Did American Permanently do Away with First Class Champagne?


FlyerTalkers are talking about a recent refresh on the menu which replaces the traditional and customary champagne offering with a sparkling wine – which some flyers find less than refreshing.


“People Aren’t Flying American Airlines for Their Wine/Liquor list”

The change was first noticed on Thursday, August 3, 2023, when FlyerTalker Red Raider LV posted a picture of the wine menu for a flight between John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) and Adolfo Suárez Madrid–Barajas Airport (MAD). The featured “bubbles” offering was a Ferrari Brut from Trentino, Italy, instead of champagne, which comes from the Champagne region of France.


Other FlyerTalkers immediately started chiming in with their own responses. FlyerTalker thelark notes that they had the same options when traveling from the carrier’s home hub of Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) to London Heathrow Airport (LHR).


“It’s all honestly undrinkable swill,” writes thelark. “I stuck to Glenlivet.”


HaleiwaFlyer notes that the change may be a reflection of typical American flyers. “People aren’t flying American Airlines for their wine/liquor list. If it’s an important part of [the Business and First Class] experience for a flyer another airline will be chosen,” they write. “[American] targets US demographic consumers won’t really care. The people who do care will be flying foreign carriers in a heartbeat.”


In a statement to FlyerTalk, an American Airlines spokesperson says: “Wines considered for the American Airlines wine program are carefully reviewed by a team of wine experts and highly regarded James Beard Foundation wine consultant Julia Coney.”


Defending the choice of Ferrari Brut, the spokesperson says: “Ferrari Brut is made with 100% premium organic Chardonnay grapes, or Blanc de Blancs, and is produced in the classic method, or metodo classico. Ferrari Brut has been twice recognized as the top sparkling wine at The Champagne and Sparkling Wine Championships, an annual competition that shows the top sparkling producers in the world, including top Champagne houses.”


While there is some outrage, others are accepting of the change. FlyerTalker GaryZ writes: “Wine Spectator gives it a 90 rating which classifies it as “outstanding.” I had some last week from MAD-DFW and found it perfectly fine.”


Yet some say they will change their flying habits due to the switch. Altaflyer declares: “Not that I was looking to use AA to fly anywhere but now they go on the definite no fly list for International Business”


American says they look forward “to hearing our customers’ thoughts on the accompaniment to their inflight experience, and to continuing to evolve our inflight dining experiences based on customer feedback.”


Will the sparkling wine change make change your flight options? Share your thoughts on the FlyerTalk Forums.

Source: frugal travel guy

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.