What a week! A pleasant stay in the Korean capital, but it was time to go back home. Skyteam is my choice, after trying the A380 for the first time onboard Korean Air, I decided to take a return flight with Air France. 12 hours are properly taken care of with French Savoir-Faire.
Air France has a Korean hostess onboard welcoming you in their local traditional uniform before the French crew takes over to show you to your seat.
Today we're flying 777-200ER, the old cabin setup of Air France's planes. 2/3/2 is the business class seat setup, small screens and a seat that doesn't recline completely. I wished it would have been the 777-300ER which is servicing Beirut or New York.
After they finished boarding the French crew distributed French magazines and the Korean hostess approached the locals with Korean magazines. Juices and champagne while we prepare to depart.
Before lunch service, the Chief of Cabin visited us, making sure we're safe and sound. She even asked me if I was from Beirut because she read I'm continuing down to the Middle East. It's the attention to details which makes all the difference.
Some notes before we start:
- The meal platters are designed by Jean-Marie Massaud. The menu is printed on several pages and is classy and introduces the food and the business class. The spirits are chosen by Paolo Basso, 2013's best sommelier, and Bettane Desseauve, the reference guide of French wines.
- Wine and water are served in fine glass cups.
- Slippers are distributed, as well as a refreshing kit of which the toothbrush is the most important.
Lunch started with an aperitif, "Mon Village" mini-twist nature butter biscuits and with that I chose to have the white wine from Vallee de la Loire Blanc. Sancerre Grande cuvee La Chaudouillonne 2013, Domaine Fournier Pére et Fils. Crunchy salty biscuits intensely buttery making you want to lick your lips and with that a fruity smooth wine. A beautiful first impression.
Amuse bouche, a spoon with a shrimp lying on wasabi cream. I loved that!
Another wine while appetizers are served. Bourgogne Blanc, Chablis Domaine Sainte Claire 2013. An aromatic and light bodied wine with floral notes. With that a gourmet Swiss air-dried beef with parmesan cheese, smoked salmon and salmon tartare. Two slices of dried beef with shaved Parmesan on the side and a chunk of smoked salmon with a portion of tartare. The smoked salmon is so good! Not oily, but juicy and very flavorful. Fine dining tartare, the fish and marinade are exquisite. It really is French dining in the air.
The main course followed. Pan served beef tournedos with blue cheese, potato cake bacon and parsley, carrots and spinach. Filet of Pacific sole with tomato basil compote, grilled polenta, snow peas, cherry tomatoes. Third choice would be pappardelle pasta, arancini with mozzarella cheese, kalamata olives. A fourth choice is the Plat du Jour which is a local Korean specialty; Korean dates, carrots, chestnuts and steamed rice. The Korean dish is served with wasabi cream and chopsticks. They also had miso soup on the menu; outstanding. I never imagined how good a soup is in the air. I rarely order soups and I honestly think that today is a start of a new era.
Tasty tender meat served with crunchy carrots and soft spinach waiting to be flavored with the sauce served in an aluminum container. The potato cake though was dry and hard to eat.
Let's move to red wine. Vallee Du Rhone Rouge. Chafeauneuf du Pape Les Eyglieres 2014 Ogier. One better than the other, the wines served on this flight are memorable. This red is also light on the palate, full bodied and rich.
Yummy, yummy! I enjoyed lunch so much. Different choices of wine, a tender red hearted meat, cheese, tarragon, mustard all before reaching dessert.
Forth wine: Bordeaux Rouge. Medoc Chateau Preuillac 2010. Best for last! Full bodied, rich tannins, woody and reflecting the Bordeaux terroirs. Four wines, four experiences, four journeys.
Lemon sorbet, mango macaron, crunchy chocolate tart with caramel sauce and tiramisu. The desserts are acceptable.
Now was sleep time! Unfortunately today we had the 777-200, the crew tells me it was replacing the 300 newer version for some technical reason. The seats aren't too relaxing for a long night's sleep. Two hours were enough, I watched a movie, edited some of my episodes while waiting for the meal service. Meanwhile, I had a double espresso and the savory ham and cheese quiche.
For dinner we were served a plate of marinated shrimp and scallops with guacamole. Penne pasta with ratatouille and Parmesan cheese followed by pannacotta with raspberry coulis.
Eleven hours and forty minutes passed smoothly. See you on my next trip. "Discovering the world and traveling are my two favorite hobbies."