For someone who really adores travel I haven’t been to many far flung places. Growing up with parents who didn’t have the money for exotic trips and also a Dad who absolutely refused ( and still does ) to fly meant that all of my childhood holidays were UK based, I don’t regret this as I had amazing memories of those caravan trips. This did mean however that my first flight was at the age of 21 and was actually to Mexico – yes my first flight was a 9 hour one. I have never been one to start things the normal way. I remember feeling so nervous but also enjoying the whole experience, from check in to take off and the pleasures of a long haul flight. Since then I have visited Mexico once more but other than that my furthest destination has been The Gambia. For lots of reasons. the main one being that I became a parent, I have only travelled to countries within a few hours of the UK since that time. I am hoping that in the coming years that changes.
Last month I had an intriguing invite to attend an exclusive lunch hosted by Air New Zealand and Chef Peter Gordon in Soho. I knew that the food would be incredible and I was interested to find out more so of course I said yes.
Now perhaps like me you were fooled into thinking that Air New Zealand only flew to New Zealand? Well you would be wrong, here are just a few of the destinations you can get to with Air NZ:
Add to that they have a huge list of destinations you can fly onto with one of their partner networks.
I’ve never flown with a high quality long haul airline before so checking out the level of luxury on board an Air NZ flight was an interesting experience. I sat in the seats, checked out the onboard entertainment and even had a sneaky lie down. It was pretty much as comfy as any regular hotel bed..I was pretty tired but managed to drag myself out of the seats and down into the dining area where we were served the most incredible food by Chef Peter Gordon and team.
Peter Gordon has worked with Air New Zealand for 20 years now and it is a relationship which clearly works well. The food that you can expect on board an Air NZ flight is of the exquisite quality I imagine you would get at one of Peter’s restaurants. Care and consideration has gone into the menu which currently includes dishes such as:
Sumac Dusted Smoked Salmon ( which was so good I ordered Sumac on my return journey to try to recreate at home ):
Other foodie delights included Lamb with minted peas, braised lettuce and crushed new potatoes with THE most amazing mint jelly, Cod with slow cooked fennel and spinach confit and vegetarian paneer. Desserts were certainly not overlooked with Warm Treacle Tarts with clotted cream or an English Cheeseboard selection. Aside from main meals the refreshment menu includes amongst other treats, the famous Crosstown Doughnuts – if you are yet to try these there are several shops in London and you MUST go visit. The Apricot and lavender honey compote with lavender icing was just dreamy.
New Zealand is famous for its quality wines and wine pairing is something which Air NZ gave a lot of though to with a number of wine sections available on board.
I have to say I left the event feeling seriously satisfied with a full belly and impressed and desperately wanting to try a better way to fly.
* I was invited to this event and compensated for my time.