Manhattan is the most expensive place to live in the United States. Brooklyn is the second. Queens is fifth. It should come as no surprise that New York’s restaurants and bars sell some of the most extravagant and extravagantly priced items anywhere in the world, but wow, I'm still kind of shocked. Here's our list of the 9 most expensive food and drink items in the city.
1. $350 Steak: Old Homestead Steakhouse
Old Homestead Steakhouse's Japanese Wagyu steak, which is a 12oz portion of A5 Kobe beef, costs$350 and requires a reservation in advance as the steakhouse can sell as many as 25 portions nightly! This sounds like an insane price for 12 ounces of meat, and it is—no doubt about that. But Japanese beef is rated on a 12 point scale that puts USDA prime meat at no higher than a 5, while A5 Wagyu ranges between an 8 and a 12, so this could be a real treat for the serious beef lover.
2. $600 Tasting Menu: Masa
Masa is famously New York’s most expensive restaurant, and their omakase menu complete with the white truffle Wagyu beef option will set you back a cool $600 before tax and tip—oh and any drinks that you’d like to order will cost you extra. Ridiculous, right? Well, after compiling this list, I’m not so sure. The price may be sky high, but at least you’re getting 20 to 25 courses of the sheerest luxe and refinement at a 3-Michelin-star restaurant. It’s the second cheapest item on this list and at least it’s a complete meal, which you can’t say for any of the others.
3. $666 Burger: 666 Burger
A satire of this city’s many overdressed hamburgers (666 Burger feels strongly that a burger should be about a bun, a patty, some cheese and nothing else) with a whiff of Occupy Wall Street thrown in for good measure, the Douche Burger is a Kobe patty with lobster, caviar, truffles, BBQ sauce made from the most expensive coffee in the world, and Gruyere cheese that’s been melted with the steam from boiled champagne. Oh, and it's all wrapped in gold leaf for good measure.
4. $1,000 Frittata: Norma's
With 10oz of caviar and 1lb of lobster, this frittata is the first item on our list to break into the four digits. Norma's Le Parker Meridien sells about 10-12 of the $1,000 Zillion Dollar Lobster Frittatas a year and the same number per month of the $100 version. No need to order in advance--Norma’s is always ready to make this famous dish!
5. $1,000 Pizza: Nino's
Nino's Bellissima Pizza comes topped with four types of caviar plus lobster tail, and must be ordered a few days in advance.
6. $1,000 Bagel: Westin Hotel
This obscenity comes with Goji berry-infused Riesling jelly with gold leaf and white truffle cream cheese. And it costs $1,000. ‘Nuff said.
7. $2,300 Hot Dog: 230 Fifth
The popular rooftop bar and lounge offers a $2,300 foot long hot dog made of wagyu beef dry-aged for 60 days, laced with black truffles, and placed on a brioche bun toasted with white truffle butter. It is then slathered with organic W Ketchup seasoned with saffron, Mustarde de Charroux imported from France, Vidalia onions caramelized in Dom Perignon Champagne and 100 year old balsamic vinegar, house made organic sauerkraut braised in Louis Roederer Cristal and inflected with rare platinum osetra caviar, relish from Gordy’s Pickle Jar, and finally a gold leaf for good measure. Call a few days in advance to reserve your dog.
8. $10,000 Martini: Algonquin Hotel Blue Bar
For $10,000 the good folks at the Algonquin Hotel’s Blue Bar will mix you what I’m sure is a very nice martini, but all those zeroes really have more to do with the customized diamond you have them put into the drink when you consult with the hotel’s in-house jeweler three days before. I suppose there are worse ways to propose to someone. Let’s just hope she (or he) doesn’t swallow the rock.
Ok, that’s quite enough pussyfooting around with the merely absurd. The prices we've seen so far may be shocking, but there’s something about that makes them seem like the kind of thing a Wall Street banker might buy to celebrate a massive bonus. Our final entry in this list are a different breed: this is Russian and/or Middle Eastern oil money kind of obscene.
9. $25,000 Sundae: Serendipity 3
First, there’s the blend of 28 different rare varieties of cacao, including 14 of the world’s most expensive kinds, that Serendipity 3 puts into this chocolate indulgence. Next there’s the requisite edible gold that adorns the sundae and lines the goblet it’s served in. More to the point, there’s also an 18-karat gold bracelet with a carat of diamonds at the bottom of the sundae, and you’ll be getting to it with a gold spoon decked out with white and chocolate diamonds both of which you’ll be taking home with you.