Starred cars: the best menus from the most exclusive trains in the World

Written by Domenico Di Maio

Week 42

Trains may represent, for the vast majority of people, a problematic form of transportation. Given that not everyone can enjoy the privilege of traveling in business class, and often have to settle for tight and uncomfortable seats, not many passengers think about food when they choose to travel aboard the locomotive. And by food we mean REAL food, not the junk food passed around in second class.
So let’s talk about this further – the real culinary deal. There are trains that enable passengers to go on a journey of discovery, punctuated by stops of picturesque places, essentially becoming cruises by land. It is these voyages that offer services of the highest calibre.
Luxury trains, designed to provide unforgettable experiences.
We had a sneak peek at some of the main companies in the sector, and put together our own menus, confirming the idea that trains are more than just problematic means of transportation. Because when traveling such long distances, the only way to take care of your body and mind is to consider the food.
Another piece of advice: pay attention to the dress code too, because these luxury experiences often require additional elegance.


El Transcantabrico
The Jewel of the Iberian railway, the Transcantabrico, is considered the oldest tourist train in Spain. It uses original 1923 Pullman coaches that have been renovated to ensure a truly luxurious experience. Enjoy a scenic trip through the beautiful landscapes of northern Spain, from Galicia to the shores of the Bay of Biscay, taking in Asturias, Cantabria, the Basque and Castilla.
The prized ingredients from the local region are often used to create the exquisite dishes.
For the occasion, we chose a full menu consisting of a starter, first, second, dessert and wine.

Brie cheese, tomato timbale and truffle oil. Leek and shrimp pie
1/2 grilled turbot accompanied by pintxos of Oriotarra
1/2 roast loin with potatoes
Pancakes with raspberry yogurt

To accompany: White Perelada, Navarro Las Campanas Rosato, Rioja Tinto


The Blue Train
The Blue Train was created to fulfil a wish: to connect the vastness of Africa from south to north.
Combine business with pleasure by covering a portion of the immense continent and enjoying breathtaking landscapes, thanks to excellent service that is hard to find elsewhere.
The elegant dining cart comfortably accommodates 42 people in a single sitting, and offers a wine list approved by the Annual Diner’s Club Award, and dishes prepared with ingredients from the local area.
Below is a brief overview of what you can expect:

Smoked chicken fillet served on a bed of vegetables
Julienne vegetables and shavings of Parmesan
Sprout salad, shrimp curry and plum sauce
Carrot and lentil soup
Beef Wellington (beef fillet coated with pâté and duxelles and wrapped in puff pastry), served with rosemary potatoes and Merlot
Norwegian salmon served with potatoes, finished with a caper and garlic cream sauce
Crispy duck breast with potatoes
Dark chocolate
Mango sorbet
Black currant mousse served with raspberries


Let’s talk about one of the most famous luxury train companies in the world. Since 1989 it has covered a stretch that runs from South Africa (Cape Town) to Tanzania (Dar es Salaam) through some of the greatest wonders of the world, such as the Victoria Falls and vast, fascinating stretches of desert.
The suites are superb and decorated in the Victorian style, and the kitchen is equally impressive. A team of qualified chefs will take care of your tastebuds, and allow you to sample all the local delicacies, accompanied by South African wine of course.

Lemon-scented Hollandaise sauce
Grilled scallops with Pecan Stream Chenin Blanc
Karoo roast, boneless lamb shank with mashed potatoes, green beans and mushrooms accompanied by a Meerlust Rubicon
Camembert and blue-veined cheeses, served with melon and chives
Jam-glazed pudding topped with Turkish apricots
Van Der Hum liqueur
A selection of teas and Kenyan coffee