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January 5, 2014 / oneworld82

Lufthansa never fails (me): DFW-FRA on LH (new) First Class

IBI arrived at DFW Airport Terminal D about one hour prior our scheduled departure time. Interesting fact: to get to the airport I used Uber – my very first time – and I liked the product/concept a lot.

DSC_0006 DSC_0007 DSC_0008The flight was 50 minutes late due to strong headwinds, and the agent who checked me in informed me that the new boading time would now be 4:40pm; not a big problem, as that would allow me to have dinner at a more appropriate time. The check-in counters looked rather busy today, and I was not offered an escort to the lounge (contrarily to what happened in August). 

I proceeded to a not-to-busy security line and in a breeze I was at the contracted Lufthansa Lounge. The business class side was pretty busy, so I decided to go to the more secluded First Class part. This room is smaller, quitter, has better food and the lounge staff comes by every 5 minutes or so to make sure everything is alright. Lufthansa clearly knows what it’s doing!

First Class Lounge section

First Class Lounge section

Small food spread

Small food spread

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After a beer and some light snacks, a Lufthansa lady came to pick us up and to escort us to our plane. I like details, and LH certainly takes good care of them. The attendant made sure we entered the priority line for First Class passengers to board first. After 5 minutes, boarding started, and we took our seats in the new A330 First Class cabin.

Having tried the new first class on the 747-400, I knew what to expect. And I liked what I saw. Granted, there is no bed on this plane – which detracts the “wow” factor a bit; but everthing else is just as nice and as impressive.

Lufthansa new First Class

Lufthansa new First Class

Big TV

Big TV

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Comprehensive Rimowa amenity kit & pajamas

Comprehensive Rimowa amenity kit & pajamas

Comfortable and wide seat

Comfortable and wide seat

Pre-departure drinks display

Pre-departure drinks display

Take the seat, for example: wide, comfortable, adjustable. I had no trouble in finding a configuration that fitted my preferences. Or take the front cabin beverages display: neat, ordered, stylish. Because – once again – Lufthansa seems to take particular care of details, living the Teutonic stereotype to the letter. The rose adorning each seat is a simple yet delicate touch that makes everything feel just special.

My new Bally bag ;)

My new Bally bag

After sitting down, the flight attendant and purser serving the cabin came to greet us and take our coats away. They both were well-seasoned and provided us with impeccable service. A first round of drinks was provided, and I toasted with some Krug and the usual, tasty macadamias. Before taking off, I ended up having three glasses – a great kick off to my vacation.

Ready to go!

Ready to go!

Can't say "no" to macadamia!

Can’t say “no” to macadamia!

The captain announced that the flight would land on time in spite of the initial delay and that some turbulence could be experienced due to the same strong winds that caused the inbound flight delay. We took off smoothly and – sure enough – the first hour or so of the flight was rather choppy. Nevertheless, the service was flawless and uninterrupted most of the time.

The new first class seat is very nice. While not necessarily as private as other suites, it allows to travel next to a companion and it allows for a good privacy given all the retractable dividers it has. The remote controls are on each side of the seat (really comfortable indeed): on your right you have the tv remote (with pad-like functionalities for an easy, fast use) and on the left side you have the seat controls pad (easy to use as well, very intuitive). On the right hand side you have a quick-access pad as well where you cn easily stop/start your tv, control lighting, summon a flight attendant: a very handy tool. I really like Lufthansa’s new first class, it feels stylish and luxurious without being pretentious. The TV is big, of sharp definition.

Details matter

Details matter

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Lufthansa First Class

Shortly after taking off, meal orders were taken from the menu, which read as follows:

Caviar from Service Cart

Caviar with the traditional Garnishes

Choice of Appetizers

Citrus cured Scallops

Seared Beef Tataki with Papaya Salad and roasted Peanuts

Beet Ravioli with Balsamic Glaze

Fresh Salad with yellow roasted Tomatoes presented with delicious Dressing

Choice of Main Courses

Tenderloin of Beef with Plum Chutney, roasted Yukon and Leek

Butter poached Lobster with Butternut Squash and Fingerling Potato

Stir-fried Egg Noodles with Eggplant

Roasted Chicken Breast with Sesame Glaze and Bok Choy, Quinoa

Pumpkin Stew with Ginger Chicken

Selection of Cheese and Dessert

Sage Derby, Parmesan, Gruyère, Cambozola, Humboldt Fog garnished with Grapes

Warm Chocolate Cake

Crème Caramel Flan with Orange Segments

Tonight  I opted for the fillet of beef, while my friend went for the lobster. I asked for a Campari & soda as aperitif, which was served with a cucumber, salmon, and roes amuse bouche. Not bad at all.

