Pre-Flight Meal: Wagamama, Sydney International Airport

Catching a night flight out of Sydney International Airport doesn’t leave much time to linger over a meal prior to take off. We check in at the Emirates terminal and after ridding ourselves of the weighty suitcases, thanks to a generous luggage allowance, we survey the various eateries for a meal that will be filling yet easy to digest. One can never predict the effects of turbulence on a flight.

Wagamama, Sydney International Airport

We spot Wagamama in the Departures Food Court, the Asian/Japanese inspired noodle restaurant and decide to give it a try. We are welcomed by a friendly waiter who asks us the time of our flight and offers us a choice of tables. He presents us with large fold out menus and asks if we would like a drink. We order a couple of Asahi Super Dry beers, a reminder of our holiday in Japan, toast to our trip and skim read the menu. Around us, people are digging into their food while they engage in animated conversations. The anticipation of boarding a flight is palpable.

Wagamama, Sydney International Airport

We place our order and our waiter explains that the dishes will be served in the order they are cooked, which means that our main courses may not arrive at the same time. We don’t mind. By that time, we have seen how quickly food is served and relax into enjoying the pre-boarding meal.

Wagamama, Sydney International Airport

We order yasai gyoza ($8.60) to share, deep fried vegetable dumplings filled with cabbage, carrot, water chestnut, onion, celery and Chinese leaf served with a chilli, garlic and soy sauce. The dumplings are crunchy and savoury, and go down nicely with the Asahi. With five dumplings to share, I offer Mr G the last piece.

Wagamama, Sydney International Airport

The chicken katsu ($12.60) arrives first. The chicken fillet is deep fried in crispy panko breadcrumbs, served with a light curry sauce and Japanese-style rice, garnished with mixed leaves and red pickles. The chicken is moist and tender, the skin a little crispy but I’m not much a fan of curry sauces. Mr G, however, finds it fragrant and spicy.

Wagamama, Sydney International Airport

There is only a brief wait before my dish arrives. The ginger chicken udon ($19.90) is a teppan-fried udon noodles with chicken marinated in ginger, garlic and lemongrass, served with snow peas, red onions, bean sprouts, chillies, egg and spring onions, garnished with pickled ginger and fresh coriander. Any dish described with a long list of ingredients better be flavoursome, and the first mouthful confirms the burst of flavours, a combination of zest and mild heat with a good contrast in texture.

Wagamama, Sydney International Airport

Our dining experience at Wagamama Sydney International Airport leaves us satsfied. The food is fresh, cooked on demand and is full on flavour. With a good choice of dishes including vegetarian options, friendly and efficient service, it is just what you would like before boarding a long haul flight.

We ask for the bill and take note of the Departure Gate. Emirates flight EK413 is now boarding.

Wagamama, Sydney International Airport

Sydney International Airport
T1, Level 2, Departures Food Court
Mascot Sydney NSW 2020

Wagamama, Sydney International Airport


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About the author

Corinne Mossati

Corinne Mossati is the Founder/Editor of popular online magazine Gourmantic and Cocktails & Bars, a website dedicated to cocktail culture and the discerning drinker. She is named in Australian Bartender Magazine’s Top 100 Most Influential List since 2013, is a member of The Academy responsible for judging the World’s 50 Best Bars. She has also judged the inaugural Australasian Whisky Awards and various national cocktail competitions.


  • The gyoza and katsu-don bring back memories two of my favourite non healthy Japanese foods. This does look good. Hope your flight went well.

    • Cate, the gyoza tasted even better than it looked! The flight was fine in terms of turbulence. Wish I could say the same with regards to the screaming baby…

  • I was just complaining about this to a friend in the airport yesterday.  It’s SO hard to find something that is tasty to eat in transit in so many places. I don’t understand how it can be so hard.  Either healthy or non-healthy, there just seems to be a lot of crap to eat ‘on the run’ in the airports. At the Pisa airport yesterday my choices were bags of potato chips or really really old pizza slices under a heat lamp.  I was delayed there (ended up choosing the potato chips) and I would have killed for something like this!  🙂

    • Forest, they sell duty free parmigiano in Milano airport, surely they can manage something better! The warmed up pizza sounds awful. And with more airlines charging for meals, airport food standards should (hopefully) improve.