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Old Apr 20, 17, 2:14 pm   #1
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Food and wine matching in CW

Last year, wife and​ I flew AY to BKK in business and they had a supplement to the menu explaining which wine went with which course.

Not being a wine buff, my wife took the advice and quite enjoyed the choices which surprised me as she rarely drinks.

This summer we are off to LAX in our first ever CW and wondered if they did anything similar on BA? Personally, I'm happy with a few cans of tribute, not really a fan of wine having only ever tasted one that i liked but haven't got a clue what it was.
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Old Apr 20, 17, 2:28 pm   #2
  
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In F, yes, but in CW not really. The wines in Club I find are drinkable but not in any way memorable. I have had some great wines in F though - both on the ground and in the air.
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Old Apr 20, 17, 2:28 pm   #3
  
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Is this a wine up?
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Old Apr 20, 17, 3:01 pm   #4
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Originally Posted by badoc View Post
In F, yes, but in CW not really. The wines in Club I find are drinkable but not in any way memorable. I have had some great wines in F though - both on the ground and in the air.
we're in F on the way back, so that's good to know, thanks.

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Is this a wine up?
It might be for her! She's also an African flyer but not of the same vintage
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Old Apr 20, 17, 3:31 pm   #5
  
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I don't think BA usually recommends wine pairings (except they used to do so with the tasting menu in F, but that is now gone).

However in F you can ask for tasting of wines you would like to try and you should get an array of part-filled glasses.

In J I suggest going for whichever seems like it would suit you best, and change if you don't like it. I find the actual taste notes near the end of each wine's blurb in the wine list are usually accurate (after the stuff about how the winemaker is the 35th generation of his line, the rows of vines are aligned with Ley lines and have perfect Feng Shui, an array of deities have blessed the casks the wine is matured in, the cellars are in a diamond-studded Kimberlite pipe and whatever other irrelevant guff they think may make the wine sound good).

BA J wines are OK with the occasional star. The F wines are good.
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Old Apr 20, 17, 3:43 pm   #6
  
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Is this a wine up?
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Old Apr 20, 17, 3:58 pm   #7
  
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It says in the description of the wine something like "goes well with our fish, chicken, or vegetable main course options" but that will be a generic comment for some new world generic white wine.
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Old Apr 20, 17, 4:10 pm   #8
  
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Club World generally stocks two red, two white. The red's for instance will differ in body and be a broadly better fit for different items on the menu.

The wines aren't chosen for the huge array of meals served across many routes, but are generally pretty good.

As mentioned, there's usually a comment in the wine menu with a suggested food pairing.
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Old Apr 20, 17, 6:55 pm   #9
  
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The CW menu says that a wine might suit a certain dish so beef / fish /pasta etc

You then need to make the choice.

Just read the menu.

And the CC will let you have a taste before pouring a full glass
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Old Apr 20, 17, 11:34 pm   #10
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Thanks all for your help
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Old Apr 20, 17, 11:57 pm   #11
  
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I admit to being a bit of a food & wine pairing anorak, and while I may be suffering retrospective rose tinted glasses, ISTR at some point in the dim and distant past there was at least a little bit of effort to make a match in F, i.e., the onboard cellar was stocked slightly differently depending on the menu.

For example, if there was something spicy a riesling or other Alsatian style varietal might be on there.

Regrettably I agree with others that even if there was an attempt at one point, it no longer happens other than the "generic" white with fish, red with meat.

Two things for sure, there will always be a red Bordeaux and a white Burgundy. I also can't remember ever not seeing a sauv blanc, either Loire or new world. On the reds, pinot noir and syrah/shiraz are commonly available in F so that covers almost all bases there!

EK are quite smart in this respect, although there is no attempt to match menus with wine per se, but they offer half a dozen white and half a dozen red by combining the J wine with F onto the same menu for F pax. Sometimes there is overlap, but it's far from unusual for me to choose a wine from J if I perceive it to be a better food match.
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Old Apr 21, 17, 1:12 am   #12
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Most of the wine served in CW can be bought for under £20. The food probably costs even less. Combined with the effects of altitude on your tastebuds and sense of smell, I wouldn't expect too much from a wine and food pairing.
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Old Apr 21, 17, 1:21 am   #13
  
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Originally Posted by LondonElite View Post
Most of the wine served in CW can be bought for under £20. The food probably costs even less. Combined with the effects of altitude on your tastebuds and sense of smell, I wouldn't expect too much from a wine and food pairing.
20 quid is being generous. I agree on your other points.

CW is not going to be gastronomic extravaganza, more a calories and alcohol intake to get you through the flight.
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Old Apr 21, 17, 2:10 am   #14
  
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I'd be delighted if the budget was £20/bottle, you can get something very pleasant at that price if you look outside the overpriced French regions of Bordeaux/Burgundy.

I think most of BA's CW offering is in the £10-15 range which is probably the sweet spot in terms of value. Personally I find wine to be one of BA's strong points among the established airlines, I usually find the CW offering enjoyable enough for a glass or two without making me want to drink a bottle which seems like a fair state of affairs in business.

Looking at the competition I have regular experience of;

AA is often frankly plonk in the £5-7 range & I would rather avoid or have a beer.

QR used to offer some really special stuff in J but I've noticed a definite slide over the past 18months and, considering they probably buy 2-3 years in advance, I wouldn't be surprised if they're at the BA level in another year although they do offer a wider range with often a Gerwurztraminer or another niche choice.

JAL serve excellent champagne in J but the other wines are not much better than AA usually although there can be the occasional half decent bottle.

There is an interesting video available on YouTube with BA's wine buyer explaining how they choose stuff. ISTR he says that Pinot Noir is the optimum grape for your taste buds at altitude & your typical Bordeaux blend about the worst but they feel they have to offer a Bordeaux option as people expect it on BA! I certainly stick to his advice more often than not these days if drinking red although in general white seems to suit me better.

Incidentally, I also struggle to appreciate champagne on a plane despite really enjoying it on the ground. I don't know if the lower cabin pressure effects its effervescence but I probably only take a glass as it seems wrong to turn one down!
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Old Apr 21, 17, 2:14 am   #15
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Originally Posted by stevie View Post
20 quid is being generous.
I left a little wiggle room in case someone said "Where can you get a bottle of Chateau Peepee 2017 for under £23 in the UK, huh?"
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