The battle for hearts and minds on Australia's increasingly competitive east-west airline routes has extended to stomachs as Qantas and Virgin business class cabins fight for passengers with posh in-flight dining offers, celebrity chefs, restaurant-inspired menus and wine lists.
The Weekend West took a round trip to Sydney recently - Qantas out and Virgin back - to compare the two business class cabins on what has become one of the most profitable and contested routes in Australian aviation.
The airlines are bending over backwards to impress their VIP customers.
On Virgin Australia that means international standard full-length lie-flat beds, lunch and dinner menus, a wine list complete with tasting notes and commentary and a host of little things: cute salt and pepper shakers rather than sachets (still standard on Qantas) and a business concierge who walks you on to the plane, ensures you're comfortable and then "works" the cabin making contact with the high-end passengers.
Qantas, for its part, is not taking the Virgin challenge lying down.
It, too, has lie-flat beds - the Australian designer Mark Newson's celebrated pods.
And Qantas has launched one of the smallest but cleverest innovations in in-sky dining, the amuse bouche: a small pre-meal hot snack, designed to keep demanding business customers happy while the cabin service cart inches its way down the aisle toward them.
"We looked at what we're doing internationally and aligned our domestic business class product accordingly," Qantas director of food Neil Perry said. "It's unique to the east-west routes because we have the time to roll out a more flexible, more international experience.
"We've designed a small plate/main plate menu which allows passengers to choose how they wish to eat without being hemmed in by a structured dining experience of starter, main and cheese."
Sydney chef Luke Mangan is the face of Virgin and the creator of its business class menus.
"We have more time to spend with the customers on the east-west routes which allows us to deliver on our 'restaurant in the sky' strategy," he said.
"I personally train crews once a month to get them on board about finishing off and garnishing our dishes."