The Most Expensive Dinner Ever?

On November 11, Thomas Keller and Grant Achatz will team up to serve a 20-course dinner at Per Se—and charge $1,500 per guest. Achatz told Time Out New York what diners can expect to see on the menu: “Likely it will include a few Alinea and Keller classics, like the oysters and pearls from him and the hot potato-cold potato from me‚Ķwith a few new ones in the mix.”

Sounds like a pretty amazing meal, but the hefty price tag made blogger Catherine from Food, and Other Musings feel inclined to permanently boycott the two chefs’ restaurants:

Maybe there’s a charitable donation involved, maybe to a hunger organization or the American Cancer Society? you say.

Nope.

Just two greedy chefs.

I’m completely fucking disgusted and I’m never setting foot in any of their restaurants ever again.

But shortly after posting this tirade, Catherine received an email from Nick Kokonas, co-owner of Alinea, that convinced her to eat her words. She explains that the price point was chosen because the menu will include “top-notch caviar and other expensive ingredients,” as well as wine pairings, “many of which will be vintage champagnes and other library wines.” The price also includes tax, tip, and the costs of Keller’s new book, Under Pressure: Cooking Sous Vide, and Achatz’s cookbook, Alinea, which retail at $75 and $50, respectively, and will be given to each guest. The price will also make it possible to fly at least eight chefs to New York for additional kitchen support. With this in mind, the price seems a bit more reasonable. But seriously, three grand for dinner for two? Could any meal be worth that much?