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How is that First Class Meal Created?

How is that First Class Meal Created?


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Ever wanted to know how an airline goes about the mammoth task of creating a first class inflight meal? During a recent trip to Zurich we had the chance to take a behind the scenes look at how first and business class meals are created by the Swiss airline and their catering partner Gate Gourmet. No trip to an airline caterer is complete without a taste testing session and it’s our lucky day, we get to sample the latest in First class meals!

SOME RANDOM FACTS

For a newly hired flight attendant at Swiss to work in First Class they must first complete a minimum of three years of service with the company, but due to the popularity of working in first class the actual wait time can be up to seven years!

On a yearly basis the airline goes through the following amounts of products:

Over 138,000kg of cheese!
Over 15.5 million pieces of those awesome Swiss chocolates you receive inflight.
Over 1.6 million Movenpick ice creams.
Over 256,000 bottles of wine in business class.
Over 69,000 bottles of winde in first class.

Now speaking of wine four times a year wine expert Chandra Kurt comes to the headquarters of Swiss in order to select all the wines that First and Business class customers will pair with their meals.

THE PROCESS

Nine months before launch

First class airline meal planning can take up to nine months and it usually starts with the airline giving a briefing to their caterer of what they would like to see served inflight. Once the brief is received selected chefs will start to research, get inspiration and create menu ideas.

Five to Six months before launch

Six months before the first meal is to be served inflight the chefs will actually start to cook the first ‘sample’ dishes of their ideas. Five months before the airline caterer will invite Swiss to their facility in order to see the whole menu selection that the chefs have created, it is here that the Swiss product team get to taste everything that will feature on the new menus.

Three months before launch

Approximately three months before launch more staff from Swiss are invited to an inflight meal tasting session just to make sure everything will be perfect for the new meals, and to iron out any problems.

Oh my! It’s the day before launch!

The day before the first meal is to be served inflight everything on the menu is yet again created to specifications and taste tested again and again. These meals that took nine months to create will be served inflight for about 12 weeks and during this time chefs will continually taste test every single thing that is created in their kitchen.

THE TASTE TESTING

Currently specialities from Appenzellerland in Eastern Switzerland are gracing the tray tables of First and Business class passengers. We were fortunate enough to sample quite a number of dishes but the one that really stayed in our mind was the Blueberry slice with chocolate crumble and (wait for it) Appenseller beer ice cream. The airline has even decided to load real beer kegs on all flights from Quollfrisch, which will be served fresh to passengers from the tap (see picture) on flights to San Fransisco and Los Angeles.

A big thanks to the product team at Swiss and the lovely folks at Gate Gourmet for allowing us into their facilities at Zurich Airport!

The post How is that First Class Meal Created? appeared first on .


How First Dates won the nation’s heart

I f there is a truth universal, it is that dating is tough. And dating shows, with their array of conflicting messages, don’t help with the struggle. Do you go for equal parts overdressed and shameless (Take Me Out)? Or model yourself on a 1950s housewife and cook your way to love (Dinner Date)? Or maybe it’s best to just embrace cosmetic surgery and hope for the best (Love Island).

This is why the show First Dates is such a breath of fresh air. For those unfamiliar with the show’s greatness, let me explain. First Dates sticks to a simple but effective formula: a blind date followed by a debrief where the couple discuss their relationship prospects.

Just some normal people eating a meal then. But this makes for an attractive prospect when so much of what we see on our screens seems so contrived: from David Cameron’s poppy to Essena O’Neill’s Instagram to the majority of magazine covers that may as well be advertising Photoshop tools.

For authenticity-seeking, self-pitying millennials such as myself, it’s little wonder the show’s premise is attractive. Some 64% of us are apparently single, and the danger of contracting repetitive strain injury from Tinder swiping is very real. This realisation led me to apply to be matched with a blind date for the show’s background shots. In theory, it seemed a smart shortcut to spending the festive season with company. In reality, the episode will inevitably air glimpses of me trying, and failing, to eat spaghetti elegantly. Back to the drawing board (Tinder, again).

But if you’re a viewer, it’s hard not to get invested in the dates on screen. When English teacher Louis stuttered nervously, the British public fell for his charm and the media dubbed him “a darling of reality TV”. And when model Georgia got stood up, a whopping 2.2 million viewers tuned in the following week, rooting for the Geordie’s second attempt at love.

So, were touching moments like these created by a highly staged filming experience? Surprisingly not. The only instruction given to the singletons before their nerve-racking walk into the Paternoster Chop House was to relax and have fun. I chatted to a production team member who revealed equally kind sentiments, as he likened the behind-the-scenes operation to an actual match-making agency.

The dedication certainly seems to be paying off. The show has led to a smattering of official couples, with one pair moving in together. This isn’t quite up to Blind Date’s standards: the classic dating show spawned several marriages. With this season the longest yet, the British public’s appetite for on-screen dates shows no sign of abating, so it’s no surprise the production team aims to see a marriage eventually.

