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Hit-Or-Miss News

Tray Tables One Of Dirtiest Parts Of Airplanes, Say Researchers

There probably isn’t a surface area on your flight that would meet your personal standard of cleanliness, but Canadian researchers have found tray tables to be among the dirtiest areas on an airplane.

It can’t be easy deep-cleaning an airplane, as you have people coming in and out, multiples times a day, but you would think there’d be some extra care put into the area where food is placed.

The CBC’s “Marketplace” TV show put out a study where researchers went on 18 flights on three different airlines and started collecting samples throughout the planes.

 

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In those samples, they found several types of bacteria, from yeast to E. coli.

You will be happy to know that those tray tables weren’t the absolute dirtiest spots, as those distinctions belong to the headrests, followed by seat belts. Tray tables were in the top five, though.

Obviously attendants do their best to clean out the planes, but the study also concluded that attendants are just in too much of a hurry to really get into the nooks and crannies.

If you want to feel a little better about your flight, you can remind yourself that this was done in Canada, and give any other country’s flights the benefit of the doubt.

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The 12 Funniest Stand-Up Bits About Food

The only activity that comes close to the satisfaction of cooking and eating is simply talking about food. Honestly, just discussing food—or hearing someone else do it—hits the spot in a strange, beautifully rewarding way. It doesn’t even have to be during an in-person conversation. We’re ready to adore poems about food, read essays about food, flip through magazines about food, but, most of all, hear comedians joke about food.

It’s true. In fact, it doesn’t even have to be a flattering observation about food. It can be a savage takedown of certain kinds of diners, restaurant chains, or culinary trends. While there’s a lot we love about food, there is totally a lot to laugh at—eating poorly when we know it’s bad for us, eating differently around our crushes, or even just trying to cook a simple meal and it going terribly wrong.

So let’s serve up some of our absolute favorite stand-up bits about food, covering everything from fast food shame to the weird way we go about grocery shopping. Seriously, what better way is there to burn off calories from cooking and eating all that food?

“Hot Pockets” – Jim Gaffigan

“I was looking at a box of Hot Pockets. They have a warning printed on the side. It says, ‘WARNING: You just bought Hot Pockets. Hope you’re drunk or heading home to a trailer, you hillbilly. Enjoy the next NASCAR event.”

“Cooking” – Maria Bamford

“People always say how easy it is to cook, but it is not any easier than not cooking.”

“Blue Food” – George Carlin

“Where the hell is the blue food? Every other color is represented.”

“KFC” – Patton Oswalt

“Can you take all those food items and pile them in a single bowl for me and I’ll just eat them like a Death Row prisoner on suicide watch?”

“Eating Around Men” – Iliza Shlesinger

“When you first meet a guy that you like, you can’t eat the way you want to on a date. You can’t. You can’t have that fourth plate of ribs on a date… I found out.”

“Pickle Juice” – Hannibal Buress

“I don’t like throwing out the pickle juice. It just feels wasteful. So lately I’ve been dipping my fingers in the pickle juice and then I flick it on my sandwiches for flavor.”

“Cheddar Bay Biscuits” – Kyle Kinane

“It should come as no surprise when I tell you that I belong to the Facebook fan page for Red Lobster Cheddar Bay Biscuits… for obvious reasons.”

“Fig Newtons” – Brian Regan

“I looked at the serving size — two cookies. Who the hell eats two cookies? I eat Fig Newtons by the sleeve.”

“Burger King” – Dane Cook

“First job I had? Burger King. My brother got me the job, too. My brother got me the job. He was the manager and he got me the job. You would think that would be cool, because he was my bro. But he was a dick. He thought he was the Burger King!”

“Airline Food” – Ellen Degeneres

“[Flight attendants] have this attitude, and they can afford to have the attitude, because they have the power. They have the peanuts. They have these six peanuts that we need.”

“McDonald’s” – Jim Gaffigan

“It’s fun telling people you go to McDonald’s. They always give you that look like, ‘Oh, I didn’t know I was better than you.'”

