Food

Coffee-making robot coming to Austin-Bergstrom airport

Austin-Bergstrom International Airport is well-loved for its weekly schedule of live, local music and for the great array of local food outlets in the terminals.

Now AUS is getting a new “attraction” – a robotic coffee-making machine, courtesy of Austin-based Briggo.

The machine will be located across from Gate 8 and travelers will be able to order coffee, hot chocolate or Chai tea via an app or at the machine. App users will get a text when their order is ready to pick up.

Briggo says theirs is the first app-based, robotic, 24/7 specialty coffee system installed in an airport, although Orville the robot prepares and delivers coffee in the IT Experience Zone in Terminal 2 at Incheon International Airport in South Korea – photo below.

Southwest Airlines nixes peanuts starting August 1

Giving way to the concerns of passengers who have peanut allergies, Southwest Airlines has announced that, as of August 1, it will stop serving those tiny little packets of peanuts during flights.
“Peanuts forever will be part of Southwest’s history and DNA,” the airline said in a statement, “However, to ensure the best on-board experience for everyone, especially for customers with peanut-related allergies, we’ve made the difficult decision to discontinue serving peanuts on all flights beginning August 1.”
On its website, Southwest has told passengers with peanut allergies that if they made a note in their reservation, an effort would be made to make sure no peanuts would be served on their flights. But that didn’t always work out.
Other airlines stopped serving peanuts long ago, but for Southwest peanuts are part of the company’s branding. The airline is often “nuts” about this or that and has a quarterly newsletter called “In a Nutshell.”
Starting next month, the airline hopes passengers will pleased with the pretzels that continue to be served on flights, along with the other free snacks distributed on longer flights.

“Our ultimate goal is to create an environment where all customers—including those with peanut-related allergies—feel safe and welcome on every Southwest flight,” Southwest said in its statement.

Airline food that’s out of this world

When astronauts do a stint on the International Space Station they may request and bring along “bonus” snacks and meals for special occasions.

This summer, passengers departing on Lufthansa’s long-haul flights from Germany can “Eat like an astronaut” by ordering one of the dishes, Chicken Ragout with Mushrooms, that the airline’s kitchens prepared for German European Space Agency astronaut Alexander Gerst, who set out for the International Space Station (ISS) on June 6.

Keeping in mind the special requirements of space food – i.e. that it will be consumed in zero gravity – Lufthansa says its LSG Group Culinary Excellence Team worked with the European Space Agency to provide six special meals for Gerst and the Horizons mission.

“The collection includes typical dishes from the astronaut’s home region, Swabia, such as Maultaschen and Spätzle,” said Lufthansa in a statement, “In order to ensure that the meals fulfilled the specific health and safety requirements of the mission, the LSG Group team designed them as low sodium and able to maintain a shelf life of two years.”

Not flying Lufthansa this summer? Through late October, the business premier menu on Air New Zealand flights from Los Angeles to Auckland will include the popular vegetarian hamburger called the Impossible Burger.

Courtesy Air New Zealand

“Impossible Burger’s magic ingredient is an iron-containing molecule called heme which comes from the roots of soy plants,” notes ANZ, “The heme in the Impossible Burger is the same as the heme found in animal meat. The result is a plant-based burger patty that cooks, smells and tastes like beef but contains no animal products whatsoever.”

Sounds like space food to me.

Souvenir Sunday: Sydney Airport

Beyond memories, it’s a good idea to bring home souvenirs to remind us of our adventures out in the world.

I found this addition to my growing collection of chocolate ‘poo’ at Syndey Airport, on my way home from a conference.

Just another example of the fun, inexpensive, locally-themed gifts you can find when you’re stuck at the airport.

Have you found a fun, somewhat odd gift at an airport? Snap a photo and send it along to us here at StuckatTheAirport.com. If your photo is used in a future post, you’ll receive a fun souvenir as a thank-you.

 

Fresh food & drink options at Raleigh-Durham and St. Louis airports

NASCAR legend Dale Earnhardt Jr. has teamed up with HMSHost to open the Whisky River restaurant and bar at Raleigh-Durham International Airport.

The menu looks suitably honky-tonkyish, with Spicy Beef Chili, Beer Can Chicken, Texas Tequila Bacon Cheddar Burger and (for breakfast) Peaches & Cream Pancakes and Carolina Biscuits.

But what really makes this spot a nominee for airport amenity of the week is the fact that there’s a wall covered in belt buckles, live music six days week and a ‘made-for-selfies’ stationary bull that passengers may sit on.

Meanwhile, Three Kings Public House has opened in Terminal 2 (by Gate E33) in St. Louis Lambert International Airport (STL).

The popular St. Louis-based pub honors three kings – Elvis, Henry VIII and King Kong – has three locations in town and at this fourth ‘streamlined’ airport branch will be serving pub food, house-made infused liquors, local craft brews and an extensive list of specialty beers including the Three Kings Dry Hopped Blonde Ale, made by 4 Hands just for these pubs.

Enjoy!