ONBOARD CATERING SERVICE
So what do you recon? A 5 star luxury dining experience vs fast in and out buffet style catering or is it instead pizzas and sodas. Well in all honestly it's all of the above!
Sometimes it's Afternoon Tea with Scones, the other time Indian Cuisine, next time Arabic Hot Mezze and occasionally it is Asian Singapore Noodles mixed with Nobu Sushi😃. For that I would say as many creative minds there are - as many different types of cuisines one needs to cater.
"As many creative minds there are - as many different types of cuisines one needs to cater."
There really are no limits!
If you are flying a single owner and their family/friends then RELAX, DON'T PANIC!🤓
You have the chance to get to know the customer very well, their likes and dislikes and usually it is a bit easier as one already knows a little bit about the preferences. If on the other hand you are flying for a charter based operation for multiple customers it is different every time with various diets and allergen restrictions.
The two biggest determiners of catering is (in my opinion!) FLYING TIME and PASSENGER REQUESTS. There usually are no hot foods on flights under an hour and a half. But it all comes down to the requests and the amount of passengers travelling. On high load passenger flights with short flying time there are usually platters/appetizers for quick service and food plating.
There are also customers who show up with their own food (sometimes it is a lot too!!). In that case you need to make space to your already super full chiller (which there is NO space, so you need to become a magician and shake the magic wand to store it SOMEWHERE) ━☆ﾟ.*･｡ﾟ
Some order only pizzas. But most of the customers expect a 4 to 5 course Michelin Star dining experience with their complete right of course! And you have to deliver! Every single time. But of course to your very best limits.
The standard catering order usually starts with appetizers/platters followed by salads which continues with a Main dish and finishes with a dessert. If it is a long flight it includes snacks, whole fuits and a second service.
The food is of course pre-made but needs to be reheated with the correct temperature and time. Which gets tricky! Often I have different protein dishes and am in a rush to cater the passengers. There is no time to set the correct temperature for each protein. So I need to put it all in and hope that the set average temperature works for all of them. Which works most of the time mas o menos 😃.
I know I am making it sound super hard but it actually is not that hard once one gets used to it. Of course sometimes there are very busy flights when I run around like a headless chicken but then again most of them go smooth and fantasticly. :)