Campari & soda + amuse bouche

Campari & soda + amuse bouche

Lufthansa First Class

Shortly after, the table was set and a basket of bread (from which I chose some good pretzel bread) was passed around.

Ready for dinner

Ready for dinner

After some choppiness cleared, the proper meal started with caviar, served from the cart. This stuff never ceases to amaze me for its deliciousness. The generous serving was well presented and accompanied by all the works required by the situation. I really need to try Beluga someday (when I can afford it!). The caviar was served with vodka – I missed the brand but it was certainly decent quality stuff (smooth to the palate, gentle to the throath).

Propoer caviar service (with vodka)

Propoer caviar service (with vodka)

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After the caviar, another cart with appetizers came along. Today’s menu featured Tony […] of the Mandarin Oriental New York, creating another eclectic mixture of Asian-influenced, Western cuisine.

I went for all three dishes for the sake of reviewing them (of course!). I started with the scallop, presented cold. The texture and flavor were both good, the complementing sauce matched the seafood very well. Overall, a good appetizer.

Scallop

Scallop

The second appetizer was the beet ravioli. Let me say this straight: I was very skeptical of it. I am usually skeptical of anything involving the word beet to begin with; but Lufthansa proved my fears unfounded. The “ravioli” actually consisted of two thin slices of beet that enclosed a filling of thick cheese and herbs; the dish was delicate yet flavorful at once. A true surprise and a delight for the palate.

Beet ravioli

Beet ravioli

But the real winner among the three appetizers was the beef tataki. I am not entirely sure what a “tataki” is – it seemed to be some sort of rare-cooked, thinly-sliced beef; what made it very tasty was the balsamic glaze on top. I really can’t exactly describe the taste and the flavors of the dish, but if you take my word for it, the beef was delicious.

Beef tataki - amazing!

Beef tataki – amazing!

Not too long after finishing with the appetizers (and after the table was properly cleared), the mains were served. I went for the beef fillet, while my friend opted for the lobster.

Beef

Beef

Now, I have had many steaks aboard planes – on AA, on EY, on QF for instance; this fillet beat them all – hands down.

I do not know how they did it, but the meat was incredibly soft, tender, cooked medium (I prefer medium-rare, but I can’t complain). It was a really flavorful piece of meat served with potatoes and complemented by a thick, flavorful sauce. A true winner. I had the steak with Maximiamo […], a Chilean red with medium body and rich notes of berries.

My friend’s lobster was not bad – although the meat was too dry to be considered a great dish. The boiled potatoes and leeks accompanying it gave a distinct German flavor to the dish, which was overall good.

Lobster

Lobster

All this incredible amount of food was followed by cheese and dessert. I opted to try all the different cheeses on offer – and I was not disappointed. For dessert, I went for the flan; while I had had better ones in my life, this one was certainly most edible. All of this was accompanied by some good vintage Port wine, followed by a cappuccino and some chocolates.

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Overall, the meal was a winner – well executed, well presented, tasty, original. I would say it was better than the meal I had in August, and overall of excellent quality. Well done, Lufthansa.

Right after the meal I changed into my pajamas and while the flight attendant saw me doing so, she offered to make up my bed. I got a size L this time which worked great (I am 5’11” tall). The bed was promptly prepared, and it was just as comfortable as I remembered. I capped my night with a glass of Blue Label, and while watching an interesting Japanese movie I fell asleep (BOSE noise-cancelling headphones helped indeed!)

My bed!

My bed!

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Lavatory with a view

Lavatory with a view

I slept solidly for 3/4 hours before the flight attendant came by to wake me up. It was a peaceful and restful sleep. As you can imagine, we weren’t much hungry at that point, and we both opted for something light (muesli). The set up and the food were both good, as expected.

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We landed right on time despite our late departure in a rainy Frankfurt. Luck wanted that we parked at a remote stand, meaning that we got a special Mercedes van pickup. A classy way to get to the terminal indeed 🙂

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Our pickup!

Our pickup!

Comfortable seating

Comfortable seats

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Overall, this was another excellent Lufthansa flight. Both hard and soft products were excellent, and the airline managed to meet my (high) expectations once again. Well done, Lufthansa. I look forward to flying you again!

P.S.

– At the end of this report, you’ll find out how LH compared to BA First.

return

2 Comments

Leave a Comment
  1. Kurt Alfred Kluever / Jan 5 2014 10:29 pm

    “As you can imagine, we weren’t much angry at that point, and we both opted for something light (muesli)”
    I think you mean “hungry”, not “angry”?

    Also, that Bally bag looks great! Which model is it?

    • robertocusato / Jan 5 2014 10:56 pm

      Hi Kurt,

      thanks for the correction 🙂 I am glad you like my Bally bag – I love it! It’s the Terret weekender bag – small one; very good quality indeed!

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