“Supermarket Experience” – Jerry Seinfeld

“Food is so complicated as an adult. You see people in the supermarket, just sweating it out. Nobody knows, ‘What do I eat?’ The protein, the carbs, the fat content; oh my god, fat content. Just walking up to each other, ‘What are you eating? Maybe I’ll eat that.’ The whole supermarket itself is designed to break down your sense of having any life outside the supermarket. It’s like a casino.”

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Features

Here’s Why Diet Coke Takes The Longest To Pour On An Airplane

If your buns have ever touched the seat of an airplane, chances are you’ve received a beverage from the drink cart that makes its way down the aisle, making sure your thirst is quenched during your flight.

While you make your choice between the usual water, soda, tomato juice, or ginger ale, it seems that Diet Coke, specifically, takes the longest to pour and get to your impatient hands.

An attendant from the These Gold Wings flight blog, said that the carbonation, combined with altitude makes Diet Coke a bit of a hassle to pour, as the bubbles take forever to go down and get a proper pour on the first try.

The blogger stated that she has to get started on other passengers’ drinks as she waits for the bubbles to go down on the Diet Coke.

There was a study conducted by the Illinois State University that concluded Diet Coke was more fizzy than regular Coke, according to Reference.com.

Just out of curiosity, we did a pour test on both sodas in the Foodbeast office. While we were able to fill up a glass with Coke on one try, for the Diet Coke, we had to wait on the bubbles to go down a bit before being able to completely pour the whole can, with a difference of around three to four seconds having to pass before we could resume pouring the Diet Coke into the glass again.

The blogging flight attendant did provide a video for a method she uses to try and cut the time, but it seems a bit unsanitary as it requires the surface of the can touching the poured drink.

At least now you know, if you’re on a plane and ask for a Diet Coke, you’re probably going to be the last one in your row to get your drink.

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Hit-Or-Miss Science

The Real Reason We Can Never Really Enjoy Airline Food

No one’s ever super stoked about airline food, as a plate of gelatinous chicken, and soggy veggies don’t usually cause much excitement, but even the best airline food is destined for failure, and there’s not much we can do about it.

Some of the major components that affect our taste buds, are humidity, air pressure, sense of smell, and sense of hearing. When you’re up in the air traveling, all of those factors are affected and ruin our ability to adequately taste food, according to SciShow.

Airline cabins are dry and humid, and have very low pressure, causing something called Xerostomia, AKA cottonmouth. The drying out process going on in your mouth decreases the sensitivity in your your taste buds by 30 percent so whatever you’re consuming during then, is with compromised taste buds.

It also doesn’t help that the environment in an airplane is noisy, and no one enjoys their meals in a noisy room, as is evident when trying to enjoy the pizza at Chuck E. Cheese’s.

All this means that when it comes to in-flight food, we’re playing from behind as soon as we hit the air. Our taste buds just won’t let us enjoy the food. Plus, Gordon Ramsay said he’ll never, ever eat airline food, so that alone should be enough reason to distrust it.

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Airline Serves Man With Celiac Disease Gluten-Free ‘Meal’ Made Of A Single Banana

Imagine that you have Celiac disease and eating gluten is literally toxic to you. Now imagine you’re on a nine-hour flight. You request a gluten-free breakfast, and get treated to a “meal” consisting of a single banana with a fork, a knife, and a packet of salt.

Kinda insulting, right?

Unfortunately, that’s what happened to All Nippon Airways passenger Martin Pavelka, who was on the second leg of a roughly $1300 flight to Australia when he was offered the sad excuse of a meal. Pavelka, who has Celiac disease, told The Standard that he had gotten a decent dinner on the flight the night before, but the banana breakfast didn’t fill him up for very long.

When he complained about the “meal” to flight attendants, Pavelka said that passengers around him were disrespectfully laughing at him as they enjoyed their full breakfasts of eggs, sausages, bread, mushrooms, and yogurt. What a bunch of jerks.

