Tag Archives: train

East coast train service

At Diet Chef we used to travel quite a lot by train from Edinburgh to London. That was in the good old days when GNER ran the service.

It was quite relaxing after a full day of meetings to get on the 18:00 from Kings Cross to Edinburgh and enjoy dinner and a glass of wine.

The service was sometimes a little regimented and we were excluded from sitting down on numerous occasions by the restaurant “monitor” (remind me of school dinners) but I still reminisce about these train journeys.

Fast forward a few years and the UK government are using the same staff to run the new service. First Class restaurant car and chefs have disappeared and complimentary menus have been introduced* (*subject to certain restrictions, conditions apply, the likelihood of having food is very likely to go down but not up).

The first issue with this customers who tend to travel first class are not price sensitive and adding a meal to there costs in comparison to the train fare is no major issue. So making everything complimentary seems to be subtext to reduce the quality of the service.

Today I am travelling from York to Edinburgh at lunchtime, here is an example.

Menu R4

Chicken and stuffing
or
egg and roasted tomato sandwiches

All served with hand cooked crisps

-o-

Fish pie with white wine and watercress sauce
Served with fries

Or
Jacket potato and classic ratatouille
Garnished with mixed leaf salad and balsamic dressing

-o-

Dorothy Wordsworth house Madeira & caraway seed cake

-o-

A selection of fruit One apple

So over 50% of the menu was off from York, surely availability is known and demand planning can be done. If not why bother offering it.

www.eastcoast.com what’s your thoughts?

UPDATE: Mark Terry, head of on board catering at East Coast emailed to say that they had lost their logistics provider 4 weeks ago to administration. This should be resolved soon.