It’s time to clear the glasses for take-off. Once we were airborne and the captain turned off the seat belt sign, the flight attendants sprang to actions. We were pouring over the Business Menu and decide what we were going to select in terms of wines. For white, SQ made available 2 labels: a 2010 Joseph Drouhin Saint-Veran from Maconnai, Burgundy and a 2010 Weinhaus Ress Riesling from Rheingau, Germany. For red, there were a 2008 Chateau la Garde from Bordeaux and a 2009 Marchesi de Frescobaldi Tenuta di Castiglioni from Tuscany. There was even a 2006 Dow’s Late Bottled Vintage from Douro, Portugal.
Our flight attendants always either bent over at a 70 degree angle or knelt down on the floor every time she came asking us if we’d like something. I guess it’s part of SQ’s training and style to have flight attendants not to look down on business passengers. We had 3 choices for the main entrees: one pork dish with a Western profile, one chicken dish with an Asian profile and another fish dish with an Asian profile. Vegetarians would have been out of luck. And it was going to be a tray service, instead of a cart service today.
Once we made our choices, the flight attendant quickly came back with our trays with the appetizer already on it along with water, salt and pepper shakers, butter, and silverware wrapped in white cloth napkin. Today’s appetizer was Sautéed prawns in Cajun spices with grilled zucchini and a capsicum pesto and large marinated olives—all very well presented just like at a restaurant on the ground. Next came a selection of warm breads. I finished my appetizer long, long before my entrée arrived at my table. The flight attendant walked by often but for some reason, my selection of fish entrée was forgotten. When my partner almost finished his main dish, my fish arrived with an apology from her. The upside of the food glitch is that I had the chance to nibble at the Berkshire pork dish. Any fan of George Orwell’s Animal Farm might remember that Napoleon, the antagonist, is in fact a Berkshire. Those are a rare breed, supposedly Britain’s oldest breed, originating from Berkshire County, in southeast England. The pork is prized for its tenderness, flavor, and juiciness. It’s pink-hued and heavily marbled. The high fat content makes it ideal for long or high temperature cooking.
And true to its reputation, the pork was extremely flavorful and tender. The coffee cider sauce gave it a unique tone of spiciness and earthiness. The acidity in the cider brightened the sauce and counterbalanced the richness of the pork. Apple and pork is a winning combination, as evidenced in the American classic pork chop and apple sauce.