Virgin Atlantic – Hong Kong to Sydney

April 19, 2010

It’s been a month since I arrived in Sydney with Virgin Atlantic. Since I’m stuck here for a while longer I can catch up on a few posts and in the process totally ruin the chronology of Food Dorks. Oh well.

Virgin Atlantic redeemed themselves on the second leg of my journey after serving me gluten in my gluten-free meal on the first flight.


My second dinner in 15 hours was steamed chicken with brown rice, roasted tomatoes and green peppers. It was OK but again the peppers were too bitter.

Call me boring but I’m a fan of boiled chicken and rice sometimes. It’s a nice cleansing meal and I think that’s better than rich food when you’re in a pressurised aircraft. If you think it’s too healthy then two gin and tonics makes it a more “balanced” meal, as demonstrated here.

Dinner came with a side salad, fruit salad, and a disc of very sweet bread. Does anyone know what it is? My fruit salad was one piece of dragonfruit, pineapple and watermelon. This was a pretty nice and healthy meal and I was happy with it.

Dinner also came with the bonus of an empty row in the middle of the plane all to myself. After the meal (and two double-gins) I lay down across three seats, put Florence + The Machine on and managed to get about 5 hours of sleep. Win!


Indiscernable sweet bread made a comeback for my second breakfast, which I described in my notes as “a sweet ham, tomato and cheese thing”. Upon reflection I can’t understand why I ate this thing. Must have been famished. Or greedy. My notes say “tasty, not bad, edible.” Was I being generous as well as greedy? Or was I delirious from lack of oxygen and an interrupted body clock? It looks repulsive. Tin foil surprise.

So, after 25 hours of travelling and four Virgin Atlantic gluten-free meals how would I rate their food service? On a Poor/Fair/Good/Excellent scale I would, at first, consider a Fair rating. I don’t think I could stretch to Good on this one. The dinners were passable but breakfasts were a sorry sight and they served me gluten in my first breakfast which actually means they failed to provide me with a safely gluten-free meal. On account of that I think the rating has to be Poor.  Virgin Atlantic has a lot of room for improvement with their special meals service.

My return flight is booked with Singapore Airlines and I have been looking forward to comparing them with Virgin Atlantic. Who knows how long it will be before I can get on that plane?  I’ll let you know when the wind changes.

Related posts: Virgin Atlantic: Gluten Free Failure and Still stuck in Sydney


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