FLYING GETS FRESH: VIRGIN AMERICA INTRODUCES NEW SEASONAL SUMMER MENU
Award-Winning Airline Offers New First Class Menu with Help of Famed Pastry Chef David Lebovitz;
Unveils New Seasonal Main Cabin Menu
San Francisco – July 15, 2010 – Virgin America, the California-based airline known for its award-winning cuisine today announced the introduction of new menus that offer guests a selection of fresh and seasonal options for summer travel. The new summer menus include a wide range of meals and snacks available in the Main Cabin on-demand via the Red™ seatback entertainment platform. Virgin America is the only airline in the U.S. with a touch-screen seatback menu that allows guests to order what they want, when they want it during a flight. Since its launch in 2007, Virgin America has captured a list of travel industry awards including, “Best Domestic Airline for Food” in Travel + Leisure 2009 World’s Best Awards. The new First Class summer menus also include a little something special from famed pastry chef David Lebovitz, formerly of Chez Panisse Restaurant in Berkeley, California and author of Room for Dessert and The Great Book of Chocolate. Both menus are crafted using an assortment of nutritious and fresh ingredients, including local fruits and vegetables, premium meats and artisan breads.
“As the only airline based here in the Golden State, we take pride in doing things differently and in elevating the industry standard for guest service. Our new summer menus are no exception to this,” said Frances Fiorillo, Senior Vice President of People and In-Flight Services at Virgin America. “With the first touch-screen food ordering system and an ever-evolving in-flight menu that reflects our California roots, we’re proud to offer travelers an unexpected dining experience at 35,000 feet.”
Through October 1, 2010 guests in the First Class Cabin will enjoy this seasonal menu featuring a variety of gourmet dishes that offer something for every taste. Selections featured on the new First Class menu will vary by route, but include:
First Class Breakfast
- Fresh baked sweet cranberry walnut bread served with sweet creamy butter.
- Fresh summer fruit with candied kumquats, pomegranate and vanilla yogurt: Summer sliced mangos, pineapple, papaya, kiwi strawberries and seedless watermelon topped with sliced tangy candied kumquats. Garnished with vanilla yogurt, pomegranate seeds and fresh mint.
- Fresh summer fruit: Freshly diced pineapple, crisp apples, mango, papaya, kiwi, blueberries and strawberries, tossed with fresh squeezed orange juice, lemon zest and sugar, topped with fresh raspberries walnuts and lemon mascarpone. Garnished with a fresh mint sprig.
- Chorizo sausage, potato and egg omelet: Farm fresh egg omelet filled with chorizo sausage and potatoes topped with a spicy New Mexican chili sauce and served with Ecuadorian “Llapingachos” made with potato, annatto and mozzarella cheese, topped with a pickled onion tomato curtido, garnished with crumbled cotija cheese and fresh cilantro.
- Fresh herb omelet: Farm fresh egg omelet filled with goat cheese and ratatouille of zucchini, yellow squash, fresh herbs, garlic and vine ripened tomatoes served with a tangy tomato wine sauce. Served alongside a Mexican torta made with sliced artisan bread, spinach, fontina and ricotta cheese, roasted peppers, asparagus and roasted tomatoes. All garnished with a fresh sprig of basil.
- Creamy spinach and roasted corn omelet: Farm fresh egg omelet filled with skillet roasted sweet corn and spinach tossed with parmesan cheese, wine and cream; served with home-style grits slow cooked with pancetta, manchego cheese and fresh minced sage leaves. Served with crisp wild cherry wood smoked bacon and sautéed chicken sausages. Garnished with diced ripened plum tomato and garden snipped chives.
- Baked eggplant, zucchini and egg frittata: Farm fresh egg frittata layered with thinly sliced eggplant, zucchini, green onions, garlic and basil and topped with seasoned egg, mozzarella and pecorino cheeses, all baked until golden brown and served with sliced grilled eggplant garnish and a chunky fire roasted pepper sauce. Accompanied by a trio of home-fried baby potatoes with fresh thyme, sweet peppers and onion and fresh Italian parsley garnish.
First Class Lunch and Dinner
- Andalusian gazpacho with crostini: Traditional Andalusian chilled soup made with fresh tomatoes, European cucumbers, Sweet bell peppers garlic, olive oil and sherry garnished with brunoise of cucumbers, tomato, peppers and parsley and served with a crisp crostini and fresh basil.
