Travelling has always been my passion and that spirit did not stop me from planning a trip to Europe this May. I started planning my itinerary way back in March, hoping to grab the best redemption deals while getting to experience different airlines’ business class services.
I was fortunate enough to redeem a Hotel + Air packages- a 5-nights stay certificate plus 132,000 miles with United Airlines MileagePlus plan (You will receive 10% more miles if you choose MileagePlus) from the Marriott Rewards Programme. In addition, I also managed to chalk up a sizable amount of 85,000 miles with Singapore Airlines Krisflyer Programme the never-ending effort to swipe my credit cards to earn more miles. With quite a substantial number of miles on hand, I was then able to have more choices in choosing other carriers apart from my home-based airline – Singapore Airlines (SQ). It also gave me an opportunity to compare this country home-based carrier vis-à-vis other Star Alliance carriers. To ensure a fair comparison with the world-renowned Singapore Airlines, my choices were further limited to the following 3 5-Stars Asian Carriers- ANA, EVA Air and Asiana Airlines. After much research and consideration, I decided to redeem my miles with EVA Air as one of the 2 legs in this Europe Trip.
Software – Meals
Let the battle of the best gourmet begin!!!
EVA Air Royal Laurel Class Menu
Singapore Airlines Business Class Menu
Left) EVA Air-Tomato Pimento Shrimp Salsa and Ham Black Forest Roll with bread
Right) Singapore Airlines- Chicken Satay
Both Canapés were great. EVA Air bite size bread with fillings kiced off with a great start. But Satay being one of Singapore national dish definitely won this handsdown
Above) EVA Air-Vegetable Mushroom Soup with mixed vegetables
Below) Singapore Airlines- Prawns on Nicoise Salad
Let’s start with the salad by Singapore Airlines. To be honest, I’m not a big fan of salad unless it’s romaine lettuces. On appearance, the Nicoise Salad didn’t look appetizing enough for me, so was the taste. I eventually took all the prawns and left the rest on the plate.
The Vegetable Mushroom Soup from EVA AIR was indeed something worth remembering, especially when you can get your body warm with a pipping hot soup that was probably boiled for hours. The soup taste was herbal but light for the stomach. I simply felt the warmth by EVA Air right from this bowl of soup.
Overall, EVA Air’s appetizer got the upper hand.
Round 3-Main Course
Left ) EVA Air- Golden Fried Lobster with Rice and Vegetables (Online Order)
Right) Singapore Airlines- Coq au Vin’ style Chicken Supreme with Endive Gratin (Book the Cook)
To ensure that both of my flights were truly a memorable one, I’ve purportly chose the main course that are only available when order online. EVA Air’s Golden Fried Lobster was remarkable. I could tell the lobster was fresh since I could scoop off the entire lobster meat easily off from the shell. I could appreciate the chewy and bouncy meat each time I chew it and when coupled with the rice and vegetable, it was simply a perfect combination. For Singapore Airlines, I chose the ‘Book the Cook’ option- Coq au Vin’ style Chicken Supreme with Endive Gratin. This dish was specially created by the famous michelin 3-stars chef- George Blanc. The pan-roasted chicken meat was tender and juicy and it tasted extremely great together with the red wine sauce that comes with it.
Since both main courses were both great, I’ve decided that it was a draw between both airlines. Both main course were truly remarkable.
Above)EVA Air-Fresh Fruit
Below) Singapore Airlines-Tiramisu, Haagen-Dazs Vanilla Ice Cream, Cheese and Biscuits
I was quite surprised that despite a 10 hour flight from BKK-VIE, EVA Air did not really serve any dessert except for a small platter of fruits. Singapore Airlines on the other hand provided a wide range of desserts including Tiramisu, Ice Cream, chocolates and cheese as well. Needless to say, Singapore Airlines dessert was way better.
Round 5-Delectables and Snacks
Above) EVA Air-Instant Noodles, Steam Taro Cakes with Soya Paste, Snacks and Biscuits
Below) Singapore Airlines-Chicken Noodles, Seafood Noodles, Snacks and Biscuits
I just realised a common observation while on board. I tend to have glass of Riesling as paring for my first round of delectables, and then getting a cup of hot TWG 1837 black tea. While Singapore Airlines noodles have more ingredients such as chicken meat and prawn compared to EVA Air, the overall taste of EVA Air’s instant noodles is way better than those from Singapore Airlines. On that note, I tend to prefer EVA Air’s delectables compared to Singapore Airlines.