In terms of the dating experience itself, it’s difficult not to be acutely aware of the cameras. Sure, there was a nice hands-off approach to directing, but everyone is trying desperately to come across well. Inevitably, this meant turning to copious amounts of alcohol in order to dampen the nerves.

Thankfully, finding charm in the awkwardness is something we Brits excel at, mostly thanks to the influence of Hugh Grant. And the show has it in spades. We’re captivated, because the programme shows that, when it comes to dating, everyone is pretty similar. And by that I mean we all worry about looking like a spare part when our date’s in the toilet, and immediately scroll through Facebook.

Likewise, the anxiety of how to greet one’s date upon arrival (one kiss or two?) was something us girls on background dates really bonded over. As we agreed that two kisses seemed classy, I decided to take the plunge. Bad idea – my insistence flummoxed my date to such an extent that we forgot to introduce ourselves properly for close to two hours.

But it’s beyond these moments, away from the good, the bad, and the awkward, that the real magic happens. Everyone wants a happy ending, their chance at love. And this is where First Dates steps in to offer the opportunity to those from all backgrounds, ethnicities, ages and sexualities. And it does it so sensitively that it’s difficult to watch an episode without welling up.

So, did I find love? Not even close. A struggling journalist from north London and an estate agent from Essex (we love our cliches) had as little in common as you’d expect. But, I did leave the First Dates restaurant feeling a little warm and fuzzy. Therein lies the appeal of a dating show with a heart.


How First Dates won the nation’s heart

I f there is a truth universal, it is that dating is tough. And dating shows, with their array of conflicting messages, don’t help with the struggle. Do you go for equal parts overdressed and shameless (Take Me Out)? Or model yourself on a 1950s housewife and cook your way to love (Dinner Date)? Or maybe it’s best to just embrace cosmetic surgery and hope for the best (Love Island).

This is why the show First Dates is such a breath of fresh air. For those unfamiliar with the show’s greatness, let me explain. First Dates sticks to a simple but effective formula: a blind date followed by a debrief where the couple discuss their relationship prospects.

Just some normal people eating a meal then. But this makes for an attractive prospect when so much of what we see on our screens seems so contrived: from David Cameron’s poppy to Essena O’Neill’s Instagram to the majority of magazine covers that may as well be advertising Photoshop tools.

For authenticity-seeking, self-pitying millennials such as myself, it’s little wonder the show’s premise is attractive. Some 64% of us are apparently single, and the danger of contracting repetitive strain injury from Tinder swiping is very real. This realisation led me to apply to be matched with a blind date for the show’s background shots. In theory, it seemed a smart shortcut to spending the festive season with company. In reality, the episode will inevitably air glimpses of me trying, and failing, to eat spaghetti elegantly. Back to the drawing board (Tinder, again).

But if you’re a viewer, it’s hard not to get invested in the dates on screen. When English teacher Louis stuttered nervously, the British public fell for his charm and the media dubbed him “a darling of reality TV”. And when model Georgia got stood up, a whopping 2.2 million viewers tuned in the following week, rooting for the Geordie’s second attempt at love.

So, were touching moments like these created by a highly staged filming experience? Surprisingly not. The only instruction given to the singletons before their nerve-racking walk into the Paternoster Chop House was to relax and have fun. I chatted to a production team member who revealed equally kind sentiments, as he likened the behind-the-scenes operation to an actual match-making agency.

The dedication certainly seems to be paying off. The show has led to a smattering of official couples, with one pair moving in together. This isn’t quite up to Blind Date’s standards: the classic dating show spawned several marriages. With this season the longest yet, the British public’s appetite for on-screen dates shows no sign of abating, so it’s no surprise the production team aims to see a marriage eventually.

In terms of the dating experience itself, it’s difficult not to be acutely aware of the cameras. Sure, there was a nice hands-off approach to directing, but everyone is trying desperately to come across well. Inevitably, this meant turning to copious amounts of alcohol in order to dampen the nerves.

Thankfully, finding charm in the awkwardness is something we Brits excel at, mostly thanks to the influence of Hugh Grant. And the show has it in spades. We’re captivated, because the programme shows that, when it comes to dating, everyone is pretty similar. And by that I mean we all worry about looking like a spare part when our date’s in the toilet, and immediately scroll through Facebook.

Likewise, the anxiety of how to greet one’s date upon arrival (one kiss or two?) was something us girls on background dates really bonded over. As we agreed that two kisses seemed classy, I decided to take the plunge. Bad idea – my insistence flummoxed my date to such an extent that we forgot to introduce ourselves properly for close to two hours.

But it’s beyond these moments, away from the good, the bad, and the awkward, that the real magic happens. Everyone wants a happy ending, their chance at love. And this is where First Dates steps in to offer the opportunity to those from all backgrounds, ethnicities, ages and sexualities. And it does it so sensitively that it’s difficult to watch an episode without welling up.

