“Waiter, give me some steamed Botan-ebi, and a gargouillou of young vegetables with the side of chicken with milk perfume. Oh and match it with a nice Petrus wine.” That’s my impression of what it must be like in a fancy restaurant ordering food so expensive that you would need to mortgage your home, your car, your suit, and your cat’s litter of kittens, just to afford the appetizers. In order to get the main courses, you would need to have the GDP of Tanzania to make it past the first course and the combined budget of all Michael Bay films in order to get to dessert. That’s not including the tip, which would put you in serious credit card debt.
They’re not that expensive, but compared to a regular night out dining with family and friends, the bill could end up being extremely high, especially when you’re going as part of a large group. It might not be as much as the GDP of Tanzania, but for a simple meal it can be expensive, and if you want some fancy wines to go with it, the price could easily double.
So let’s put on our monocles and top hats and fancy suits and pretend we’re richer than we actually are and want to actually dine out at the fancy places on our following list. Here are 15 restaurants that not only will make your taste buds dance, but also break your bank account in the process.
15. Schloss Shauenstein, Furstenau, Switzerland
First on our list is a majestic 18th century castle in the middle of the beautiful Swiss Alps. Not only is the view and the scenery absolutely gorgeous, but also the food there is extra fancy. With a world class kitchen and access to some very choice ingredients, the head chef, Andreas Caminada, can turn them into delicacies that would be worthy of an 18th century king who’s probably sick in the head due to some degenerative disease or other factors that we can’t talk about. The fact that Andreas Caminada is a 3-star Michelin Chef also makes the whole place even more appealing.
14. Michel Bras Toya, Lake Toya, Japan
Japan is a place that’s renowned for their cuisine and their world-class food presentation skills. Michel Bras Toya has a gorgeous view of the volcanic caldera Lake Toya in Japan. While you enjoy the view, you can be treated to a lot of fine cuisine courtesy of the 2 star Michelin chef in charge. This will only set you back by a measly 287$ per person for their ‘discovery and nature’ menu. I have no idea how they came up with that menu name, but the menu selection of grilled duck foie gras and marrow pan fried celtuce with yuba and black truffle vinaigrette sound delicious if I actually knew what those things are.
13. Alain Ducasse at the Dorchester, London, UK
So after going to Switzerland and Japan, now we are on our way to another 3-star Michelin restaurant that is in the heart of London. It isn’t an English cooking joint; it’s a French restaurant, because that’s what England is famous for, having everything BUT English cooking. It has gorgeous interior decoration, and a six course tasting menu that only costs 289$ per person. That’s just the tasting course. It doesn’t include the wine pairing or other things that aren’t too important in dinging. Not expensive at all, and hey… at least they got some cool décor.
12. Hotel de Ville, Crissier, Switzerland
So after going to London for some French cuisine, we go back to Switzerland for some more French cuisine, because you cannot have enough fine dining no matter where you live. Whether it’s in England, Switzerland, or Japan, no one can get enough French cuisine.
The Hotel de Ville, in Crissier in Switzerland was opened by the late 3-star Michelin Chef Benoit and his wife Brigitte Violier, who have a great reputation of awesome multi-course meals that start at 318$ per person, but could easily run up to 400$. Not a bad way to throw away an entire month’s salary if you’re looking to splurge.
11. Ithaa Undersea Restaurant, Maldives
So one thing we noticed about a lot of these restaurants is that they have some really gorgeous views. Lake Toya has you looking right into a volcanic caldera (which is the top part of an inactive volcano), Schloss Shauenstein is in the middle of the Swiss Alps. But all these places are at high altitudes. What about under the sea?
Well, Ithaa Undersea Restaurant is, as the name states, under the sea. It gives you a glorious view of the Indian Ocean and the fish swimming around you. I wonder just what their seafood menu is like. I want to know because if I ever eat there, I want the fish around me to recoil in horror to see that I am eating their relatives as I cackle menacingly while everyone looks at me funny and wonder how I even got in there. They probably have a right to expect manners, with a price tag of 320$ per person, you need to have money to spend if you’re going there.
10. Per Se, New York City, USA
I don’t know if this the most expensive place, per se. Now that that joke is out of the way, let’s move on to the serious review of the place, but I haven’t actually been there, because I don’t have the minimum of 325$ to eat there (although people actually spends an average of 851$). I have other addictions to feed other than my non-existent addiction to fine dining. However if I was in New York City, I would go there if I was in the mood to blow up my food budget for the next fifteen years. According to various restaurant magazines, they rated the place as the 6th best restaurant in the world in 2015.
9. Aragawa, Tokyo, Japan
Going back to Japan for yet another meal, we take a break from all that fancy French cuisine and head over to the meat lover’s paradise at Aragaway in Japan. A place that has the finest cuts of the most expensive meat on the planet. Wagyu beef is a Japanese beef that is hard to get anywhere outside of the country, and the absolute premium cuts of meat are so expensive that it makes the price tag of 370$ per person for a steak understandable… if you were really, really interested in clogging your arteries with the finest available.
