IN A FIRST-OF-ITS-KIND PARTNERSHIP, Singapore Airlines and AeroFarms, the leader in indoor vertical farming, launched a Farm-to-Plane initiative to bring the world’s freshest inflight produce to Singapore flights from Newark International Airport and John F. Kennedy International Airport.
Using produce grown within a five-mile radius of EWR and picked frequently yearround, Antony McNeil, director of food and beverage, Singapore Airlines, incorporated the greens into three dishes: The Garden Green featuring asparagus, broccolini, avocado, hot smoked salmon and AeroFarms’ mixed salad greens with lemon vinaigrette; Heirloom Tomato Ceviche with cured ham, palm hearts, AeroFarms’ arugula and spiced tomato dressing; and the Soy Poached Chicken including pickled ginger vinaigrette, AeroFarms’ baby bok choi, zucchini ribbons and sweet potatoes.
In his role, McNeil oversees food and beverage; innovation; design development; and customer experience to ensure culinary excellence in flight and in lounge operations worldwide.
WHICH FOOD IS YOUR GUILTY PLEASURE? AND, ON THE OPPOSITE END OF THE SPECTRUM, WHAT IS ONE INGREDIENT OR FOOD YOU HATE TO USE?
A simple vanilla milkshake, which takes me back to family holidays in New Zealand, when I was young. I loved the simple pleasure of walking down the road to the corner store with a handful of coins from my grandfather to ask the storekeeper, with a cheeky grin, if I could get an extra scoop of ice cream and a few extra shots of vanilla syrup to bump up the flavor. I’ll never forget watching the milkshake cup being filled and then the whir of the Hamilton Beach milkshake blender. It’s hard to beat a vanilla shake!
I tend to shy away from adding matcha or green tea powder to desserts, pastries or beverages, as I find it’s often excessively applied. I much prefer the Japanese tea experience — it’s a more authentic way to enjoy the green tea tradition.
WHAT DISHES WOULD YOU SERVE AT A PRIVATE DINNER PARTY?
I have a couple of go-to dishes, often at the request of my guests. Coconut-braised beef short rib is a take on a Southern Thai dish, rich and luscious from the coconut cream, sweet and salty, slightly spicy, cooked 24 hours in a slow cooker. Paris mashed potatoes are the perfect accompaniment. With rich ingredients of potatoes, cream and butter, it is absolute decadence. A classic Caesar salad with a whole egg; roasted garlic; anchovy dressing; crisp Romaine; wafer-thin, maple-smoked, sugar-cured bacon, roasted until crisp; and Parmesan crostini with olive oil and herbs. Then, to finish, apple tarte tartin and homemade vanilla ice cream.
WHAT WAS THE FIRST MEAL YOU EVER PREPARED ON YOUR OWN?
It was a pan-grilled, toasted ham and cheese sandwich, buttered on the outside to give it a golden finish, with shaved ham off the bone and sharp, aged Cheddar melting through the ham. Tasty!
IF YOU COULD DESCRIBE YOUR PERSONAL STYLE IN ONE DISH, WHICH DISH WOULD IT BE AND WHY?
I would say dry-aged ribeye on the bone, slow-roasted over charcoal, accompanied by a crisp garden salad using the super-fresh AeroFarms salad greens we serve in flight. Also, I’d add oven-roasted fingerling potatoes and a classic Bearnaise sauce. In my years designing menus for SIA, I’m convinced the simple things are the best: uncomplicated, well-seasoned, cooked with love and a reflection of my culinary journey from humble beginnings to high-end dining to the world’s best airline. It’s a return to the classics. We work to bring this to in-flight menus: simple, quality ingredients; maximum flavor; expert preparation; beautiful presentation.
WHICH CULINARY TREND WOULD YOU LIKE TO DISAPPEAR?
The use of truffle oil. I would have also included kale; however, after discovering AeroFarms’ baby kale leaves, I’ve become such a convert that we use them in our in-flight meals — soft, sweet, crunchy, easy to eat, tasty!
Without a doubt, the pandemic changed the role of airports in the travel industry. Hamad International Airport’s role evolved in many ways since the pandemic hit. Now, more than ever, airports are responsible for creating a secure passenger experience. As the gateway to Qatar and the world, the safety and wellbeing of staff and passengers has always been at the core of Hamad International Airport’s strategy.
I imagine that when writer Hans Christian Andersen mused, “Life itself is the most wonderful fairy tale,” he was standing at the edge of Copenhagen’s historic Tivoli Gardens, one of his favorite haunts, enlivened by the swirl of human happiness that surrounded him: children laughing; carousels spinning; games of chance played for prizes; lovers holding hands; hungry people whispering over sweets, hot drinks, beer and towering, open-faced smørrebrød, Denmark’s quintessential sandwich. That fairy tale lives on today at the second-oldest amusement park in the world, a spectacle of folly architecture, bakeries, gardens, rides, restaurants, puppet shows and joy ... and which also happens to be one of the city’s most storied places to convene for business.
The restored Park Hyatt Toronto reopened its doors, bringing luxury, sophistication and glamour alongside a nod to the hotel’s Canadian heritage. Alessandro Munge of Studio Munge collaborated on the hotel’s refresh, drawing inspiration from Canada’s seasons and natural landscapes.
The Global Business Travel Association’s (GBTA) Convention 2021 will be unlike any other convention before it, as we come together in person for the first time since the business travel industry drastically changed and look forward to rebuilding and reshaping the future. GBTA Convention 2021 will bring all of us together to learn from experts and each other, in-person at Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida, Nov. 17–19. The safety of our attendees is our top priority. View health and safety protocols.
I recently dined at Irwin’s in Philadelphia. The restaurant is located on the rooftop of the Bok Building, a former school turned collective of small businesses, non-profits, artist workshops, a bar and restaurant. I previously visited Bok for the bar and yoga classes, and I was excited to experience the restaurant.
Cathay Pacific reaffirms its commitment to reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 with a pledge to use Sustainable Aviation Fuel for 10 percent of its total fuel consumption by 2030. The airline has made pioneering efforts in supporting SAF development for more than 10 years.
GBTA’s Convention 2021 will bring the business travel industry together for the first time in a long time. Once again, you’ll learn and connect with experts and each other, along with discussions with leading thinkers, entrepreneurs and change makers addressing the issues that matter most.
Arriving early afternoon in Puerto Rico, we jumped in an Uber and took a short, 15-minute drive from the airport to La Concha. As it was Tuesday, the streets were not too busy and the hotel lobby was calm. During the weekend, the scene likely would have been more bustling. We were greeted by a staff member who requested proof of vaccination and government-issued ID, and were given a wristband to indicate we were fully vaccinated. All guests are required to be vaccinated and wear masks at all times while moving around the hotel. Hand sanitizer stations were placed around the lobby, in elevators and in each common area.