So, did I find love? Not even close. A struggling journalist from north London and an estate agent from Essex (we love our cliches) had as little in common as you’d expect. But, I did leave the First Dates restaurant feeling a little warm and fuzzy. Therein lies the appeal of a dating show with a heart.


How First Dates won the nation’s heart

I f there is a truth universal, it is that dating is tough. And dating shows, with their array of conflicting messages, don’t help with the struggle. Do you go for equal parts overdressed and shameless (Take Me Out)? Or model yourself on a 1950s housewife and cook your way to love (Dinner Date)? Or maybe it’s best to just embrace cosmetic surgery and hope for the best (Love Island).

This is why the show First Dates is such a breath of fresh air. For those unfamiliar with the show’s greatness, let me explain. First Dates sticks to a simple but effective formula: a blind date followed by a debrief where the couple discuss their relationship prospects.

Just some normal people eating a meal then. But this makes for an attractive prospect when so much of what we see on our screens seems so contrived: from David Cameron’s poppy to Essena O’Neill’s Instagram to the majority of magazine covers that may as well be advertising Photoshop tools.

For authenticity-seeking, self-pitying millennials such as myself, it’s little wonder the show’s premise is attractive. Some 64% of us are apparently single, and the danger of contracting repetitive strain injury from Tinder swiping is very real. This realisation led me to apply to be matched with a blind date for the show’s background shots. In theory, it seemed a smart shortcut to spending the festive season with company. In reality, the episode will inevitably air glimpses of me trying, and failing, to eat spaghetti elegantly. Back to the drawing board (Tinder, again).

But if you’re a viewer, it’s hard not to get invested in the dates on screen. When English teacher Louis stuttered nervously, the British public fell for his charm and the media dubbed him “a darling of reality TV”. And when model Georgia got stood up, a whopping 2.2 million viewers tuned in the following week, rooting for the Geordie’s second attempt at love.

So, were touching moments like these created by a highly staged filming experience? Surprisingly not. The only instruction given to the singletons before their nerve-racking walk into the Paternoster Chop House was to relax and have fun. I chatted to a production team member who revealed equally kind sentiments, as he likened the behind-the-scenes operation to an actual match-making agency.

The dedication certainly seems to be paying off. The show has led to a smattering of official couples, with one pair moving in together. This isn’t quite up to Blind Date’s standards: the classic dating show spawned several marriages. With this season the longest yet, the British public’s appetite for on-screen dates shows no sign of abating, so it’s no surprise the production team aims to see a marriage eventually.

In terms of the dating experience itself, it’s difficult not to be acutely aware of the cameras. Sure, there was a nice hands-off approach to directing, but everyone is trying desperately to come across well. Inevitably, this meant turning to copious amounts of alcohol in order to dampen the nerves.

Thankfully, finding charm in the awkwardness is something we Brits excel at, mostly thanks to the influence of Hugh Grant. And the show has it in spades. We’re captivated, because the programme shows that, when it comes to dating, everyone is pretty similar. And by that I mean we all worry about looking like a spare part when our date’s in the toilet, and immediately scroll through Facebook.

Likewise, the anxiety of how to greet one’s date upon arrival (one kiss or two?) was something us girls on background dates really bonded over. As we agreed that two kisses seemed classy, I decided to take the plunge. Bad idea – my insistence flummoxed my date to such an extent that we forgot to introduce ourselves properly for close to two hours.

But it’s beyond these moments, away from the good, the bad, and the awkward, that the real magic happens. Everyone wants a happy ending, their chance at love. And this is where First Dates steps in to offer the opportunity to those from all backgrounds, ethnicities, ages and sexualities. And it does it so sensitively that it’s difficult to watch an episode without welling up.

So, did I find love? Not even close. A struggling journalist from north London and an estate agent from Essex (we love our cliches) had as little in common as you’d expect. But, I did leave the First Dates restaurant feeling a little warm and fuzzy. Therein lies the appeal of a dating show with a heart.


How First Dates won the nation’s heart

I f there is a truth universal, it is that dating is tough. And dating shows, with their array of conflicting messages, don’t help with the struggle. Do you go for equal parts overdressed and shameless (Take Me Out)? Or model yourself on a 1950s housewife and cook your way to love (Dinner Date)? Or maybe it’s best to just embrace cosmetic surgery and hope for the best (Love Island).

This is why the show First Dates is such a breath of fresh air. For those unfamiliar with the show’s greatness, let me explain. First Dates sticks to a simple but effective formula: a blind date followed by a debrief where the couple discuss their relationship prospects.

Just some normal people eating a meal then. But this makes for an attractive prospect when so much of what we see on our screens seems so contrived: from David Cameron’s poppy to Essena O’Neill’s Instagram to the majority of magazine covers that may as well be advertising Photoshop tools.

For authenticity-seeking, self-pitying millennials such as myself, it’s little wonder the show’s premise is attractive. Some 64% of us are apparently single, and the danger of contracting repetitive strain injury from Tinder swiping is very real. This realisation led me to apply to be matched with a blind date for the show’s background shots. In theory, it seemed a smart shortcut to spending the festive season with company. In reality, the episode will inevitably air glimpses of me trying, and failing, to eat spaghetti elegantly. Back to the drawing board (Tinder, again).

