Finnair has launched an exclusive signature cocktail for customers in all cabins as part of its enhanced long-haul in-flight offering. Rose Dykins reports
Part of the airline’s new elevated long-haul in-flight product, the Northern Blush cocktail pays tribute to the magical quality of Finnish sunsets, with its vivid red hue, and traditional Nordic flavours.
Mikropolis spent five months researching and testing to develop the new cocktail, which is linked to Nordic nature and landscapes. Comprising lingonberry, a splash of gin, and a dash of orange peel mixed together, Northern Blush’s flavour captures the freshness of Finland’s forests thanks to notes of citrus and a hint of juniper berries.
Mikropolis has committed to delivering more than 800,000 drinks to Finnair’s customers. The Danish company has developed a modern brewing technique that allows it to pour cocktails and drinks into cans and kegs without compromising on taste or quality.
Served with ice and a slice of lemon, Northern Blush comes pre-mixed in a can. The new cocktail is free for economy passengers during the first meal service and can be bought for €8 per drink during the rest of the flight.
Passengers at Finnair’s Helsinki lounges were able sample to the new cocktail on the ground for two days after its launch, before it became exclusively available in the air.
Lauri Ahonen, Finnair’s kitchen concept and category manager, says: “Cocktails are a growing trend and have become a part of Finnair’s in-flight dining experience. With Mikropolis, we found a partner who could understand our sustainability goals and work with Nordic ingredients to produce on a large scale. Quality is at the core of our values, and with this collaboration we are able to offer an interesting and consistent cocktail selection to our customers onboard,”
Morten Brunn, researcher and developer for Mikropolis, says: “Our aim was to offer Finnair customers a high-quality, ready-made premium drink-mix. We very quickly came up with the theme of a light, lush, sparkling lingonberry cocktail reminiscent of a Cosmopolitan. Once we were able to source lingonberries of Finnish origin, we were sure that the plan would go down a treat.”
Finnair’s enhanced long-haul in-flight experience includes a new menu and service concept to complement its new business class and premium economy cabins, and its revamped economy cabin. In addition, to maximise passengers’ sleep time during the flight, Finnair’s new concept menu also offers a swifter service option.
Long-haul business class customers can now choose from up to six main dishes, as well as smaller bistro-style dishes, while in premium economy, there is more of a casual dining set-up. The new menus – designed by Finnair Kitchen chefs – focus on offering pure, fresh flavours, drawing upon the airline’s Nordic heritage.
They also include the carrier’s refreshed drinks selection, featuring Finnish producers with whisky from Kyrö, gin from Helsinki Distillery and Valamo XO dessert wine. Business class customers will also be able to enjoy Mikropolis’s Negroni.
Finnair’s new menu design was inspired by the recently launched Iittala Kuulas dining collection, which was created exclusively for Finnair by contemporary designer Harri Koskinen. The Iittala Kuulas tableware collection includes plates, bowls, cups, tumblers, wine glasses and cutlery, and will now be used in Finnair’s long-haul and short-haul business class cabins, and its new premium economy cabin.
Sustainability was the driver behind the design of Finnair’s new dining concept. Single-use items and plastics have been significantly reduced, with more sustainable options included or others being removed completely – including starter and salad cups, and salt and pepper packages.
To reduce food waste, Finnair is also encouraging business lass customers to pre-order their main course through its online Manage Booking service, to avoid the unnecessary loading of extra dishes on board.