At least the flight attendants felt bad about it, as they did apologize to him as he was given All Nippon’s gluten-free offering.

The airline itself has since apologized and issued a statement to Telegraph Travel that they would be reviewing their “policy on gluten free options and how they are served” as a result of Pavelka’s experience.

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Celebrity Grub

Gordon Ramsay Reveals The One Thing He’ll Never Eat

Between all his television shows, we’ve seen Gordon Ramsay eat some pretty terrible food over the years, but there’s one thing he swears he will never eat, and it’s airline food.

The fiery chef said he worked for an airline for 10 years, saw how the food was handled, and learned to never put it anywhere near his Scottish lips, according to an interview with Refinery 29.

When it comes to eating on an airplane, Ramsay said, “There’s no fucking way I eat on planes.”

Instead, when flying out of London’s Heathrow airport, he eats at his own restaurant, ironically called “Plane Food” in terminal five. If not there, his pre-flight meals consist of Italian meats, sliced apples or pears, and red wine.

It would have been nice if he had elaborated on the airline food, because he made it sound like it’s a pretty sketchy situation.

According to the Science Channel show How It’s Made, the food on planes isn’t as bad as people make it out to be, but Ramsay seems to be a straight shooter, and isn’t afraid to tell it how it is.

I’d like to think airline food isn’t as bad as foul-mouthed chef makes it out to be, but now it’s going to cross my mind on every flight. Thanks a lot, Gordon.

photos via Instagram

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These Airlines Have The Most Decadent First Class Meals Around

Traveling can be a burden, but airlines have been making it more and more convenient as the years pass. Some companies in particular go to crazy lengths to serve their customers, with full-service bars, celebrity-chef curated food options, and even in-flight chefs to cook you your food. This all sounds pretty great, but what’s wild is that we weren’t even talking about first class yet. However, we have to because there’s amazing food to be had. Here are some of the airlines with totally bonkers first class meals you have to see to believe.

1. Emirates

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Emirates Airlines is known for their complimentary champagne almost as soon as you walk on board, but they also have some incredible food offerings. The real question is, where do we start? Let’s go with logistics. Two things you’ll find in every Emirates first class section is a) a fully stocked mini bar at your seat, and b) a full-service bar in the cabin. For breakfast, they serve items like French toast with poached peaches and vanilla mascarpone, in addition to a bevy of boozy cocktail options like their staple martini of gin over ice with marmalade, orange, and Cointreau, or their espresso martini made with coffee tequila, Amaretto foam, and a shot of espresso. For lunch and dinner, there is the option for a seven-course tasting menu that is served on fine china, to boot. Highlights from this menu include stir-fried lobster in black bean sauce, and a rotating, region-specific wine and champagne list that is unique to each starting city location.

2. Etihad Airways

Etihad Airways, which is one of the largest airline carriers serving the United Arab Emirates, boasts an in-flight chef program. This means the airline has recruited over 100 trained chefs who are aboard each flight to cook food for you right before your eyes. Etihad is especially known for their legendary breakfast. If you’re an egg fan, you’re in luck because you can get eggs made any way you like, from soft-boiled, to poached, or just plain old fried. You can also order a full English breakfast, fit with the customary baked beans, mushrooms, sausage, and tomato, or you can upgrade for king oyster mushrooms and hash browns. Might just take Etihad for the in-flight breakfast, tbh.

3. Singapore Airlines

Singapore Airlines has been legendary in the first-class food department for quite some time. At one point, they recruited famed chef Gordon Ramsay to curate their menu. Now they have a service called “Book the Cook,” where you can choose your meal in advance, so it’s ready and waiting for you whenever you get hungry. When it comes to the actual food options, they are totally drool-worthy. If you’re feeling like a baller, you can go for the pecan-crusted veal served with candied sweet potatoes and red onion marmalade that’s paired with Dom Perignon. If you’re feeling something ethnic, there’s always the baked Chilean sea bass in XO sauce, beef rendang, or prawn and chicken laksa. On top of it all, Singapore Airlines caters to literally any special diet that exists, including Kosher Vegetarian, Ovo-Lacto Diet, Ulcer Diet, and Non-Strict Nut Free. We’re not even sure what half of those are. Btw, we forgot to mention they also serve Wagyu beef. This is literally insane.

