Seared foie gras, fresh truffles, black caviar – you can expect all these decadent staples and more to figure into the cuisine of this list. The restaurants below pedal not just in the finest ingredients a chef can buy, but the best chefs a kitchen can pay, the most luxurious settings a patron can hope for, and the most unique experience a meal can offer. All this goes into justifying some truly astronomical prices, reserved only for those with pocketbooks deep as the earth’s mantle or nerves steely enough to place a week’s paycheck on a single meal.
Located in the basement of an office building, this humble space is actually host to the most expensive steakhouse in the world. It serves exclusively Kobe beef, a prized meat from cows in the Kobe region of Japan and requiring special treatment involving, among other things, regular massaging and sake. For the premium 1976 Chambolle Musigny Pierre Bouree seasonal taste, you’ll have to spend roughly $560.
Styled as a traditional tea ceremony house, Kitcho provides a modernized take on Japanese cuisine with offerings like boiled blue crab with vinegar jelly, sushi of barracuda, and field caviar with maitake mushrooms. This restaurant has earned three Michelin stars and is commonly considered one of the most beautiful in Japan. Meals prices start at $380, and a full 10-course meal requires $570.
One of the first (but not the last) luxury restaurants to attempt creating a multisensory experience for its patrons, Ultraviolet consists of 10 chairs surrounded by four bare walls. As diners enter the room, lights turn on to make the room come alive, transporting guests between simulations of a rainy day in Britain, autumn woods, or the French countryside as they go through their meal. Head chef Paul Pairet boasts the restaurant has the largest employee-to-patron ratio at three employees per guest. This likely explains why becoming one of those esteemed guests costs around $570.
The most expensive dining experience in the U.S. is the omakase restaurant run by the man who pioneered the haute sushi experience, Masa Takayama. You can find the spot hidden in the shops at Columbus Circle. If you’re let in, you’ll be face-to-face with several sushi chefs diligently working away on your meal, sometimes including Masa himself. No viewable menus exist at Masa, that’s the omakase experience. The chefs only cook whatever ingredients are available that day. Dining there will cost you a minimum of $595.
More than three times as expensive as the next most expensive restaurant in the world, Sublimotion firmly sits atop the throne of priciest meal in existence. Though chef Pauco Ranchero would prefer you think of it as the “cheapest life-changing experience anyone can have.” Located in the basement of Ibiza’s Hard Rock Cafe, Sublimotion consists of a table seating 12 people and a bare room. A combination of lights and VR, however, make the room come to life as the patrons begin their meal. Twenty five staff members, including cooks, illusionists, DJs, waiters, and craftsmen, work to create a dining experience that incorporates laser light shows, floating desserts, drinks that mix themselves, and virtual reality adventures. All together, it comes to an eye-popping minimum of $1,850.