Breakfast is my least favorite airplane meal. Airlines seem to spend the least amount of effort to make anything remotely appetizing, at least as far as I’m concerned. Most, if not all of the meal consists of pre-packaged items that have been thrown together and weigh in heavily on refined carbohydrates and sugar. Hawaiian Airlines did not disappoint me. The breakfast served two hours before landing in Honolulu from Auckland was made up of pre-packaged croissant, pre-packaged blueberry muffin, pre-packaged butter spread, pre-packaged strawberry jam, pre-packaged apple slices, and pre-packaged yogurt, and served with pre-packaged plastic utensils. For someone who much prefers savory breakfasts, it was all I could do to eat breakfast. To make matters worse, the coffee was just north of lukewarm, meaning it wasn’t freshly brewed. After the surprisingly pleasant dinner that was served on the Honolulu-Auckland arrival leg over a week ago, all other meals have been Standard Airplane Food.
But, what about dinner right after takeoff from Auckland Airport tonight? Even though it essentially was the same dinner served only twelve nights before, it was just as agreeable, proving that the first dinner was not a fluke. Though tonight’s dried shiitake mushrooms weren’t sufficiently hydrated, they at least tasted like they were cooked in, can it be, dashi broth? I was probably dreaming. On top of it all, there was actually silverware with a nice large, turquoise-colored napkin, and pleasant complimentary wines from Redtree, your choice of a fruity cabernet sauvignon or crisp, dry chardonnay that was thankfully only slightly oaked.
To be fair, the breakfast was contracted out to a supplier in New Zealand since almost all the items had Kiwi provenances, but it was still under Hawaiian Air’s control. Methinks that the lion’s share of the measly budget set aside for food (sounds too frighteningly close to school lunch programs) goes toward dinner, and everything else, “Katy, bar the door!”