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Airport food

Do you have a favourite foodie airport anywhere in the world? If so, please share. I was surprised at the options in Dusseldorf Airport.

I had a six hour lay-over in Dusseldorf last week and enjoyed the selection of good foods available at the airport. I printed off all the options from the airport website and used the time well, in true Chowhound form! lol!
For breakfast I went with Kamps, fresh baked goods, great sandwiches and excellent coffees. Such a selection it was tough to decide. For a great spot to people watch and enjoy fabulous tea and coffee, try Red Baron for it's comfort, service, style and fab menu, pricey but worth it. It made that long wait a lot more comfortable to hang at Red Baron. For a healthy preboarding boost, I had a great big salad at Leonardo for E6.50, fresh selections from seafood to pasta and very well priced.
We walked by all the food establishments and felt that we had made the best choices for quality and price.

I'll be going through Schiphol airport soon, so any recs would be appreciated.

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  1. The airport in Copenhagen, Denmark has some of the best pastries (cheese and fruit danish, of course) and chocolate frosted donuts (think Entenmanns in heaven) in the world. I haven't been there in years, but passed through several times per year during the '80s.

    1. my best ever airport meal memory is chicago; there used to be a mexican place under one of the 5 star hotels (hilton?) and my dad took us there once when we had a few hours to wait for a connecting flight.
      it stands out in my memory to this day - not so much the food, but the whole experience of going underground to a place for a proper meal and still being inside an airport.
      era 1989...

      4 Replies
      1. re: kmh

        O'Hare's food, while not head and shoulders above anywhere else's, wins big for being reasonably priced. I remember Midway being pretty decent, and there's a fantastic barbecue place in the Austin airport. MSP also has a number of good places, and if chains are OK with you (or you're travelling with people who need the security of a chain place) then Sacramento is a good place.

        Hong Kong's new airport also has a number of good selections, and they guarantee that prices in the airport will not be higher than they are in Central, so there's no fear of a ripoff, despite the fact that the airport is in the butt end of Lantau Island which contains a fishing village, a large multinational theme park, and the airport -- and that's it. Zurich was OK but it seemed cavernous -- and, thanks to our wonderful US government, you have to make sure to eat, buy your souvenirs, etc., BEFORE you go through the additional security for US flights, and you can't buy liquid in the airport and bring it through the US-owned security (which really sucks in Hong Kong, where there are several excellent tea shops that are happy to brew you a pot to go right in the terminal).

        Worst airport for eating -- bar none -- has to be Moscow Sheremetyevo (and SVO-1 is worse than SVO-2), closely followed by Newark. I was charged $1 for tea and $1 for a biscuit at SVO-1 in an era where a cup of tea at any kiosk in the city was the equivalent of two tenths of a US cent. A friend recently went through there and said it's not $1 anymore, it's $5, and it's not any different than it was in 1992.

        1. re: Das Ubergeek

          I have a special (terrifying) corner of my mind reserved for the Moscow airport... I was there at the tail end of the soviet era, and it looked just like the worst scenario one could imagine- and it was sooo dark, you could barely tell what you were eating, anyway. Then again, Laguardia terminals can be pretty terrifying for a hungry person, too.

          1. re: Das Ubergeek

            Barbecue at Austin was a welcome surprise.
            I live in Sacramento and I agree with you there too. It's reliable in a security blanket kind of way.

            1. re: Muncheroo

              Ha! Who knew? I go through Sacramento about 5 times a year. Have never eaten there. I'll check it out next time. (I'm usually in the Brighton shop across from the food court)

        2. Brasserie Flo at CDG, a little coffee shop in the old Don Muang Airport that had the best garlic soup, Legal Seafood at Logan.

          1. I had the Amsterdam speciality - bitterballen - at Schiphol last time I went through. It was clearly not the best bitterballen I've ever had, in fact it was kinda nasty. The best bet was the adorable 'small bier' at the bar. The whole meal was just a 'damn I hate to leave so I'm going to eat this one last time' experience.

            If you do find tasty food at Schipol, please do report back! I have family there and fly in and out of Schipol quite often.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Feastradio

              when your at Schiphol, don't forget to stop at the cheesestand! for all the lovely cheeses! there's also upstairs sort of a foodcourt. they have all different kind of foods there if I remember correctly... from stirfry to pizza to a bakery. I always fly to early from amsterdam to eat anything besides a chocolate croissant at that time,haha

              1. re: mariekeac

                I always get like 4 Kilos of Organic Gouda by concourse E in their cheese stand, and I got some cute blue cow salt and pepper shakers for my mom, and ceramic Klompens

                I love Schipol, It only lacks a stripper club with buffallo wings

                (wasn't so keen on their sushi bar

            2. The hotdog carts at ORD are the only thing that stand out as being the equal of what you can get off airport anywhere I've ever been. Then again that's not too difficult to do.

              Given that most airports have sold their culinary soul to Host/Marriott or whatever the current incarnation is I've stopped looking for decent food. I once had an interesting conversation with a Noah's regional manager about how difficult it was to keep up the quality and kosher standards at SFO due to the contract and work rules imposed by Host. The employees didn't like working there because of the kosher rules and would leave as soon as they were trained. Noah's had no control over the workforce.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Scrapironchef

                Two points:

                1) The food at Chicago-Midway blows away anything that is available at O'Hare. When they redid the airport in 2002, they brought in a lot of local restaurants - Manny's, Harry Carey's, Pegasus, Lalos, Millers Pub, etc., and avoided a lot of the usual chains in the restaurant.

                What I like particularly, is the availability of a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables and other healthy options at the various restaurants.

                Do realize that much of the food in MOST restaurants has to be produced off-site at a commissary due to security concerns. (Ever run a kitchen with NO knives?)

                2) Host/Marriott signs the union contracts, don't they? They agree to the rules.

                It is very difficult to find employees who know, understand, and will follow all the kosher rules in a union environment as most work rules allow bumping between positions based on seniority, rather than skill or knowledge.

                A vendor running a kosher operation is probably better to produce all of the food off-site where they have better control over the labor.