo Tawny
Morris of Rutherglen Old Premium Liqueur Tokay
Morris of Rutherglen Old Premium Liqueur Muscat
Martell Cordon Bleu
Spicy Tomato Juice
Appletiser Sparkling Apple Juice
Bundaberg Ginger Beer
Sparkling Mineral Water
Still Mineral Water
The canapés were delivered to my seat consisting of two of the crab tarts and a Chinese soup spoon with the pork on it. The crab tarts were lovely indeed and the Comtes de nectar of the gods went down a treat. I test drove the seat for a while and realised it goes every which way except maybe upside down. Forward, backward, tilt up, tilt down, extend, retract you name it.
The crew dropped by to take my lunch order and caught me taking pictures and asked if I would like a photo of me. I said no thanks I break cameras when I am on the receiving end.
I was offered more of the canapés by the crew and grabbed another of the crab tarts. A bottle of water was delivered to the seat and placed in the receptacle designed specifically for that purpose.
The crewmember came back and set my table for lunch asking if I wanted butter or olive oil and balsamic vinegar with my bread. I went with the latter and small dish was placed on my table. The crewmember then returned with the bottles of olive oil and vinegar that were presented to me before being poured into the small dish.
Bread offerings were then presented consisting of a white sourdough or light rye bread. I am a sucker for sourdough so went with that. A friend at work always laughs about the fact that I travel half way across London to buy a sourdough loaf from a bakery near Borough Market. But it is the best sourdough I have ever tasted. Do yourself a favour if a Londoner and get down to De Gustibus at Borough Market and buy a loaf of their six day sourdough. It is to travel half way across London for.
Oh dear I digress; again, how did we get on to my penchant for sourdough? Right back on board in heaven I supped on my Bubbly until the soup was delivered to my seat. I was offered fresh ground black pepper and my wine glass was filled with the RWT Shiraz.
The soup was nice, but my Potato, Pumpkin and Leek soup is better.
Next up the salad of Iberico ham was placed at my table. My friend Jen will be delighted to see that artichokes made an appearance in this dish.
And onto the main. Well a little disappointing it was, not inedible but could have been a little less well done. The star on the plate was the potato and cabbage gratin that was superb. The red wine was very nice although I am not sure I would fork out 50 quid for it back in London. During the main the bumps began and the crew were asked to take their seats for a while. It didn’t last long, well long enough to have my smart QF PJs sporting a rather tacky red wine splash!
After the main I was asked if I would like some more wine and cheese and dessert. I said I would have another glass of red and then the Banana thingy. I also asked for a glass of the dessert wine.
Oh my golly gosh the banana thingy was bananary and lovely. The dessert wine wasn’t a Noble One or Mud Pie but still nice. It did have a strange pong on the nose though but tasted fine. I remember once when doing a wine course that NSW Hunter Valley Red can have a cow pat nose to them but still taste good. I suppose this is much the same although the pong wasn’t cowpat. And yes I know what a cowpat pong smells like after spending holidays on my Dad’s cousin’s dairy farm during my childhood. Cowpat fight anyone?
Oh boy the alcohol is really beginning to talk now. Yes I am writing this in my own little heaven after lunch and supping down yet another glass of the Comtes de nectar of the gods.
After lunch the table was cleared and I was offered something else to drink. I ordered a coffee that was delivered a while later along with a box of chocolates.
I enquired if there was anything left in the bubbly bottle and what do you know there was. But only half a glass. Oh dear now I felt guilty with the rest of the cabin having an afternoon nap and the crew opening another bottle of bubbly for me. Oh so what c’est la vie. Ah look another glass of Comtes de nectar of the gods has been poured for me. Well my lovely Sarah M signature quote takes on new meaning. If we burn in heaven like we do up in the air on QF then bring on heaven.
OK I am now up to date. Be back for breakfast; I suppose before touching down in Singapore.
Right feeling refreshed and hung over after a 4 hour cat nap. More water please if you will crewmember. I decided to fire up the IFE and do something other than listen to music. I thought I would see what all the fuss was about and watched The Artist. During the movie I ordered yet another bottle of water and towards the end the crew offered me a coffee or tea and said breakfast would be served in around 30 minutes. I asked for a cappuccino.
Around two hours out of Singapore the breakfast orders were taken.
Berry Energiser Drink
Fresh Fruit Salad
Brookfarm Toasted Muesli
Yoghurt and Honey
Strawberry Jam, Orange Marmalade, Honey, Vegemite
Free Range Scrambled Eggs on Toasted Pain au Lait with Grilled Bacon, Braised Beans and Roasted Tomato
Honeyed Buttermilk Pancakes with Toasted Walnuts, Strawberries and Mascarpone
Baked Egg with Pear Smoked Sea Trout, Crème Fraiche and Wilted Spinach
A while later hot towels were handed out and the crew asked if I would like my bedding cleared away. I suppose it is apropos to speak about the bed for a while before I move on to the breakfast feast. When the bed is made up by the crew they put down the seat to a very wide fully flat quite long bed. Then they put down a lambs wool under blanket topped with a fitted sheet. Then the duvet is placed on top and tucked in at the feet end. There is an almost full size pillow and a smaller pillow to support your head in the land of nod. With all that pampering it is almost impossible not to get a great sleep on QF.
Right now, breakfast. Lets start with a smoothie and another cappuccino. I decided to go with the bircher muesli which had a great zing to it courtesy of some citrus zest in the mix. I went with the scrambled eggs deal along with some toast and ridgy didge aka Vegemite.
The eggs were luscious and creamy and cooked perfectly. The beans had a really rich and tangy tomato sauce base and were about as far from Heinz baked beans as you can get.
The toast and vegemite were, well, toast and vegemite. Yum – breakfast of champions who like to clog their arteries with salt.
I was offered more juice, water and coffee during the meal but opted only for more water as dehydration was setting in.
As the crewmember was clearing the table she asked if I would like more toast and I said if I eat anymore you will have to roll me off.
The pre-dawn yellow glow was just appearing in the sky beside me and I was able to grab a couple of shots of some interesting clouds. One of the crew caught me at it and we chatted for a bit about photography and nature. Soon after this the CSM dropped by again and saw me with my camera and said isn’t it a glorious sunrise? She had just taken some shots from the flight deck.
The CSM announced 35 minutes to go and shortly after this the flight engineer announced the ready for descent. I changed back into my civvies and prepared myself for the landing. The crew dropped by with the last service item of the flight that being another hot towel. The main crewmember who had been looking after me dropped by to thank me for flying and we chatted a bit about London and QF.
The other crewmember dropped by and also thanked me for flying with QF.
We landed at 07:45 and taxied to our gate. I thanked the crew again on my way out of door 1L and made a beeline to the F lounge in order to grab a shower and some juice before doing it all again. See you on the flip side folks.