Emirates First Class Culinary Journey – Dubai (DXB) to Colombo (CMB)

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the seats in a plane

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Emirates First Class Culinary Journey – Introduction

On my recent journey from Toronto to Colombo, I had the pleasure of experiencing an aspirational bucket list item, the Emirates First Class from Dubai to Columbo. I booked this flight as part of my journey from Toronto (YYZ) to Colombo (CMB) for just 145,000 Aeroplan points. This was a mixed cabin booking, as the first leg of the trip from YYZ-DXB (Dubai) was in economy, while the second leg from DXB-CMB was in Emirates First Class. This also gave me access to the Emirates First Class Lounge in Dubai. The 3hr 50-minute flight from DXB to CMB was on the Boeing 777, which was not equipped for the ‘Shower in the Sky’ experience. Despite that, it was a truly memorable experience with Dom Perignon Champagne, caviar and some high-end spirits that retail for over $5,000. Plus, being the only one in First class cabin for the flight, I had the whole crew to myself, and Emirates knows how to spoil their sole First-Class passenger. One of the perks of the flight was access to the First-Class lounge in Gate B in Terminal 1 at DXB Airport. Spoiler alert: while the food and lounge were impressive, the service was subpar.

Emirates First Class Lounge – Fine Dining Experience

The Emirates First-Class Lounge in Gate B is a haven of luxury. Upon entering, I was greeted by a tranquil setting dominated by a mesmerizing water fountain display, surrounded by comfortable leather couches.

Emirates First Class

Emirates First Class Lounge – Main Entrance

Emirates First Class

Tranquil water feature in the lounge

a room with couches and tables

Leather couch seating

a room with black leather couches and tables

More seating options

A little further, there was a well-stocked mini bar offering rejuvenating mocktails designed to combat jet lag, relieve stress, and boost energy. Additionally, there were fruit and yogurt pairings, providing a delightful, healthy treat.

a display of different drinks on a counter

Fruits, juices, and healthy treats

The lounge extends into a corridor leading to washrooms and, eventually, the grand dining hall. The spacious and regal dining area provides passengers with a la carte and buffet options. The bar boasts a selection of high-end spirits, including Chivas 18, Royal Salute 21, and Moet Champagne.

Emirates First Class Lounge Dubai

Grand Dining Hall

Emirates First Class Lounge Dubai

Dining Hall – Seating options

a group of bottles of alcohol on a counter

Emirates First Class – Liquor and Wine options

a buffet table with food on it

Buffet Options – Salads and Starters

a buffet with different types of cheeses

Buffet Options – Cheese and Fruits

a display of food on a shelf

Buffet Options – Sliders and Sandwiches

a display of pastries on a counter

Buffet options – Desserts

a coffee machine with a box of tea in it

Buffet options – Coffee and Tea selection

While incredibly impressed with the fine food options in the buffet section, I chose to indulge in the a-la-carte fine dining experience in the lounge. The exclusive seating area and the table presentation was sport on, and imbibed fine dining etiquette.

a table with plates and a rose on it

Emirates First Class – a la carte dining

a table with a plate and silverware

A la carte dining – Table setup

My culinary journey in the lounge started with the Nankin Soba Ramen appetizer — a bowl bursting with flavours from a rich chicken and fish broth, ajitsuke tamago, katsu chicken, and other ingredients, all beautifully complemented by nankin soba ramen noodles. My main course was the succulent Waygu beef tenderloin, although there were minor hiccups with the accompaniments. For dessert, I was spoiled for choice, ultimately settling on the decadent Manjari 64% dark chocolate.

Emirates First Class

Ramen for starters

Emirates First Class Dining

Main Course – Wagyu Beef Tenderloin

Emirates First Class Dining

Dessert – Manjari 64% Dark Chocolate

However, the experience wasn’t without its flaws. While the initial service was impeccable, the attentiveness waned as the meal progressed. It was somewhat challenging to catch the attention of a server post-meal. Additionally, contrary to the convenience found in most first-class lounges, the lounge in Gate B did not provide direct access to the gates, necessitating a 10-minute walk to board my flight.

Dubai’s Emirates First Class Lounge offers world-class amenities and a fine dining experience. While there is room for improvement in service consistency, the lounge remains a must-visit for travellers seeking an elevated airport experience.

Emirates First Class B777 – a Foodies journey

Reminder that this 3hr 50-minute flight from DXB to CMB was on the Boeing 777, which was not equipped for the ‘Shower in the Sky’ experience. However, the cabin was stunning, and the culinary journey was a gastronomic affair that exceeded all expectations.

the seats in a plane

Boeing 777 – Emirates First Class Cabin

a seat and a table in a plane

EK First Class Seat

Emirates First Class Suite

Ek First Class Suite

a person's legs in a chair with a television

A First Class Stretch

bottles of soda and other beverages in a cooler

EK First Class Suite – Mini bar

a basket of food and a flower

EK First Class Snack Basket


a menu open on a table

EK First Class Menu – Drink Selection

a menu open on a table

EK First Class Menu – Spirits

Emirates First Class Menu

EK First Class Menu – Food Selection

Even after indulging in three courses at the First Class Lounge, my culinary adventure was far from over. The flight commenced on a lavish note, with a bottomless glass of the iconic Dom Perignon, setting the stage for the following exquisite courses.

a glass of champagne next to a bottle of food

Champagne – Dom Perignon Vintage 2013

My palate was first teased with an amuse-bouche of caviar, complemented perfectly by its traditional

a table with food on it

EK First Class – Caviar Service

I was served cumin jumbo prawns paired beautifully with a fresh papaya salad and a tangy tamarind dressing for the appetizer. The marriage of the earthy spice from the prawns with the sweet papaya was a harmonious blend, a testament to the chef’s prowess.

a plate of food on a table

Papaya Salad with Jumbo Prawns

The main course was a delectable journey to Sri Lanka with the Chicken Biryani. This dish’s chicken marinated in aromatic spices was slow-cooked with rice and generously garnished with fried cashew nuts, onions, and raisins. Although tempted by another Sri Lankan delicacy, the Devilled potatoes, I found the biryani impeccably seasoned with a generous serving of chicken.

a plate of rice and meat

Main Course – Chicken Biryani

Dessert was a nostalgic treat: the Wattalapam. This Sri Lankan coconut custard pudding, with subtle notes of cardamom, served alongside Kithil treacle (palm tree molasses), transported me back home. Its authenticity was impeccable, rivalling the traditional preparations I so adore.

a plate of food on a table

Dessert – Wattalampam


Beyond the meal, what truly set the experience apart was the attention to detail by the cabin crew. They noticed my interest in the spirits menu and orchestrated a custom whiskey/cognac pairing exclusively for me. The spirits showcased were nothing short of elite, from the luxurious Hennessy Paradis and Tesseron Cognac Lot 29 XO Exception to the esteemed Dalmore King Alexander III Single Malt. Even as I requested moderation in the pour, the crew’s enthusiasm was evident as they generously showcased the best in their collection.

a group of glasses of alcohol on a table

EK First Class – Whiskey Flight

a bottle of wine next to a glass of wine

Dessert Port Wine

Emirates First Class Culinary Journey – Takeaway

For a short 4-hour flight I was impressed with the cabin experience despite the absence of an amenity kit or pyjamas . While a minor weather-induced delay marred the journey, the exceptional service of the First Class crew more than compensated. They promptly initiated my whiskey/cognac tasting, ensuring my experience remained unhindered. My maiden Emirates First Class flight was a symphony of flavours, impeccable service, and unparalleled luxury.

If you enjoyed this report, you can check-out my other culinary adventures here. Happy travels!


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