Cathay Pacific may not be known as a distillery per-se, but the airline has rolled out its first beer, specially crafted for pressurised cabins. Named after “Betsy”, Cathay Pacific’s first aircraft, a Douglas DC-3 which flew passengers around the region in the 1940s and 1950s, Betsy Beer will be first served to First and Business Class passengers onboard flights between Hong Kong and destinations in the United Kingdom – Heathrow, Gatwick and Manchester – from 1 March until 30 April 2017.
The bottle, which features labels adorned with the DC-3, includes “Dragon Eye” fruit – a unique characteristic of the beverage. Known for its aromatic properties, the fruit adds to the round, rich, textural properties that make the beer distinctive. This flavour is enhanced further by the inclusion of a small component of New Territories’-sourced honey in the brewing process, giving the beer lighter floral notes, while the use of Fuggle, a revered hop and a mainstay of traditional British craft ales, lends it a pleasingly earthy and full-bodied flavour.
Many people will know that cabin pressure and altitude affects passengers’ taste buds, (one of the reasons airlines sometimes serve different Champagnes on the ground and in the sky) but by using a combination of science and traditional brewing methods, Betsy Beer, which Cathay Pacific has produced in harness with Hong Kong Beer Co, is created with a combination of Hong Kong and UK-sourced ingredients, aroma and necessary carbonation to taste great both in the air and on the ground.
In addition to Cathay Pacific flights to and from the UK, Betsy Beer will be available in the airline’s lounges in Hong Kong and Heathrow as well as a select number of Swire-owned restaurants in Hong Kong for a limited time.