But if you’re a viewer, it’s hard not to get invested in the dates on screen. When English teacher Louis stuttered nervously, the British public fell for his charm and the media dubbed him “a darling of reality TV”. And when model Georgia got stood up, a whopping 2.2 million viewers tuned in the following week, rooting for the Geordie’s second attempt at love.

So, were touching moments like these created by a highly staged filming experience? Surprisingly not. The only instruction given to the singletons before their nerve-racking walk into the Paternoster Chop House was to relax and have fun. I chatted to a production team member who revealed equally kind sentiments, as he likened the behind-the-scenes operation to an actual match-making agency.

The dedication certainly seems to be paying off. The show has led to a smattering of official couples, with one pair moving in together. This isn’t quite up to Blind Date’s standards: the classic dating show spawned several marriages. With this season the longest yet, the British public’s appetite for on-screen dates shows no sign of abating, so it’s no surprise the production team aims to see a marriage eventually.

In terms of the dating experience itself, it’s difficult not to be acutely aware of the cameras. Sure, there was a nice hands-off approach to directing, but everyone is trying desperately to come across well. Inevitably, this meant turning to copious amounts of alcohol in order to dampen the nerves.

Thankfully, finding charm in the awkwardness is something we Brits excel at, mostly thanks to the influence of Hugh Grant. And the show has it in spades. We’re captivated, because the programme shows that, when it comes to dating, everyone is pretty similar. And by that I mean we all worry about looking like a spare part when our date’s in the toilet, and immediately scroll through Facebook.

Likewise, the anxiety of how to greet one’s date upon arrival (one kiss or two?) was something us girls on background dates really bonded over. As we agreed that two kisses seemed classy, I decided to take the plunge. Bad idea – my insistence flummoxed my date to such an extent that we forgot to introduce ourselves properly for close to two hours.

But it’s beyond these moments, away from the good, the bad, and the awkward, that the real magic happens. Everyone wants a happy ending, their chance at love. And this is where First Dates steps in to offer the opportunity to those from all backgrounds, ethnicities, ages and sexualities. And it does it so sensitively that it’s difficult to watch an episode without welling up.

So, did I find love? Not even close. A struggling journalist from north London and an estate agent from Essex (we love our cliches) had as little in common as you’d expect. But, I did leave the First Dates restaurant feeling a little warm and fuzzy. Therein lies the appeal of a dating show with a heart.


How First Dates won the nation’s heart

I f there is a truth universal, it is that dating is tough. And dating shows, with their array of conflicting messages, don’t help with the struggle. Do you go for equal parts overdressed and shameless (Take Me Out)? Or model yourself on a 1950s housewife and cook your way to love (Dinner Date)? Or maybe it’s best to just embrace cosmetic surgery and hope for the best (Love Island).

This is why the show First Dates is such a breath of fresh air. For those unfamiliar with the show’s greatness, let me explain. First Dates sticks to a simple but effective formula: a blind date followed by a debrief where the couple discuss their relationship prospects.

Just some normal people eating a meal then. But this makes for an attractive prospect when so much of what we see on our screens seems so contrived: from David Cameron’s poppy to Essena O’Neill’s Instagram to the majority of magazine covers that may as well be advertising Photoshop tools.

For authenticity-seeking, self-pitying millennials such as myself, it’s little wonder the show’s premise is attractive. Some 64% of us are apparently single, and the danger of contracting repetitive strain injury from Tinder swiping is very real. This realisation led me to apply to be matched with a blind date for the show’s background shots. In theory, it seemed a smart shortcut to spending the festive season with company. In reality, the episode will inevitably air glimpses of me trying, and failing, to eat spaghetti elegantly. Back to the drawing board (Tinder, again).

But if you’re a viewer, it’s hard not to get invested in the dates on screen. When English teacher Louis stuttered nervously, the British public fell for his charm and the media dubbed him “a darling of reality TV”. And when model Georgia got stood up, a whopping 2.2 million viewers tuned in the following week, rooting for the Geordie’s second attempt at love.

So, were touching moments like these created by a highly staged filming experience? Surprisingly not. The only instruction given to the singletons before their nerve-racking walk into the Paternoster Chop House was to relax and have fun. I chatted to a production team member who revealed equally kind sentiments, as he likened the behind-the-scenes operation to an actual match-making agency.

The dedication certainly seems to be paying off. The show has led to a smattering of official couples, with one pair moving in together. This isn’t quite up to Blind Date’s standards: the classic dating show spawned several marriages. With this season the longest yet, the British public’s appetite for on-screen dates shows no sign of abating, so it’s no surprise the production team aims to see a marriage eventually.

In terms of the dating experience itself, it’s difficult not to be acutely aware of the cameras. Sure, there was a nice hands-off approach to directing, but everyone is trying desperately to come across well. Inevitably, this meant turning to copious amounts of alcohol in order to dampen the nerves.