- Baby beet salad with oranges and arugula: Salad of garden fresh Arugula and fresh baby red, yellow and candy stripe beets tossed in grain mustard dressing and garnished with moro and naval oranges segments, pickles sweet red onions, tear drop tomatoes, walnuts and fresh chives.
- Pork tenderloin with a guava smear, port wine figs & saffron spaetzle, horseradish oil: Tender pork tenderloin brushed with guava, lightly breaded and sautéed until golden browned, served with sautéed saffron spaetzle pasta and wilted spinach tossed with feta cheese, pine nuts and roasted tomatoes. Complemented with black mission Figs marinated in port wine, a light veal jus, tangy horseradish oil and herb roasted tomatoes.
- Roasted vegetable lasagna with garlic cheese toast: An upscale play on home-style lasagna, made with handmade tomato, spinach and egg pasta, layered with grilled eggplant, zucchini, yellow squash, fontina, mozzarella, parmesan and ricotta cheeses, roasted red and yellow peppers and fresh herbs all cooked till golden brown and served with a rich tomato wine sauce, buttery broccolini, grilled fennel, and a skillet roasted baby carrot, crisp roasted garlic bread with Swiss cheese served on the side.
- Grilled pork charmoula with crisp eggplant with ricotta, pomegranate molasses and papaya relish: Grilled pork tenderloin medallions marinated with lemon, olive oil, toasted cumin, fresh mint, cilantro leaves, garlic and smoked paprika, served with yukon gold whipped potatoes with parsley, a crispy eggplant and basil ricotta cheese fritter with, miniature vegetables of baby carrot, patty pan squash and zucchini, served with veal jus and papaya and pomegranate relish
- Roasted eggplant, tomato and artichoke tart with polenta and wild mushroom mac-n-cheese: A variation of a traditional mac-n-cheese. Cavatappi pasta baked together with roasted garlic, cream, sweet cream butter, parmesan, gruyere, and cheddar cheeses, topped with wild truffled mushrooms. Served alongside an eggplant tart made with flakey puff pastry, creamy herb polenta, roasted eggplant, artichokes, spinach and tomatoes, topped with parmesan and mozzarella and baked until golden brown. All accompanied with buttery broccolini, roasted tomato and garden snipped chives.
- Wellington of home-style meatloaf with prosciutto, wild mushrooms, panache of fresh vegetables and sauce cabernet: A play on an American favorite. Home style meatloaf wrapped in Prosciutto ham, wild mushrooms and sweet sherry onions all wrapped in puff pastry and baked until golden brown, served with garden fresh vegetable panache of carrots, haricot vert, fava beans and pearl onions. Finished with a light cabernet sauce and a fresh thyme sprig garnish.
- Vegetable eggplant moussaka: A variation of a classic vegetarian dish of roasted eggplant, olive oil, garlic, chickpeas, ripened tomatoes, cilantro, cauliflower, broccoli and spinach all stewed together with vegetable stock, cinnamon, allspice, lime and pomegranate molasses, served with lemon basmati rice with sweet dates, cilantro, black mustard seed, and preserved lemon all garnished with Moroccan olives, grilled green onions, cilantro and a lime wedge.
- Fresh Fruit & berries with passion fruit sabayon: Fresh summer mango, kiwi, raspberries, blackberries blueberries and strawberries all tossed together and topped with a rich passion fruit sabayon. Garnished with fresh mint.
- Butterscotch pudding with vanilla bourbon mascarpone (Recipe courtesy of pastry Chef David Lebovitz www.davidlebovitz.com): Homemade rich butterscotch pudding with a hint of whiskey, topped with a vanilla & bourbon mascarpone and chocolate shavings.
- Second service cheese plate: Selection of hand cut artisan cheeses of Brie, aged white cheddar, and smoked Gouda, garnished with baby frisée lettuce, quince, raspberries, blackberries and a delicate macaroon pastry.
- Redeye fruit and half sandwich: Selection of Hand cut artisan cheeses of Brie, aged white cheddar, and smoked Gouda, garnished with baby frisée lettuce, quince, raspberries, blackberries and a delicate macaroon pastry, served with a half sandwich.
In the Main Cabin and Main Cabin Select, guests can select their meal and snack options at the touch of a button using the Red™ system’s interactive seatback entertainment platform at any time during their flight. The on-demand ordering system is only offered by Virgin America and is part of the airline’s standard, award-winning service model.
