Photo: OTG Management
Airline food is dead. Long live airport food, which is taking off so fast you wonder if the dining scene at LAX and O'Hare will soon resemble Vegas without the slot machines. Total hype? Sure, but today does mark a milestone with the opening of a new kind of "restaurant" at JFK's two Delta terminals.
Some 200 iPads have been mounted at coffee shop-style booths right by the gates, where passengers can now grab a seat and order a meal, checking stock quotes and playing games as they wait for food to be delivered. What kind of food? Maybe a Cobb salad or spinach quiche at Croque Madame (Gates 21 and 22), from Andrew Carmellini, the chef at Manhattan's downtown hotspot, Locanda Verde, or a panini from Bar Brace (Gate 15), from Jason Denton of New York's 'Inoteca and Lupa.
Next up: Crust, at Delta's LaGuardia terminal, where Jim Lahey, of Soho's Sullivan Street Bakery, will lend his baking prowess to pizza.) Big-name chefs, like Wolfgang Puck and Todd English, have had restaurant franchises at airports for some time now, but this whole park-me-by-the gate-and-hand-me-an-iPad expansion is a step in a new direction. And if you miss having a live server taking your order, you can always stare soulfully into your Apple screen and mumble, "you must be iPaddy, and you'll be my waiter today."