Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Cibo Express, For Shame, For Shame

Recently I had the pleasure of flying jet Blue out of the old TWA terminal at JFK. The terminal is airy and white, all around modern.

Arriving at 6am I went on a search for an egg sandwich. I have a low opinion of airport food. But never have I been unable to find an egg sandwich of some type. Yet here I was breezing past juice bars and French style bistros serving press coffee, unable to locate two eggs on a roll.
I like getting eggs when traveling because even if they have followed a dubious path on their way to my plate, they will keep me full through long and delayed flights, car rental lines and traffic. Generally the alternatives to eggs are pastries and bagels. Those just aren't working for me. An occasional pastry as a treat is one thing, but it is not a stand in as a meal any more than a piece of cake.

Finally I found my way to the Cibo Express, purveyors of the easiest and freshest mass produced fare I have found at most airports. They are everywhere now, right? Cibo Express did have one line for egg sandwiches made to order but the line was crazy. They also had a hot bar of eggs, but I settled on a pre-wrapped egg salad sandwich because it required no fork.
After getting my coffee I turned to see this...

*GASP* the muffins were so big they were practically erotic. The seemingly steroid pumped flour bombs were piled up like cantaloupes. I think I might have actually muttered something aloud to myself in disbelief. I...had to. I had to read the label.

First of all, forgive my lousy photo, It was 6am and I was holding a muffin and taking a picture with my phone all before consuming coffee. Each muffin weighed in at a whopping 7.5 ounces, just under a half a pound. The label clearly stated that each muffin was two servings. And therefore, it contained 672 calories, 34 grams of fat and Holy Cannoli 52 grams of sugar with only 8 lonely grams of protein. That is gross. Cibo Express, you make lots of good food. You offer fresh options in an otherwise fried landscape. You are my airport go to. But this muffin is inexcusable and unnecessary. Shame on you for producing something so large and unhealthful! I do hold you to a higher standard because you are filling a gap in fresh food for health minded travelers across the country. I could lower my expectations of you to equal that of your faster paper bag take out competition, but then I would probably no longer patronize you.

Later, when I unwrapped it, I realized that my egg salad had been made with 'lite' mayo, so God only knows what I ate that morning. Stabilizers? Fillers? Dextrose? Who knows.

Why is it that it is so hard to find real food when you are traveling? Why is it all triple bacon cheeseburgers or fat free yogurt? Where is the middle ground for people like me? I am not on a Diet with a big "D". I am not always trying to "live life to its fullest" by over consuming greasy dopamine creating calories. I just want to eat food. And I would like to have enough protein and healthy fat to last me 4-5 hours until my next meal. And I am like everyone else, I have a budget and a plane to catch, so sitting down to table service for $12 French press coffee isn't an option. I am starting to see that this pendulum swing between over eating and over deprivation is the real problem of food and health in our great nation.


  1. That's not a muffin! It's a cake! Not that there's much difference between those to start out but that's the point isn't it. And people are probably buying that thing and eating it all in one sitting and then wondering why they are overweight and tired.

  2. I agree that there really should be better alternatives for healthy fast food. Could it really be that hard to supply??