Yummy Balinese fish and Padang chicken with 'nasi uduk'!
It was finally time to say goodbye the Netherlands. Instead of flying with KLM again to return to Singapore directly, I purposely booked an open-jaw ticket that allowed me to fly with Garuda Indonesia to the bustling (read: prone to terrible traffic jams) capital city of Jakarta. Let's see how the airline, which has obtained the much coveted status of a Skytrax 5 Star Airline, fares in its long-haul flight.
Having been previously banned from entering the European Union due to its failure to meet the safety standards and requirements, Garuda Indonesia has bounced back as the world's most improved airline. To date, this flight of approximately 14 hours is the longest non-stop flight I've ever taken in my life.
GA Snack #1
A packet of savoury mixed nuts was handed out to each passenger as soon as the seat belt sign had been switched off. To accompany it, I requested for a cup of apple juice.
GA Meal #1
Egg Salad with Chicken Ham - Taste: 8/10
The egg salad was creamy and savoury, topped with a piece of moist chicken ham that was pretty thick. The cherry tomato was juicy.
Fried Fish in Balinese Sauce, Steamed Rice, Sauteed Vegetables - Taste: 8.5/10
The Indonesian option featured during the dinner service that day was a truly spicy Balinese fish dish that really whetted my appetite. It went really well with the well-cooked steamed rice, as well as the sauteed vegetables that weren't soggy.
Beef in Green Peppercorn, Potato Gratin, Roasted Carrots - Taste: 8/10
For the Western counterpart, beef cubes and onions were cooked in brown sauce that was enjoyably sweet and mildly spicy. The roasted carrots were sweet as well, but they could be moister. The potato gratin was cheesy alright.
Miso Soup - Taste: 7/10
I was a little bit surprised when the flight attendant said that miso (Japanese fermented rice, barley and/or soybean) soup was available onboard, making it truly an international dinner. There wasn't anything to complain about it, although perhaps I could have more of the tofu cubes.
Cherry Cake - Taste: 8/10
Much to my pleasure, the dessert wasn't too heavy. Topped with a bit of white chocolate curls, the cake was adequately sweet with enough cherry jam to impart a degree of sourness.
While the outer layer of the bread was a tad dry, its inside was pretty soft.
I enjoyed the Dutch gouda cheese, as well as the salted crackers.
I opted for a glass of normal Coca-Cola. Apart from a variety of fruit juice, a small selection of beer, wine and spirit was available. Pika's advice: Many Indonesians love guava, so you can expect guava juice onboard.
GA Snack #2
Cream Cheese Sandwich - Taste: 8.5/10
Many people had fallen asleep mid-flight, but not me. As such, I had the opportunity to try the cream cheese sandwich, which turned out to be amazing. The savoury cheese filling met crunchy lettuce and soft bun. From the galley, I took a muesli bar, together with another cup of apple juice.
GA Meal #2
Chicken in Kalio Sauce, Steamed Coconut Rice, Scrambled Eggs - Taste: 8.5/10
Once again, the Indonesian dish shone. A recipe from West Sumatra, the spicy chicken was bathed in creamy sauce made of coconut milk and spices. The accompanying nasi uduk, that's the steamed coconut rice, was equally delectable and fragrant. It was topped with scrambled eggs and fried shallots.
Chicken Sausage, Scrambled Eggs, Hash Brown, Baked beans - Taste: 8/10
The Western option featured chicken as well in the form of a bouncy sausage. It was accompanied by a scoop of scrambled eggs that were quite creamy, hash brown pieces and canned baked beans.
Unfortunately, the croissant was in such a sorry, soggy state. To tell the truth, it was actually nicely buttery.
Raspberry yogurt was served. It came with raspberry bits.
The cut fruits - red apple, green apple, pineapple and orange - were sweet, but not entirely fresh.
To accompany the breakfast set, I requested for a cup of orange juice.
Taste: 8/10Ambience: 8/10
Good food aside, the flight attendants were amiable and helpful. It was all indeed the fruit of the Quantum Leap, the aggressive modernisation plan that the company undertook in 2009. Anyway, I purposely booked a seat for Pikachu and Melon to share as shown in the photo below. No, I was just kidding. The flight was only about 60% occupied, so my BFF and I got the middle row to ourselves. Thank you for the experience, Garuda Indonesia! :)
*No separate price given as meals are included in the ticket price.
Have a nice meal,