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(Update: It's Back!) United Suspends Premium-Cabin Sundae Service

April 19, 2017
3 min read
(Update: It's Back!) United Suspends Premium-Cabin Sundae Service
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Update 7/5/17: United has now resumed premium-cabin sundae service, with ice cream being served in paper bowls. They're as tasty as ever, but the presentation's a bit lacking with this updated format:


Now this? Oh when will it end...

Assuming you manage to still be in your seat after the aircraft door is closed, you'll (no longer, for now) be in for a treat — well, one treat in particular. The pinnacle of in-flight decadence, an ooey gooey served-at-your-seat ice cream sundae, is but the latest casualty of United's crusade against anything and everything "flyer friendly."

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Okay, yeah, that was excessively dramatic and almost entirely tongue-in-cheek, but seriously though... ice cream sundaes are temporarily banned. Let's recap the events that led to this unspeakable travesty.

  • 1881 — Edward Berners, owner of Ed Berners' Ice Cream Parlor, inadvertently invents the ice cream sundae in Two Rivers, Wisconsin when he tops a scoop of ice cream with chocolate syrup. Yum!
  • 1926 — United Airlines is founded as the Varney Air Lines air mail service.
  • 1926-2016 — Other ice cream and aviation stuff happens.
  • 2016 — United launches Polaris business and first-class service with ice cream sundaes plated seat-side in fancy new glass bowls.
  • 2017 — United discontinues ice cream sundae service due to "glass breakage issues."

What say you, United?

We have temporarily suspended premium cabin sundae service while we review this matter further.

Uh oh... calorie-starved premium-cabin travelers have come to depend on these sundaes for in-flight sustenance. With lives at stake, should they consider taking their business elsewhere as the airline completes discovery and works to develop a (perhaps temporary) solution?

United Polaris First Review

Thank goodness... United's two steps ahead:

In the meantime, we are serving pre-packaged ice cream cups and mousse. We apologize for this and we are working quickly to identify a solution so we can resume service.

Naturally, our next question... what is this "pre-packaged ice cream" you speak of?

The airline responds:

We are temporarily serving Villa Dolce and Beechdean on international flights. Domestic ice cream service varies based upon availability.

So, all things considered, it sounds like business and first-class passengers are still being looked after. Beechdean's slogan is "Making Ice Cream," for goodness sakes, and a Google search of "Beechdean broken glass" returns zero relevant results. Villa Dolce sounds alright, too.

Unfortunately toppings appear to be excluded, however, so you might want to ask for a second serving of pre-packaged ice cream to make up for any lost calories from the generic "candy-coated chocolate," liquid topping and preserved fruit that United will hopefully restore to Polaris and domestic first-class flights soon.

The other assorted Polaris treats (mousse and meringue cups, caramel bars, etc.) are also still in play. So you should be good:

United Polaris First Review

We'll keep you apprised of the situation, of course, so stay tuned to TPG for all things #Sundaegate over the days, weeks and months to come.

Will you be taking your business to Kuwait Airways until this latest United setback has been resolved?

H/T: Live and Let's Fly

Featured image by Business-class passengers receive amenities you'll never see in coach — like a post-dinner sundae cart.