4. JetBlue Mint

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We just want to preface this entry by saying we didn’t know JetBlue Mint was even a thing, but their food selections are so ridic we can solemnly say our lives are changed for the better. The menu stays true to its American roots by featuring cuisine from famous New York City eateries like Brooklyn Roasting Company, Saxon + Parole, and Blue Marble Ice Cream. The airline also hired a staff wine specialist, who ensures all wine selections are native to the Napa Valley, which has been known to produce some of the best wine on the market. Highlights from the food menu include red wine poached pear with vanilla yogurt and toasted granola, feta frittata, and polenta with tomato caper sauce and artichoke.

5. British Airways

The food found in the first class section of British Airways is so bougie we can’t even deal. At one point, the menu was designed by celebrity Michelin-starred chef, Heston Blumenthal. While the menu items change frequently, British Airways has been known to serve Gressingham duck with caramelized apple, parsley sauce, and braised kohlrabi, and lemon-cured salmon gravlax with caviar. The airline is also famous for their first class high tea accompanied by cakes, sandwiches, and teas from around the world, their impeccable cheese offerings, and their delicious scones with clotted cream and preserves. Bonus points: the scones are freshly baked on the aircraft.

6. Qantas

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Qantas, which calls Australia its home base, cooks every single food item fresh on the plane whereas many airlines are known to just reheat previously cooked items in a microwave or toaster oven. This is impressive in its own right, but once we share some of their staple items, you’ll wonder how this feat is even possible. Sample menu items found on the first class menu include venison carpaccio salad, pan-fried blue-eyed filet with black bean, and linguine with roasted butternut, pine nuts, and sage butter. For dessert, they have baked lemon pudding with plums, and fresh chocolate macarons with raspberries. Seriously, how is this possible? Might be some Aussie magic.

7. Swiss Airlines

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Swiss Airlines has a pretty strong in-flight menu, but they really shine in the finer touches. For example, each meal, regardless of what you order, is accompanied by a selection of fresh cheeses and Sprüngli chocolates. They also offer an optional wine pairing alongside their refined meal offerings like seared beef tenderloin with lobster slaw, crab cocktail, and watercress butter. Another novelty is the fact that Swiss Airlines worked with a restaurant called Hiltl to provide vegetarian meals to customers who follow a meat-free diet. Hiltl just so happens to be the world’s first vegetarian restaurant in existence, and it’s clear the Swiss share great pride in that.

8. Cathay Pacific

Even though Cathay Pacific is based out of Hong Kong, they serve food items from all over the world. Standout options include ricotta ravioli with tomato ragu and arugula, and chicken breast with chanterelle mushrooms and lemon confit. If you want an Asian-inspired dish, they also serve items like chicken with soy sauce, steamed rice and shiitake mushrooms. All of these superior food items are made possible by the airline’s extensive kitchens, which have been known to have basically any appliance you could ever need, including rice cookers, steam ovens, and toasters. Cathay Pacific also has a pretty impressive wine program, which is evidenced by the fact that 1.65 million bottles of wine were consumed by the airline’s passengers in 2013.

9. Qatar Airways

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Qatar Airways really goes above and beyond by recruiting not just one Michelin-starred chef to design their menu, but four. These chefs include Tom Aikens, Ramzi Choueiri, Nobu Matsuhisa and Vineet Bhatia, who specialize in French, Middle Eastern, Japanese, and Indian cuisines, respectively. These chefs have created dishes like the mixed grill with lamb chops and kefta, chicken tikka with saffron rice, oven-roasted salmon, and daal with cucumber and carrot salad. Qatar Airways also has a committee entirely devoted to wine comprised of two International Masters of Wine, who convene bi-annually to redesign the menu.

