Swiss Is Offering A Caviar Tasting In First Class (For A Limited Time)

The international first class experience just keeps getting more and more over the top. With limits on how much better airlines can make their first class suites, they’ve largely turned to their soft product to differentiate themselves.

While some things are unnecessarily over the top and arguably gimmicks, that doesn’t mean they’re not at least worth mentioning. For example, I recently flew Singapore Suites and wasn’t just offered the typical choice of Dom Perignon or Krug, but this time around they were serving 2004 vintage Krug, which is insanely pricey.

Then you have airlines like Emirates, which serve Hennessy Paradis in first class.

There are plenty of airlines that offer a caviar service in first class, though there is some variance in terms of the quality and how it’s presented.

However, it looks like one airline takes their caviar service to the next level, and this is the first I’ve heard of it. Swiss runs what they call the “Connoisseur Experience,” where they offer special services four times a year in first class. Each special service lasts for just two weeks.

Specifically, for the first two weeks of February they offer a special seafood tasting.

Then for the first two weeks of May they offer a special caviar tasting.

Then for the first two weeks of August they offer a steakhouse experience.

Lastly, for the first two weeks of November they offer a special white truffles service.

It goes without saying that it’s probably not worth booking yourself on a flight just to experience this. However, as an airline product geek, I’d like to think that I know the highlights of virtually all airlines’ international first class service. So I’m surprised I had never heard of Swiss’ intriguing Connoisseur Experience program.

Swiss’ caviar service in May is especially intriguing. I wonder if each passenger actually gets three (presumably fairly small) tins of caviar to compare them, as is shown in the picture, or if in reality they just plate small portions of each. Swiss typically doesn’t offer a caviar service of any kind in first class, though their first class meal service is still excellent.

Here’s a review I wrote a while back about my experience flying Swiss first class from Zurich to Los Angeles.

Unfortunately Swiss doesn’t make first class award space available to partner airlines, though they do sometimes have attractive first class fares.

Has anyone flown Swiss first class during one of their Connoisseur Experience periods? What was it like?

(Tip of the hat to CB)

Comments

  1. Swiss F food ex ZRH was by far some of the best food I’ve had on a plane. Service was impeccable as well. Didn’t hurt that I was the only one in F that day, but still. LH service for the most part in F is great, but Swiss outdid LH in every way except for the ground experience. If only they offered a car service to the plane as well!

  2. Not impressed by the thickness of the steak. The strip steak I had on cx f was twice as thick and a perfect medium rare

  3. I fly 1st class on a regular basis ( haters gonna hate). In my experience, Swiss Airline and Switzerland are way overrated and overpriced for what you get. Just like in Norway, Denmark, you pay up to 4 times for things you would get with a smile and professionalism in East Asia. My favourite remain Cathay Pacific, Japan Airlines and Singapore

  4. You can order it when travelling first with swiss and LUFTHANSA as i do it all the time.
    And it’s the real Iranian Caspian sea sourced caviar not the toxic garbage from shithole China.

  5. This makes me extremely bitter as we were booked on Swiss F (as part of the Aeroplan Debacle) during the may promotion and would have loved to do this!

  6. I keep missing these. They have been doing this for 1-2 years already. Honestly, I would rather they have a different champagne every now and then. I like grand siècle, but they could mix it up. I like caviar, but I prefer the balik. Honestly I’ve had very few steaks that where great in the air. It’s usually the worst choice.

  7. Flew F this afternoon from ZRH to JFK as an upgrade from J b/c of an oversold flight (caused by the East coast storms) and had the seafood tasting menu. It was really amazing!!

    Overall though, I found swiss F really medicore. The seat is old and dirty. The bathroom is impossibly tiny, nobody even changed into the PJs as there was no space to. The food was good but nothing over the top. Amenity kit average. Service was great (FA was embarrassingly bad with his cheese though, he kept looking at his cheat sheet and trying to figure out what was what…. The only thing he got right was telling the cow milk vs goat milk ones apart). Arrival escort is a nice touch. Lounge A+. Would still choose LH, SQ, or EY F over LX.