Thankfully, finding charm in the awkwardness is something we Brits excel at, mostly thanks to the influence of Hugh Grant. And the show has it in spades. We’re captivated, because the programme shows that, when it comes to dating, everyone is pretty similar. And by that I mean we all worry about looking like a spare part when our date’s in the toilet, and immediately scroll through Facebook.

Likewise, the anxiety of how to greet one’s date upon arrival (one kiss or two?) was something us girls on background dates really bonded over. As we agreed that two kisses seemed classy, I decided to take the plunge. Bad idea – my insistence flummoxed my date to such an extent that we forgot to introduce ourselves properly for close to two hours.

But it’s beyond these moments, away from the good, the bad, and the awkward, that the real magic happens. Everyone wants a happy ending, their chance at love. And this is where First Dates steps in to offer the opportunity to those from all backgrounds, ethnicities, ages and sexualities. And it does it so sensitively that it’s difficult to watch an episode without welling up.

So, did I find love? Not even close. A struggling journalist from north London and an estate agent from Essex (we love our cliches) had as little in common as you’d expect. But, I did leave the First Dates restaurant feeling a little warm and fuzzy. Therein lies the appeal of a dating show with a heart.


How First Dates won the nation’s heart

I f there is a truth universal, it is that dating is tough. And dating shows, with their array of conflicting messages, don’t help with the struggle. Do you go for equal parts overdressed and shameless (Take Me Out)? Or model yourself on a 1950s housewife and cook your way to love (Dinner Date)? Or maybe it’s best to just embrace cosmetic surgery and hope for the best (Love Island).

This is why the show First Dates is such a breath of fresh air. For those unfamiliar with the show’s greatness, let me explain. First Dates sticks to a simple but effective formula: a blind date followed by a debrief where the couple discuss their relationship prospects.

Just some normal people eating a meal then. But this makes for an attractive prospect when so much of what we see on our screens seems so contrived: from David Cameron’s poppy to Essena O’Neill’s Instagram to the majority of magazine covers that may as well be advertising Photoshop tools.

For authenticity-seeking, self-pitying millennials such as myself, it’s little wonder the show’s premise is attractive. Some 64% of us are apparently single, and the danger of contracting repetitive strain injury from Tinder swiping is very real. This realisation led me to apply to be matched with a blind date for the show’s background shots. In theory, it seemed a smart shortcut to spending the festive season with company. In reality, the episode will inevitably air glimpses of me trying, and failing, to eat spaghetti elegantly. Back to the drawing board (Tinder, again).

But if you’re a viewer, it’s hard not to get invested in the dates on screen. When English teacher Louis stuttered nervously, the British public fell for his charm and the media dubbed him “a darling of reality TV”. And when model Georgia got stood up, a whopping 2.2 million viewers tuned in the following week, rooting for the Geordie’s second attempt at love.

So, were touching moments like these created by a highly staged filming experience? Surprisingly not. The only instruction given to the singletons before their nerve-racking walk into the Paternoster Chop House was to relax and have fun. I chatted to a production team member who revealed equally kind sentiments, as he likened the behind-the-scenes operation to an actual match-making agency.

The dedication certainly seems to be paying off. The show has led to a smattering of official couples, with one pair moving in together. This isn’t quite up to Blind Date’s standards: the classic dating show spawned several marriages. With this season the longest yet, the British public’s appetite for on-screen dates shows no sign of abating, so it’s no surprise the production team aims to see a marriage eventually.

In terms of the dating experience itself, it’s difficult not to be acutely aware of the cameras. Sure, there was a nice hands-off approach to directing, but everyone is trying desperately to come across well. Inevitably, this meant turning to copious amounts of alcohol in order to dampen the nerves.

Thankfully, finding charm in the awkwardness is something we Brits excel at, mostly thanks to the influence of Hugh Grant. And the show has it in spades. We’re captivated, because the programme shows that, when it comes to dating, everyone is pretty similar. And by that I mean we all worry about looking like a spare part when our date’s in the toilet, and immediately scroll through Facebook.

Likewise, the anxiety of how to greet one’s date upon arrival (one kiss or two?) was something us girls on background dates really bonded over. As we agreed that two kisses seemed classy, I decided to take the plunge. Bad idea – my insistence flummoxed my date to such an extent that we forgot to introduce ourselves properly for close to two hours.

But it’s beyond these moments, away from the good, the bad, and the awkward, that the real magic happens. Everyone wants a happy ending, their chance at love. And this is where First Dates steps in to offer the opportunity to those from all backgrounds, ethnicities, ages and sexualities. And it does it so sensitively that it’s difficult to watch an episode without welling up.

So, did I find love? Not even close. A struggling journalist from north London and an estate agent from Essex (we love our cliches) had as little in common as you’d expect. But, I did leave the First Dates restaurant feeling a little warm and fuzzy. Therein lies the appeal of a dating show with a heart.


