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Austrian Airlines Brings Back its Flying Chefs with Upgraded Menu

Premium passengers flying long-haul with the carrier can now expect a quintessential Austrian dining experience

by Lauren Smith

June 16, 2023

Photo: Flying Chef. Courtesy of Austrian Airlines.

With its Flying Chefs back on board after a pandemic hiatus, Austrian Airlines is now upgrading its catering on long-haul flights with an expanded menu of main courses, a Viennese coffee service, and a cheese trolley coming to business class from this month.

The new long-haul catering concept, dubbed “Tastefully Austrian,” is one way Austrian Airlines offers travelers the “hospitality and the Austrian sense of home” it promised when launching its rebrand this spring. Now flying under the motto “Austria’s flair in the air,” the Lufthansa Group airline hopes to be “the perfect blend of tradition and modernity.”

Photo: Wienerschnitzel. Courtesy of Austrian Airlines.

In business class, that blend will take the form of an expanded dinner menu, featuring two international dishes and one Austrian signature dish, and a soup now accompanying the starter.

But the Gastfreundschaft, or hospitality, starts even earlier, when passengers take their seats and are greeted with a welcome drink, now served with a bar snack.

The main event comes after the meal when a coffee house service reminiscent of Vienna’s best Kaffeehäuser enters the premium cabin. While Austrian Airlines previously offered this service, it’s now been returned to its pre-pandemic grandeur, with an even wider selection of coffees prepared right in front of passengers.

And the show isn’t over there, as a separate cheese trolley with digestive options follows the coffee service.

Passengers in the premium economy and economy cabins will also see improved menus on long-haul flights, with new recipes added to Austrian Airlines’ “proven” three- and four-course menus.

Photo: Boeing 777-200ER. Courtesy of Austrian Airlines.

“We aim to provide our guests with a flying piece of Austria – a culinary experience the Austrian way,” said Austrian Airlines COO Michael Trestl. “Our goal is to highlight Austrian hospitality and cuisine and to offer our guests an individual experience.”

“We are proud to return to our former strength with our new long-haul concept and to bring Austrian culinary excellence to our passengers at the highest level.”

The launch of the new dining concept follows the return of Austrian Airlines’ Flying Chefs in April, who had been grounded as the pandemic impacted air travel. These fully trained and qualified chefs, emissaries of renowned Austrian catering company DO&CO, prepare and plate meals for passengers.

Additionally, Austrian Airlines launched a pre-order service for economy passengers on short and medium-haul flights earlier this year. This service allows passengers to pre-order in-flight treats such as Wiener schnitzel for a fee between a month and 48 hours before departure.