United Airlines And The Trotter Project Team Up To Enhance In-Flight Dining Experience
Members of United Airlines’ team of chefs join alumni of Chef Charlie Trotter’s Chicago restaurant
United Airlines and The Trotter Project are joining together to boost travelers’ in-flight dining experience, with alumni chefs of Charlie Trotter’s legendary Chicago restaurant and their culinary peers working with the airline to design new premium-cabin and United Economy meals.
United will also be the official airline of The Trotter Project, a nonprofit organization committed to continuing Chef Trotter’s legacy through mentoring and internship programs for youth interested in the culinary arts.
“Our partnership with The Trotter Project is an excellent addition to the investment we are making in products and services for our customers, from booking until they reach their final destinations,” said Sandra Pineau-Boddison, United’s senior vice president of customers. “By pairing our team of chefs with those affiliated with The Trotter Project, we will continue to offer our customers innovative dining options.”
“Our relationship with United is a natural fit, given Chef Charlie Trotter's history as one of its celebrity chefs,” said Derrek Hull, executive director of The Trotter Project. “Through this exciting, new partnership, his alumni and culinary supporters will continue that spirit of service and excellence. We look forward to further elevating the in-flight dining experience for United’s customers and providing more opportunities to the next generation of great culinary talent.”
United and The Trotter Project hosted their first menu-development workshop in March, with United’s team of chefs joining the following Trotter alumni and culinary supporters of the organization:
• Richie Farina, former executive chef at Chicago’s Michelin-starred Moto Restaurant and contestant on reality show “Top Chef”;
• Della Gossett of Spago Beverly Hills;
• David LeFevre of Manhattan Beach Post and Fishing with Dynamite restaurants, in Manhattan Beach, California;
• Mitchell Nordby, sous chef at Parallel 37 at The Ritz Carlton, San Francisco;
• Christian Ramos of Virginia’s, a new restaurant in New York City’s East Village neighborhood, and formerly of New York’s Per Se restaurant;
• Priscila Satkoff of Chicago’s Salpicόn restaurant and a Chicago Chefs Hall of Fame inductee;
• Michael Taus, vice president of The Trotter Project and owner of Chicago restaurant Taus Authentic; and
• Guillermo Tellez-Cruz, Charlie Trotter’s chef de cuisine and executive chef at Flora’s Field Kitchen in Los Cabos, Mexico.
During the workshop, the chefs developed new menu ideas for United BusinessFirst customers on the airline’s p.s. Premium Service and for United’s economy-cabin Choice Menu Bistro on Board. Customers may get a taste of the new meals in the coming months.
United and Trotter-affiliated chefs plan to team up again later this year, as they continue to redesign customers’ onboard culinary experience.
The new collaboration between the airline and the nonprofit organization will receive advertising support from Condé Nast Traveler, the official media partner of The Trotter Project. Condé Nast Traveler is also producing a short film documenting the partnership from kitchen to cabin, which customers will be able to view on United flights worldwide.
United’s Airport and In-flight Investments
United’s partnership with The Trotter Project furthers the airline’s commitment to the travel experience, with improvements this year to food and beverage service in-flight and in airport clubs. United has:
• Introduced delicious new premium-cabin meals and snacks on flights within North America, and expanded premium-cabin meal service to include flights of at least 800 miles;
• Replaced snack boxes with freshly prepared entrées served on chinaware, in premium cabins on United Express regional-jet service of at least 800 miles; and
• Debuted an all-new complimentary food menu for United Clubs worldwide, with customers currently enjoying the new fresh and healthy options at locations in Chicago, Houston, New York/Newark and Denver, and expanding the menu to other locations this year.
Also, beginning June 1, the airline will offer significantly upgraded food and beverage service – including multi-course meals, complimentary beer and wine and a new option to purchase premium snacks – for customers in United Economy on many long-haul international flights.