How First Dates won the nation’s heart

I f there is a truth universal, it is that dating is tough. And dating shows, with their array of conflicting messages, don’t help with the struggle. Do you go for equal parts overdressed and shameless (Take Me Out)? Or model yourself on a 1950s housewife and cook your way to love (Dinner Date)? Or maybe it’s best to just embrace cosmetic surgery and hope for the best (Love Island).

This is why the show First Dates is such a breath of fresh air. For those unfamiliar with the show’s greatness, let me explain. First Dates sticks to a simple but effective formula: a blind date followed by a debrief where the couple discuss their relationship prospects.

Just some normal people eating a meal then. But this makes for an attractive prospect when so much of what we see on our screens seems so contrived: from David Cameron’s poppy to Essena O’Neill’s Instagram to the majority of magazine covers that may as well be advertising Photoshop tools.

For authenticity-seeking, self-pitying millennials such as myself, it’s little wonder the show’s premise is attractive. Some 64% of us are apparently single, and the danger of contracting repetitive strain injury from Tinder swiping is very real. This realisation led me to apply to be matched with a blind date for the show’s background shots. In theory, it seemed a smart shortcut to spending the festive season with company. In reality, the episode will inevitably air glimpses of me trying, and failing, to eat spaghetti elegantly. Back to the drawing board (Tinder, again).

But if you’re a viewer, it’s hard not to get invested in the dates on screen. When English teacher Louis stuttered nervously, the British public fell for his charm and the media dubbed him “a darling of reality TV”. And when model Georgia got stood up, a whopping 2.2 million viewers tuned in the following week, rooting for the Geordie’s second attempt at love.

So, were touching moments like these created by a highly staged filming experience? Surprisingly not. The only instruction given to the singletons before their nerve-racking walk into the Paternoster Chop House was to relax and have fun. I chatted to a production team member who revealed equally kind sentiments, as he likened the behind-the-scenes operation to an actual match-making agency.

The dedication certainly seems to be paying off. The show has led to a smattering of official couples, with one pair moving in together. This isn’t quite up to Blind Date’s standards: the classic dating show spawned several marriages. With this season the longest yet, the British public’s appetite for on-screen dates shows no sign of abating, so it’s no surprise the production team aims to see a marriage eventually.

In terms of the dating experience itself, it’s difficult not to be acutely aware of the cameras. Sure, there was a nice hands-off approach to directing, but everyone is trying desperately to come across well. Inevitably, this meant turning to copious amounts of alcohol in order to dampen the nerves.

Thankfully, finding charm in the awkwardness is something we Brits excel at, mostly thanks to the influence of Hugh Grant. And the show has it in spades. We’re captivated, because the programme shows that, when it comes to dating, everyone is pretty similar. And by that I mean we all worry about looking like a spare part when our date’s in the toilet, and immediately scroll through Facebook.

Likewise, the anxiety of how to greet one’s date upon arrival (one kiss or two?) was something us girls on background dates really bonded over. As we agreed that two kisses seemed classy, I decided to take the plunge. Bad idea – my insistence flummoxed my date to such an extent that we forgot to introduce ourselves properly for close to two hours.

But it’s beyond these moments, away from the good, the bad, and the awkward, that the real magic happens. Everyone wants a happy ending, their chance at love. And this is where First Dates steps in to offer the opportunity to those from all backgrounds, ethnicities, ages and sexualities. And it does it so sensitively that it’s difficult to watch an episode without welling up.

So, did I find love? Not even close. A struggling journalist from north London and an estate agent from Essex (we love our cliches) had as little in common as you’d expect. But, I did leave the First Dates restaurant feeling a little warm and fuzzy. Therein lies the appeal of a dating show with a heart.


How First Dates won the nation’s heart

I f there is a truth universal, it is that dating is tough. And dating shows, with their array of conflicting messages, don’t help with the struggle. Do you go for equal parts overdressed and shameless (Take Me Out)? Or model yourself on a 1950s housewife and cook your way to love (Dinner Date)? Or maybe it’s best to just embrace cosmetic surgery and hope for the best (Love Island).

This is why the show First Dates is such a breath of fresh air. For those unfamiliar with the show’s greatness, let me explain. First Dates sticks to a simple but effective formula: a blind date followed by a debrief where the couple discuss their relationship prospects.

Just some normal people eating a meal then. But this makes for an attractive prospect when so much of what we see on our screens seems so contrived: from David Cameron’s poppy to Essena O’Neill’s Instagram to the majority of magazine covers that may as well be advertising Photoshop tools.

For authenticity-seeking, self-pitying millennials such as myself, it’s little wonder the show’s premise is attractive. Some 64% of us are apparently single, and the danger of contracting repetitive strain injury from Tinder swiping is very real. This realisation led me to apply to be matched with a blind date for the show’s background shots. In theory, it seemed a smart shortcut to spending the festive season with company. In reality, the episode will inevitably air glimpses of me trying, and failing, to eat spaghetti elegantly. Back to the drawing board (Tinder, again).

