The new flagship lounge in JFK is available to passengers flying business or first class. I’ve heard concerns that it may suffer from overcrowding as the flagship lounge used to only be for first class passengers. To this I counter that these new full size lounges are only for passengers flying business or first and not for people that pay to have an Admirals Club membership outright or through a credit card. This keeps the two Admirals Club users segregated. This lounge is stunning with fantastic views of the tarmac by terminal 8. The new greatly expanded food options are fairly extensive and I’d have no problem making a meal of it. They have done away with the ridiculous cash bar at Admirals Clubs and replaced that with free self-service sections that are very adequate.
Off in a separate room is the Flagship Dining. American’s new restaurant concept.
This is only available to passengers flying first class which is interesting that they would invest on this as in the long run AA will only have two international first class flights a day out of JFK, Sao Paolo and London. The majority of first class passengers leaving from JFK will be traveling to San Francisco or Los Angeles as there are multiple flights a day to both destinations flying the 3 cabin A321T.
As I was flying first class to London I had access to the dining facility. There was only one other person using the Flagship Dining while I was there.
The burger will be a mainstay across the facilities while the other items will be locally inspired.
I ordered an Old Manhattan to begin with the Arancini. Both were quite good. For my main I ordered the Olive Oil Poached Salmon which was fantastic. It was served with sautéed mushrooms on a bed of cauliflower risotto, which was very interesting and delicious. Overall the food was terrific. I’m very impressed with American Airlines with the food offering and will have to figure out ways to fly first class out of JFK just to eat here, not really but it’s an excuse. As well as the Flagship Dining that’s coming to LAX and Miami. Checking out all the Flagship dining facilities will be on my 2018 bucket list, if they are all open by then.
I’m very impressed with the new lounge. Kudos to American and it was definitely worth the countless times of having no lounge due to construction. The lounge was comfortably full yet with plenty of open seating and lots of small corners that were empty. The buffet options looked good although since I ate in the Flagship Dining I have yet to try the buffet food. I found the Flagship Dining to rival the Qantas First Class lounge in terms of quality of food although there were fewer options.