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Features

The Top 6 Airlines Serving Proper, Edible Food

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Everyone loves to complain about how awful airplane food is — inedible, greasy, and an embarrassment to meals on land. But, we’ve managed to find six airlines that actually bring gourmet goodness to 30,000ft. Rather than show you glossy images from plane PRs, we’ve sourced real, honest-to-goodness shots of what’s on offer, so loosen that belt buckle and enjoy:

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6. Etihad Airways

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The Abu Dhabi-based airline recruited for its “Flying Chef” program at Michelin-starred restaurants around the world. Their goal is to offer the service and standard of food you’d experience at a five-star restaurant, in first class. Didn’t score first class seats for this (or any) flight? Etihad’s fairly equal opportunity — meals in coach still deliver when it comes to both taste and selection.

North American gateways: Chicago, Washington DC, New York, and Toronto.

Photo: Sarah_Ackerman

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5. Cathay Pacific

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As one of the first and few airlines to carry in-house skillets, toasters, rice cookers, and steam ovens, travelers wake up to made-to-order fresh toast, organic scrambled eggs, and espresso or cappuccino. Even premium economy passengers are served with metal cutlery, and get Häagen-Dazs for dessert. Still hungry in the back? Everyone’s entitled to unlimited Cup Noodles throughout the flight.

North American gateways: Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York, Chicago, Vancouver, and Toronto.

Photo: Sarah_Ackerman

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4. Singapore Airlines

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This bird’s known for catering meals to each of its specific destinations — experience Hong Kong-style noodles and braised beef short ribs in Chinese wine when you’re headed that-a-way, a traditional Japanese tea service if Tokyo-bound, an incredible thali en route to Delhi, and so on. They put experts in charge — two-time James Beard award winner Suzanne Goin, Michelin three-star restaurant owner and head chef Georges Blanc, and local celebrity Singaporean chef Sam Leong — just to name a few.

North American gateways: San Francisco, Los Angeles, Houston and New York.

Photo: Richard Moross

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3. Emirates

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Flying first class? Don’t plan on getting any sleep in that fancy lie-flat bed of yours. There’s no time — seven-course meals must be had! If money is an object, and all of yours would fit into your carry-on, don’t fret — dinner in economy starts with slices of smoked tuna served with marinated vegetable salad, followed by a lamb brochette, accompanied by broccoli, roasted baby corn, and steamed rice. Top it off with sticky date pudding, cheese and biscuits, brandy, and chocolate.

North American gateways: Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Dallas, Houston, Toronto, Washington DC, New York, and Boston.

Photo: Andy Mitchell

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2. Air France

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Thibaut Ruggeri, winner of the Bocuse d’Or 2013, and general, all-around fancy-sounding chef, is the man behind Air France’s onboard menus. But don’t get too comfy, Thi-bo — the carrier chooses a new, world-famous chef to recreate their entire raft of meal options every eight months. Frequent (French) Fliers, no need to fear repetition; whatever the route, the meal program is swapped out for another one every ten days.

North American gateways: San Francisco, Los Angeles, Mexico City, Houston, Minneapolis, Detroit, Chicago, Atlanta, Miami, Washington DC, New York, Boston, Montreal, and Toronto.

Photo: Takato Marui

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1. Turkish Airlines

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Once again numero uno for ‘best food and beverage’ at this year’s Passenger Choice Awards, Turkish takes the delight and brings it up a notch come meal time. As passengers board, they’re greeted by the flight’s chef (complete in whites and silly hat), as if they’re walking into a restaurant. Go local and opt for appetizers like stuffed eggplant marinated in olive oil, followed by grilled beef with creamy eggplant. M’kay, time to eat.

North American gateways: Los Angeles, Houston, Chicago, Washington DC, Toronto, New York, and Boston.

Photo: Jun Sieta

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