But if you’re a viewer, it’s hard not to get invested in the dates on screen. When English teacher Louis stuttered nervously, the British public fell for his charm and the media dubbed him “a darling of reality TV”. And when model Georgia got stood up, a whopping 2.2 million viewers tuned in the following week, rooting for the Geordie’s second attempt at love.

So, were touching moments like these created by a highly staged filming experience? Surprisingly not. The only instruction given to the singletons before their nerve-racking walk into the Paternoster Chop House was to relax and have fun. I chatted to a production team member who revealed equally kind sentiments, as he likened the behind-the-scenes operation to an actual match-making agency.

The dedication certainly seems to be paying off. The show has led to a smattering of official couples, with one pair moving in together. This isn’t quite up to Blind Date’s standards: the classic dating show spawned several marriages. With this season the longest yet, the British public’s appetite for on-screen dates shows no sign of abating, so it’s no surprise the production team aims to see a marriage eventually.

In terms of the dating experience itself, it’s difficult not to be acutely aware of the cameras. Sure, there was a nice hands-off approach to directing, but everyone is trying desperately to come across well. Inevitably, this meant turning to copious amounts of alcohol in order to dampen the nerves.

Thankfully, finding charm in the awkwardness is something we Brits excel at, mostly thanks to the influence of Hugh Grant. And the show has it in spades. We’re captivated, because the programme shows that, when it comes to dating, everyone is pretty similar. And by that I mean we all worry about looking like a spare part when our date’s in the toilet, and immediately scroll through Facebook.

Likewise, the anxiety of how to greet one’s date upon arrival (one kiss or two?) was something us girls on background dates really bonded over. As we agreed that two kisses seemed classy, I decided to take the plunge. Bad idea – my insistence flummoxed my date to such an extent that we forgot to introduce ourselves properly for close to two hours.

But it’s beyond these moments, away from the good, the bad, and the awkward, that the real magic happens. Everyone wants a happy ending, their chance at love. And this is where First Dates steps in to offer the opportunity to those from all backgrounds, ethnicities, ages and sexualities. And it does it so sensitively that it’s difficult to watch an episode without welling up.

So, did I find love? Not even close. A struggling journalist from north London and an estate agent from Essex (we love our cliches) had as little in common as you’d expect. But, I did leave the First Dates restaurant feeling a little warm and fuzzy. Therein lies the appeal of a dating show with a heart.


How First Dates won the nation’s heart

I f there is a truth universal, it is that dating is tough. And dating shows, with their array of conflicting messages, don’t help with the struggle. Do you go for equal parts overdressed and shameless (Take Me Out)? Or model yourself on a 1950s housewife and cook your way to love (Dinner Date)? Or maybe it’s best to just embrace cosmetic surgery and hope for the best (Love Island).

This is why the show First Dates is such a breath of fresh air. For those unfamiliar with the show’s greatness, let me explain. First Dates sticks to a simple but effective formula: a blind date followed by a debrief where the couple discuss their relationship prospects.

Just some normal people eating a meal then. But this makes for an attractive prospect when so much of what we see on our screens seems so contrived: from David Cameron’s poppy to Essena O’Neill’s Instagram to the majority of magazine covers that may as well be advertising Photoshop tools.

For authenticity-seeking, self-pitying millennials such as myself, it’s little wonder the show’s premise is attractive. Some 64% of us are apparently single, and the danger of contracting repetitive strain injury from Tinder swiping is very real. This realisation led me to apply to be matched with a blind date for the show’s background shots. In theory, it seemed a smart shortcut to spending the festive season with company. In reality, the episode will inevitably air glimpses of me trying, and failing, to eat spaghetti elegantly. Back to the drawing board (Tinder, again).

But if you’re a viewer, it’s hard not to get invested in the dates on screen. When English teacher Louis stuttered nervously, the British public fell for his charm and the media dubbed him “a darling of reality TV”. And when model Georgia got stood up, a whopping 2.2 million viewers tuned in the following week, rooting for the Geordie’s second attempt at love.

So, were touching moments like these created by a highly staged filming experience? Surprisingly not. The only instruction given to the singletons before their nerve-racking walk into the Paternoster Chop House was to relax and have fun. I chatted to a production team member who revealed equally kind sentiments, as he likened the behind-the-scenes operation to an actual match-making agency.

The dedication certainly seems to be paying off. The show has led to a smattering of official couples, with one pair moving in together. This isn’t quite up to Blind Date’s standards: the classic dating show spawned several marriages. With this season the longest yet, the British public’s appetite for on-screen dates shows no sign of abating, so it’s no surprise the production team aims to see a marriage eventually.

In terms of the dating experience itself, it’s difficult not to be acutely aware of the cameras. Sure, there was a nice hands-off approach to directing, but everyone is trying desperately to come across well. Inevitably, this meant turning to copious amounts of alcohol in order to dampen the nerves.