Above) EVA Air-Taiwanese Porridge with minced pork pan fried egg
Below) Singapore Airlines- Cheese Chive Omelette with veal sausages, and vegetables
Software – Meals Verdict: Both airlines breakfast variety were wide spread. A breakfast meal before landing definitely keeps you awake. Based on the content and also taste, I tend to prefer the Taiwanese porridge.
Software – Wine/Champagne
EVA Air Royal Laurel Class Wine Menu
Singapore Airlines Business Class Wine Menu
I prefer both white wines and champagne to hard liquors. Hence, I will use both white wines and champagnes to compare.
Left) EVA Air- Veuve Clicquot La Grande Dame 2006
Right) Singapore Airlines- Charles Heidsieck Brut Reserve
I have to say EVA was overly generous when it comes to alcoholic beverages. Even though I was on a business class (instead of first), EVA offered Veuve Clicquot La Grande Dame 2006 onboard this flight! The champagne has a crisp and fresh feeling with a tinge of sweetness and it was smooth down my throat! As for Singapore Airlines’s Charles Heidsieck Brut Reserves, it had a citrusy and fruity tastes. However, comparing both champagne, EVA Air’s Veuve Clicquot La Grande Dame 2006 clearly won! By the way, you can taste the Charles Heidsieck Brut Reserve champagne in the Silverkris Lounge in Singapoore.
Round 2- Riesling
Left) EVA Air- Balthasar Ress Riesling Kabinett, Rheingau, 2014
Right) Singapore Airlines- Selbach Riesling Kabinett, Feinherb, 2014
Speaking of white wine, my favourite is none other than Riesling, simply because Riesling tends to be sweeter than other types of white wines. EVA’s Balthasar Ress Riesling Kabinett, Rheingau, 2014 happens to be one of my favourites! A sip of this wine translated to an instant sweetness throughout my mouth, next was a fruity scent coupled with honey taster swirling throughout my mouth while it slipped down my throat! One word- Awesome! Singapore Airlines used to offer the Balthasar Riesling but has switched to offer Selbach Riesling Kabinett, Feinherb, 2014. The wine is relatively dry and heavy, with the duration of sweetness shorter compared to that offered by EVA. I had to say I was a little disappointed.
Software – Wine/Champagne – EVA’s Wines generally tasted better compared to Singapore Airlines
Software: Overall Service
There is no doubt that EVA Air provides an immaculate 5 stars service onboard; the overall flight experience simply made me felt at ease. The cabin crew were particularly attentive even to the finest small details. They will pay attention to the guests’ preference when dining. The service was simply too good that I had write a compliment letter while enjoying a cup of TWG 1837 black tea.
As for Singapore Airlines, that flight service was simply a disappointment. Unlike many positive reviews out there, I felt that the cabin crew gave a vibe of ‘I’m professional but I cannot be bothered with you’ sort of attitude. Throughout the entire trip, the flight attendants were cold and hardly smile. I was quite puzzled when a flight attendant simply ignored the service light only to apologize when she found out. What’s more, what shocked me was when a cabin crew came up in black face to ask me “Are you done?”, even I returned the tray of the finished instant noodle bowl, the air steward took it back without any expression or simple “Thank you” gesture. In addition, before the flight, the cabin crew made a mistake by saying that my ‘Book the Cook’ dish was not confirmed, only to return with confirmation after I asserted that. Sadly, the overall great service was rendered by a flight attendant from Indonesia who was cordial compared to the other Singaporean crew members with a strong Singapore accent.
That’s why I would cherish EVA Air’s great service.
Conclusion：In conclusion, Singapore Airlines’s Hardware tends to be better than EVA Air Royal Laurel Class. But the latter’s software is more superior compared to Singapore Airlines. I believe both airlines lived up to the 5 stars branding and hope it provides a comparison of which business class flight suits better for you.