Hawaiian Airlines Innovates With Tasting Menu Concept

HONOLULU, May 1, 2007 /PRNewswire via COMTEX News Network/ -- Hawaiian Airlines is taking in-flight dining to new heights with the airline industry's first "tasting menu" for its First Class customers.

Modeled after the popular dining style found in high-end restaurants, Hawaiian's onboard tasting menu lets customers create their own meal by pairing choices from a range of sumptuous entrees designed in collaboration with award-winning Hawaii Regional Cuisine Chef Beverly Gannon.

Mark Dunkerley, Hawaiian's president and CEO, commented, "People want greater control over their travel experience. That's why we're giving customers more choices in every aspect of their travel on Hawaiian, from booking online to checking in for flights, and now with their dining in First Class."

Dunkerley added, "We were already getting rave reviews for Bev Gannon's onboard artistry. Our new tasting menu will set us further apart from the rest of the industry. With other carriers resorting to selling in-flight meals or eliminating them altogether, we saw this as an opportunity to further distinguish Hawaiian's quality of service."

For lunch and dinner, First Class customers select three of five entrees to create their meal. Twenty entrees have been designed for the tasting menu and will be used in different groupings systemwide to ensure constant variety, even for Hawaiian's most frequent customers.

Hawaiian is complementing its new tasting menu with a refreshing Pomegranate Passion beverage created exclusively for the airline, along with mochi ice cream for dessert.

For breakfast, First Class travelers will select two of three entrees and also receive a fresh plate of assorted fruits.

One of each entree is prepared for every First Class customer on every flight, ensuring that all customers will receive their first choice of three entrees. The extra food provisions for each flight will allow Hawaiian's flight crew to also enjoy the entrees for their meal.

Hawaiian has also introduced new noise-canceling headsets in First Class to further enhance the quality and value of its premium product.

Chef Gannon, Hawaiian's executive chef and owner of two acclaimed Maui restaurants, Hali'imaile General Store and Joe's, gives Hawaiian's new menu a unique flair inspired by the islands, with entrees like Hawaiian Crab Cake Tantalizing "Taste of the Island" with a Zesty Pineapple Salsa, Rock Shrimp and Lemon Pepper Ravioli with Creamy Sun Dried Tomato-Basil Sauce and Tri-Pepper Garni, and Chicken Tandoori served with a tangy Makhani Sauce and Sultana Basmati Rice Pilaf.

"For years, Hawaiian has been raising the standard for in-flight dining to a quality people expect when going to a restaurant," said Chef Gannon. "Our new tasting menu gives travelers the flexibility to tailor their First Class dining to their own tastes and lifestyle choices. It makes their travel experience that much more enjoyable."

Airline caterer Gate Gourmet developed the tasting menu concept for Hawaiian and is working closely with Chef Gannon and Hawaiian's in-flight department on the catering and presentation of the new service.

Keith McGrath, Gate Gourmet's vice president of customer services, said, "Hawaiian wanted to offer a truly unique and special meal for its First Class customers and we're proud to have created a collaborative solution that meets their needs."

Hawaiian introduced the new tasting menu March 1st on its San Francisco-Honolulu route and has been phasing the service into its eight other West Coast routes, as well as those serving Sydney, American Samoa and Tahiti. The new service will be offered systemwide in May.

For Coach Class passengers, Hawaiian continues to offer complimentary meal service, also designed by Chef Gannon, with a choice of three entrees on all transpacific flights.

About Hawaiian Airlines

Hawaiian is the nation's top-ranked airline for service in the 2007 Airline Quality Ratings. Hawaiian also led America's carriers in on-time performance for 2004, 2005 and 2006, including a record 36 consecutive months from November 2003 to October 2006, and in fewest misplaced bags for 2005 and 2006 (as reported by the U.S. Department of Transportation). Consumer surveys by Conde Nast Traveler, Travel + Leisure, and Zagat all rank Hawaiian as the top domestic airline serving Hawaii.

Now in its 78th year of continuous service in Hawaii, Hawaiian is the state's biggest and longest-serving airline, as well as the second largest provider of passenger air service between the U.S. mainland and Hawaii. Hawaiian offers nonstop service to Hawaii from more U.S. gateway cities than any other airline (nine), as well as service to Australia, American Samoa and Tahiti. Hawaiian also provides approximately 100 daily jet flights among the Hawaiian Islands.

Hawaiian Airlines, Inc. is a subsidiary of Hawaiian Holdings, Inc. (Amex and PCX: HA). Additional information is available at HawaiianAirlines.com.

SOURCE Hawaiian Airlines

Keoni Wagner of Hawaiian Airlines, +1-808-838-6778,