Thankfully, finding charm in the awkwardness is something we Brits excel at, mostly thanks to the influence of Hugh Grant. And the show has it in spades. We’re captivated, because the programme shows that, when it comes to dating, everyone is pretty similar. And by that I mean we all worry about looking like a spare part when our date’s in the toilet, and immediately scroll through Facebook.

Likewise, the anxiety of how to greet one’s date upon arrival (one kiss or two?) was something us girls on background dates really bonded over. As we agreed that two kisses seemed classy, I decided to take the plunge. Bad idea – my insistence flummoxed my date to such an extent that we forgot to introduce ourselves properly for close to two hours.

But it’s beyond these moments, away from the good, the bad, and the awkward, that the real magic happens. Everyone wants a happy ending, their chance at love. And this is where First Dates steps in to offer the opportunity to those from all backgrounds, ethnicities, ages and sexualities. And it does it so sensitively that it’s difficult to watch an episode without welling up.

So, did I find love? Not even close. A struggling journalist from north London and an estate agent from Essex (we love our cliches) had as little in common as you’d expect. But, I did leave the First Dates restaurant feeling a little warm and fuzzy. Therein lies the appeal of a dating show with a heart.


How First Dates won the nation’s heart

I f there is a truth universal, it is that dating is tough. And dating shows, with their array of conflicting messages, don’t help with the struggle. Do you go for equal parts overdressed and shameless (Take Me Out)? Or model yourself on a 1950s housewife and cook your way to love (Dinner Date)? Or maybe it’s best to just embrace cosmetic surgery and hope for the best (Love Island).

This is why the show First Dates is such a breath of fresh air. For those unfamiliar with the show’s greatness, let me explain. First Dates sticks to a simple but effective formula: a blind date followed by a debrief where the couple discuss their relationship prospects.

Just some normal people eating a meal then. But this makes for an attractive prospect when so much of what we see on our screens seems so contrived: from David Cameron’s poppy to Essena O’Neill’s Instagram to the majority of magazine covers that may as well be advertising Photoshop tools.

For authenticity-seeking, self-pitying millennials such as myself, it’s little wonder the show’s premise is attractive. Some 64% of us are apparently single, and the danger of contracting repetitive strain injury from Tinder swiping is very real. This realisation led me to apply to be matched with a blind date for the show’s background shots. In theory, it seemed a smart shortcut to spending the festive season with company. In reality, the episode will inevitably air glimpses of me trying, and failing, to eat spaghetti elegantly. Back to the drawing board (Tinder, again).

But if you’re a viewer, it’s hard not to get invested in the dates on screen. When English teacher Louis stuttered nervously, the British public fell for his charm and the media dubbed him “a darling of reality TV”. And when model Georgia got stood up, a whopping 2.2 million viewers tuned in the following week, rooting for the Geordie’s second attempt at love.

So, were touching moments like these created by a highly staged filming experience? Surprisingly not. The only instruction given to the singletons before their nerve-racking walk into the Paternoster Chop House was to relax and have fun. I chatted to a production team member who revealed equally kind sentiments, as he likened the behind-the-scenes operation to an actual match-making agency.

The dedication certainly seems to be paying off. The show has led to a smattering of official couples, with one pair moving in together. This isn’t quite up to Blind Date’s standards: the classic dating show spawned several marriages. With this season the longest yet, the British public’s appetite for on-screen dates shows no sign of abating, so it’s no surprise the production team aims to see a marriage eventually.

In terms of the dating experience itself, it’s difficult not to be acutely aware of the cameras. Sure, there was a nice hands-off approach to directing, but everyone is trying desperately to come across well. Inevitably, this meant turning to copious amounts of alcohol in order to dampen the nerves.

Thankfully, finding charm in the awkwardness is something we Brits excel at, mostly thanks to the influence of Hugh Grant. And the show has it in spades. We’re captivated, because the programme shows that, when it comes to dating, everyone is pretty similar. And by that I mean we all worry about looking like a spare part when our date’s in the toilet, and immediately scroll through Facebook.

Likewise, the anxiety of how to greet one’s date upon arrival (one kiss or two?) was something us girls on background dates really bonded over. As we agreed that two kisses seemed classy, I decided to take the plunge. Bad idea – my insistence flummoxed my date to such an extent that we forgot to introduce ourselves properly for close to two hours.

But it’s beyond these moments, away from the good, the bad, and the awkward, that the real magic happens. Everyone wants a happy ending, their chance at love. And this is where First Dates steps in to offer the opportunity to those from all backgrounds, ethnicities, ages and sexualities. And it does it so sensitively that it’s difficult to watch an episode without welling up.

So, did I find love? Not even close. A struggling journalist from north London and an estate agent from Essex (we love our cliches) had as little in common as you’d expect. But, I did leave the First Dates restaurant feeling a little warm and fuzzy. Therein lies the appeal of a dating show with a heart.



Comments:

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  2. Nevada

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  3. Botolf

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  4. Gotaxe

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  5. Gagore

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