Skip to main content

May 18, 2023

Amtrak and Restaurateur Stephen Starr Unite to Redefine Culinary Excellence Onboard

For a full gallery of images related to the collaboration, please click here.

NEW YORK – Amtrak and STARR Restaurant Group, led by James Beard award-winning restaurateur Stephen Starr, today announced the launch of an all-new, premium Acela First Class dining menu on trains traveling on the Northeast Corridor between Boston and Washington D.C. Amtrak’s continuous investment in enhancing and improving the Acela First Class onboard experience is based on valuable customer feedback. The introduction of these sophisticated new offerings from STARR Restaurants, as well as Acela’s upgraded wine list, brings the First Class food and beverage service to the next level.

“Amtrak is pleased to partner with STARR Restaurant Group on new, premium meals designed to enhance the customer experience onboard Acela First Class,” said Amtrak Vice President Customer Service Stations & Onboard Robert Jordan. “Incorporating the STARR touch on our menus helps us deliver the world-class journey our customers expect, and our latest food and beverage offerings are sure to surprise and delight.”

Customers in Acela First Class will enjoy a rotating selection of new signature dishes from STARR Restaurant Groups’ renowned Northeast Corridor-based eateries, including fan favorites like Buddakan’s Black Pepper Beef and The Continental Mid-Town’s Chilled Sesame Noodles.

“I’ve worked on some really cool projects outside the walls of our restaurants, but the opportunity to collaborate on a premium dining menu for Amtrak’s Acela First Class might be my favorite project thus far,” said restaurateur Stephen Starr. “I’ve always loved train travel and I’m a frequent Acela First Class customer on the Philly to NYC segment, as are many of our guests. I’m excited to offer my fellow travelers restaurant-quality meals inspired by our popular restaurants in Philly and New York.”

The STARR Restaurant Group portfolio spans Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor, serving many of the same guests who ride in Acela First Class –– who will now be delighted to discover a similar level of culinary artistry and premium service onboard as they do at STARR’s award-winning restaurants.

In addition to the STARR culinary menu, First Class customers can enjoy sips from Amtrak’s upgraded wine offerings including Pommery Champagne, Justin Sauvignon Blanc, Landmark Pinot Noir and Daou Rosé. For those travelling in the morning, a line-up of local bakeries deliver fresh baked pastries daily for an extra touch of sweetness to start the day.

Amtrak has also worked to elevate the caliber of food and beverages for its customers at Amtrak’s Moynihan Train Hall Metropolitan Lounge, through new café menus on the Northeast Corridor, and most recently at other Amtrak Metropolitan Lounges through its food and beverage partner, Aramark.

To further enhance the travel experience so that more customers can enjoy these new dining amenities, the Amtrak Bidup program allows already ticketed Acela customers to bid on an upgrade to First Class, space and availability permitting.

For More Information

Jen Flanagan
Lead Public Relations Specialist

About Amtrak®

For more than 50 years, Amtrak has connected America and modernized train travel. Offering a safe, environmentally efficient way to reach more than 500 destinations across 46 states and parts of Canada, Amtrak provides travelers with an experience that sets a new standard. Book travel, check train status, access your eTicket and more through the Amtrak app. Learn more at and connect with us on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and LinkedIn.


About Starr Restaurants

Founded in 1995 by Stephen Starr, Philadelphia‐based Starr Restaurants is one of the largest multi‐concept restaurant groups in the country with 35 properties across four markets. STARR has built a reputation by redefining expectations, merging culinary artistry with cutting edge design to create moments that surprise and delight. Over the last two decades, Starr has helped transform Philadelphia into one of the most vibrant food cities in the US. His trend-setting success, both in his hometown and in New York, Washington DC and Florida, has earned him multiple honors, including “Restaurateur of the Year” from both bon appétit and Zagat, and the highly coveted James Beard Award for “Outstanding Restaurateur.”