Or maybe not… Wagyu beef actually has a very high percentage of Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids due to the genetic predisposition towards having far more monounsaturated fat than your typical cow. Which is why it’s so valuable and the texture it imparts is absolutely amazing, or so I heard. I’m not a millionaire, I haven’t eaten any, yet.
8. Maison Pic, Drome, France
So after we’ve consumed some choice Japanese beef, our addiction towards French cuisine continues when we return to France for some of that unforgettable French food. What makes this one so special? This one is headed by Chef Anne-Sophie Pic, one of the few female 3-star Michelin Star chefs. Sexist people say that a woman’s place is in the kitchen, but what they will not tell you is that professional kitchens are almost entirely male dominated jobs. So let’s take one for feminism while we dig into a nine course meal that includes Mediterranean rouget in a saffron broth followed by marinated venison in sake lees. If they sound too good to be cheap, you’re right. They cost a mere 445$ per person, and you’ll leave a full, happy person!
7. Masa, New York, USA
So after returning from France to the US, we clearly have missed the taste of Japanese cooking and we take a detour to Masa in New York City. This one is unusual in that while Japanese cooks and cuisine normally work extremely hard on presentation, this one forgoes that part and makes up for it by really hitting hard with the flavor. The place is legendary among the New York fine dining scene, and with a price tag of 450 to 600$ per person, it’ll make your taste buds explode and burn a hole in your pocket, too.
6. Restaurant Le Meurice, Paris, France
Ahh yes! France, once again we return to Paris, gay Paree as it was called (before the term gay meant what it means today) and what better way to enjoy French food than in a place that absolutely stinks of Frenchness. More so than their garlic infused baguettes and overuse of perfume. The place is designed to look exactly like an 18th century Versailles palace, complete with intricate wall decorations and chandeliers, which makes for the price tag of around 509$ per person for their taste style menus almost worth it (due to the cost of having to have built the place to begin with).
5. Ultraviolet, Shanghai, China
So our culinary adventure takes us to a place that is new to the world of fine dining… China. China is now a big hit with their Utraviolet restaurant in Shanghai. The big selling point? It’s not the 20 course meal, it’s the entire experience. They have an entire multi-sensory atmosphere of music, videos, scents, and simulations. They make absolutely sure that all of your senses are stimulated during the entire experience, which should make the 598$ price tag a little more bearable. The best part is that they apparently do their best to make sure that their guests can’t be spoiled by anything they read online since they rotate the experiences and the dishes quite frequently.
4. Kitcho, Kyoto, Japan
After China, we return back to good old Japan for another touch of Japanese fine dining. Unlike the previous places that we have talked about, this one is not only quite Japanese, but it also has a specific, very Japanese, way of dining called Kaiseki, which involves the epitome of the most carefully selected Japanese cuisine that is supposed to showcase not only the incredible Japanese skill of presentation, but also show the colors of the seasons, with seasonal and local ingredients used, such as abalone and tofu with sea urchin. With a price tag of around 609$ per person, it is not a cheap experience.
3. Le Pre Catelan, Paris, France
We return to France again, because we can’t get enough of it. No one can get enough of France. I mean it’s no wonder the French are stereotyped as carrying baguettes and drinking fancy wine and doing all sorts of culinary stuff. This place is very, very unusual. Most fancy restaurants generally offer fixed options and multi-course meals and other stuff like that. Le Pre Catelan is different in that it offers everything a la carte… you know, like a regular restaurant. So if you want to have some duck foie gras with lobster with French caviar and a lemon meringue dessert, you’ll be looking at items that cost 117 to 170 dollars each, making the price of a full meal easily 500+ dollars, not including the wine or other such beverage.
2. Joel Robuchon, Las Vegas, USA
So after taking another trip in France, we want to return to the good ol’ USA. Except we aren’t going to New York. No… we want more than just food, we want showgirls and Elvis, and gambling and other cool stuff. What better place to do all of these things than Las Vegas, Nevada. But all that gambling is making us hungry again, and we just won big at the blackjack tables and we don’t feel like going to some casual dining place like the peasants. We want to eat and enjoy big! So we head off to the Joel Robuchon, a place where we can enjoy some of the finest dining in all of the USA for 640$ a person. It’s expensive as all heck, but with our winnings, that is chump change.
1. SubliMotion, Ibiza, Spain
So we’ve gone to Ibiza (whooa, we’re gonna have a party!… if you get the reference, then congratulations, you were alive and conscious in the late 90s), and instead of going out for drinks and weird adventures, you want to have the fanciest 20-course meal imaginable, and so you go to the SubliMotion restaurant. The place that is so unbelievably expensive that you might as well spend your entire holiday budget because you could be looking to 1757$ per person for this 20-course feast that’ll probably leave you crying at the loss of such money and wishing that you had gone to McDonald’s instead.
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