  8. While I like caviar the white truffle special sounds the most unique. Lots of airlines have caviar in F but I don’t recall ever seeing white truffles on offer by an airline before.

  9. The white Alba truffle menu was amazing on LX F ZRH-ORD last November – with very generous portions. AFAIK LX offers its Connoiseur Menu on ex ZRH/GVA flights only.

  10. While this may excite people, it does not so with me. I buy BC or EC to fly in comfort and am blessed with being able to sleep very well on planes. So the biggest favor any crew can do me is to get the meal service out of the way in 15 mts.
    For me it is all about the chair/bed and space and VIP service through immigration like GA offers.
    Tiny lavatories on BC/FC I hate. Back in the day when SQ still flew their A340 SIN-EWR the biggest turnoff was the extremely tiny lavatories eventhough there was plenty of space to have added at least another 50 cm of width.

  11. Wow…Lucky and so many others here still seem bitter about Swiss not honoring those cheap tickets from a while back. The funniest shade thrown at Swiss so far?

    “The bathroom is impossibly tiny, nobody even changed into the PJs as there was no space to.”

    Yeah, sure, ok.

  12. I have nothing to do with the cheap tickets on LX. I clearly mentioned getting an operational upgrade due to a storm….and yes, the bathroom is very tiny. Have you actually flown an LX A330 in First? I didn’t think so.

  13. Sure you don’t, nagul, sure you don’t…

    And yes I have. It’s no Emirates A380 FC bathroom, but any normal sized person should have no problems changing in it.

  14. No, it’s not normal sized. You must suffer from anorexia. Out of the 8 pax in F today, there were 6/8 who were quite a bit overweight and none of them were going to be able to change in there.

    – Nazgul, not nagul

  15. Nah, I’m an average sized person. I’ve never seen any overweight people not be able to change in there, unless they are extremely obese (not the same thing).

    Yeah, I noticed I wrote your name wrong and corrected the oversight. Strange you didn’t notice that. Lord only knows what else you might be missing.

  16. Also, I did not say the bathroom was normal sized, I said “any normal sized person should have no problems changing in it.”

  17. Ladies , it’s no fun to watch a fight unless you curse and pull each other’s hair.

    Entertain us!

  18. I’ve experienced the Steakhouse last year. I don’t eat beef, so I had the special chicken breast, which was really good. But the best part were all the sides you get to select from (and by select I mean I’ve had hem all 😉
    But for me, what one should never skip on Swiss First is the soup.

  19. Don‘t you have any other problems like talking about Caviar in First class? I would like to have your problems.

  20. I fly in Swiss first frequently between BOS and ZRH – being based in Zurich.

    In 2016, Swiss ran the same gimmick during a period in summer. My impression: low quality farmed caviar, which has an off-taste that only becomes worse at high altitude.

    I would not recommend flying Swiss F just for this.

    Disclaimer: I find airline food revolting and don’t dine on board except in rare cases.

  21. Who cares? Its such a gimmick. Such a first world story!!!

    I don’t know why you are giving Swiss such publicity after they treated you like shit a little while back.

  22. Remember: Swiss cheats people and kick off passengers with paid tickets for no reason. The service sucks, too.

  23. Ah, yes, the “I didn’t get what I didn’t ‘really paid’ for” complaint department pipes up again yet has only itself to blame as these exact same folks wanted the DOT to rake airlines over the coals for obvious mistake fares ($4 to HKG in F anyone) and now the DOT lets even the borderline mistake fares slide. Chickens have come home to roust!

    Next time don’t act like such entitled pigs on high horses every time a click goes your way (you think) and maybe the agency would be there when it actually should be for the real good faith mistake purchases. But no more; you ruined it for good.

  24. I like how people keep referring to the Aeroplan debacle as paid tickets. You where so happy to fly Swiss F and now you hate them because you won’t be Flying with them…

  25. Big deal, $50 worth if caviar for an $8000 ticket.

    Swiss is the most condescending airline to ever exist.

  26. I visited (only 50 invited HON) this week the new First / Hon Lounge at ZRH airport. Beautiful place, food connect was interesting to.

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