Food

Airport Restaurant Month

60 airport restaurants participating

October is Airport Restaurant Month at more than 60 HMSHost restaurants in more than 40 airports around the country.

And this year there’s a fun contest on the menu.

Airport Restaurant Month features tasting menus much like those you’ll find in many cities this time year: diners can select from three appetizers and a variety of entrees.

Menus may vary slightly by restaurant, but some of the core Airport Restaurant Month dishes include: 

·      Orecchiette Pasta featuring sautéed super-food greens, parmesan, and buttered herb breadcrumbs

·      Shrimp Scampi Flatbread with garlic shrimp, grape tomatoes, mozzarella, lemon zest, and red pepper flakes

·      Harissa Burger topped with arugula, pickled red onions, harissa aioli, provolone cheese, and smoked bacon

·      Crispy Chicken Sandwich with crunchy Asian slaw, gochujang BBQ sauce, and pickle chips

Now here’s the contest part, which runs through October 31, 2019:

When you eat at one of the participating HMSHost restaurants, ask for an Airport Restaurant Month Passport.

Collect a passport stamp for each Airport Restaurant Dish you purchase.

When you have four stamps, snap a photo of the completed passport and post the image to Facebook, Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #airportrestaurantmonth. Be sure to also tag @HMSHost.

At the end of October 2019, HMSHost will choose a winner at random. The prize will include airfare, a hotel stay and dinner at a James Beard award-winning restaurant in New York City for the winner and a guest. See the full contest rules for Airport Restaurant Month.

Travel Tidbits from an airport near you

Free paletas at LAX

Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) is celebrating Latino Heritage Month with a wide variety of cultural performances, art and guest experiences, including complimentary tastings.

Today, Friday, Sept 20 there will be a cart with free paletas (Mexican popsicles) in Terminal 1 near the L.A. Original store from noon to 3 p.m.

Next Friday, Sept. 27, the cart will be in Terminal 2, next to Barney’s Beanery, from noon to 3 p.m. And on Friday, Oct. 4, free paletas will be offered in the Terminal 6 W Kitchen Food Court from noon to 3 p.m.

TPA has a special drink

This may be a first: Tampa International Airport (TPA) has a airport-wide, signature cocktail.

On September 13, TPA rolled out The Spirit of Flight, a signature cocktail that is now available at all restaurants and bars airport-wide.

The one-of-a-kind cocktail is a blend of guava, white rum and orange and is meant to give travelers a taste of Tampa Bay.

To come up with the perfect drink, TPA called in mixologists from Ulele, Mise en Place and Cigar City Brewing – three of Tampa Bay’s well-known concepts.

“We wanted to create a drink that would represent the area,” said Ulele Manager Phil Cacciatore, who helped craft the drink. “We wanted guests to think ‘Wow this is unique.’”

Guests who order the drink will receive a Spirit of Flight coaster with the ingredients listed on the back, so whenever they see it, they’re reminded of their trip to Tampa.

The drink is also available in non-alcoholic version.

Here are the ingredients and mixing instructions in case you’d like to try this at home.

2 oz Guava Nectar

1 tbsp Guava Marmalade

1 oz Florida Orange Juice

1.50 oz White Rum

0.50 oz Orange Liqueur

2 dashes Angostura Bitters

Shake all ingredients and strain over ice into a Collins glass.

Garnish with a slice of orange and mint leaf.

SFO’s plastic water bottle ban.

The ban on the sale of single-use plastic water bottles at San Francisco International Airport (SFO) goes into effect on September 20th.

The move requires all airport retailers, restaurants, airline lounges, and vending machines to sell or provide water in recyclable aluminum, glass or BPI-certified compostable bottles.

The policy applies to purified water, mineral water, carbonated or sparkling water, and electrolyte-enhanced water, but does not include flavored beverages such as sodas, teas, or juices.

In a statement, SFO says it has provided retailers with a list of approved alternatives to plastic water bottles and will continue to update this list as the market for plastic-free bottled water evolves.

Of course, you don’t need to buy a bottle of water at SFO. A great option is to bring along a reusable container and fill it up at any of SFO’s approximately 100 free Hydration Stations and drinking fountains, located in all terminals both pre- and post-security.

If you don’t have your own bottle, Brita will help you out. On September 20, when the single-use plastic water bottle ban goes into effect at SFO, Brita will hand out more than 1000 complimentary Stainless Steel Premium Filtering Water Bottles. These have a double wall insulation to keep water cold for up to 24 hours and come with a replaceable filter that reduces chlorine taste and odor.

Airport amenity of the week: free snacks at O’Hare and Midway Airports

Free food at the airport? Yes, thank-you.

The Taste of Chicago music and food festival takes place in Chicago’s Grant Park July 10 to 14, 2019, but there are also free tastings and special discounts being offering for travelers passing through O’Hare International and Midway Airports this week.

And although it is only Wednesday, we’re declaring this StuckatTheAirport.com’s Airport Amenity of the Week.

LAX food truck serves up tacos

Eating at airports. We’ve all got our go-to places at the airports we often travel to and through. And there are foods we seek out wherever we might land.

For taco lovers, there’s a new option at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX).

Chicken Street Taco’s on wood

Leo’s Xpress, associated with Los Angeles’ famed Leo’s Tacos Truck, is the latest local food concept in LAX’s rotating food truck concept by restaurateur HMSHost and its Airport Concessions Disadvantaged Business Enterprise partner Havana House.  

The indoor truck is located in the LAX Terminal 4 food hall.

At LAX, Leo’s Xpress menu offers donw-to-earth prices and offers travelers a great range of authentic taste of Mexican street food.

Along with the popular Al Pastor tacos – named among the best in LA – Leo’s serves freshly made tacos, quesadillas, burritos, alambres, and tortas. Each can be accompanied with a selection of toppings from the salsa bar.

Early morning to late-night travelers can also savor Leo’s all-day breakfast menu of Huevos Rancheros, Breakfast Tacos, and Breakfast Burritos.

Leo’s Xpress at LAX originated from Leo’s Tacos Truck which has been serving its fresh and affordable tacos since 2010. It started in West Los Angeles and expanded to four truck locations from Koreatown and Echo Park to the Valley. While Leo’s developed a loyal local following, it’s received national recognition appearing on various best of food truck lists in top publications including Fodor’s Travel and PEOPLE.

Have a favorite spot to recommend at LAX or another airport? Please send it along.