Prices for the new Main Cabin summer menu options range from $7 - $10, and are complimentary in Main Cabin Select. These include:
- Granola with fresh fruit and yogurt: Build your own yogurt parfait with 18 Rabbits pecan, almond, maple granola, fresh pineapple, kiwi, oranges, red seedless grapes, and strawberry and fresh fruit yogurt. (A wheat and soy free breakfast)
- Vegetables and Cheese: Fresh veggies and artisan cheese; Brie, aged cheddar, and Swiss, complimented with green grapes, sliced zucchini, yellow squash, daikon radish, carrot sticks, red radish, celery sticks, broccoli florets, black olives, dried figs and grape tomatoes. Served with a fresh roasted tomato and fine herb hummus and a bag of crunchy multi grain crackers. (Gluten Free)
- Pastrami sandwich with swiss on russian rye: Fresh baked dark Russian rye bread Piled high with shaved peppery pastrami, Swiss cheese, crisp green leaf and baby frisée lettuce, vine ripened tomato, creamy whole grain mustard spread served with a Toblerone chocolate for dessert.
- Turkey, cranberry and brie: Fresh baked anadama bread piled high with thinly shaved turkey breast, crisp green leaf and baby frisée lettuce, vine ripened tomatoes, dried cranberries and a creamy brie cheese spread. And a Toblerone chocolate for dessert.
- Grilled veggie sandwich with goat cheese and basil: Thin multigrain pita bread layered with grilled zucchini, yellow squash, Japanese eggplant, roasted red bell pepper, roasted tomatoes, fresh basil, baby frisée and green leaf lettuce finished with goat cheese cream cheese spread and a side of basil pesto aioli. Served with a Toblerone candy for dessert.
Virgin America has also added a special selection of ‘Cocktails with Altitude’ as created and named by Virgin America Inflight team members.
Prices for the new cocktails range from $6 - $11 and are complimentary in Main Cabin Select and First Class. These include:
- Tequila Tea: Hornitos Reposado 100% Blue Agave Tequila + Honest tea
- Sweet Tree: VeeV Acai Spirit + Cranapple Juice
- Grandma’s Coffee: illy issimo Iced Cappuccino + Whiskey
- Rouge Sunset: Karma Sparkling Wine + Cranapple Juice
- Mile High-Tini: illy issimo Iced Cappuccino + Vodka
In addition to the fresh offerings onboard, Virgin America flights offer prepared meal boxes in three varieties: Comfort (including almond butter and crackers), Hearty (including salami, cheese and crackers) and Protein (including protein-packed tuna and hummus). Each meal box is available for $7. Virgin America also offers a wide selection of snacks on-demand like anti-oxidant packed sweetriot dark chocolate bars and Popchips (available for $3).
With outstanding service and beautifully designed new planes, Virgin America has captured a loyal guest following and experienced significant growth since its launch. Virgin America offers over 100 flights a day and flies to: San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, Washington D.C., Seattle, Las Vegas, San Diego, Boston, Fort Lauderdale, Toronto and starting in the fall of 2010 – Orlando. Virgin America has flown more than eight million guests since its inaugural flights in August 2007.
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Media Contact: Katie Baynes (650) 274-9242/ firstname.lastname@example.org
Editor’s Note: Virgin America is a U.S. controlled and operated airline. Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Group is a minority share investor in Virgin America.
About Virgin America: Headquartered in California and launched in 2007, Virgin America is one of the fastest growing start-up U.S. airlines of all time and currently employs over 1600 people. Virgin America offers guests attractive fares and a host of innovative features aimed at reinventing air travel. The airline’s base of operations is San Francisco International Airport’s ultra-modern International Terminal. The airline's new aircraft offer interactive in-flight entertainment systems and power outlets near every seat for electronic gear. Virgin America offers in-flight internet service on every flight and hosts the largest in-flight entertainment library in the North American skies via its touch-screen Red™ seatback platform. In addition to a 20-film library including Oscar winners, foreign language films and Hollywood blockbusters, Red features live TV, videogames, seat-to-seat chat, 3,000 MP3s, music videos, interactive Google maps and more. In just three years flying, Virgin America was named “Best Domestic Airline” in the Condé Nast Traveler 2008 and 2009 Readers’ Choice Awards and “Best Domestic Airline” in Travel + Leisure’s 2008, 2009 and 2010 World's Best Awards. For more: www.virginamerica.com