What happens when common foods meets haute cuisine?
The newest gastronomic trend seems to be repackaging everyday foods such as ramen, burgers, and even bottled water into gilded treats that can cost hundreds of times more than a common bowl of soup or dash of H20. What drives people to pay more than their month’s salaries for something that they’ll gobble up in minutes?
One motivation: the experience itself. Katy Casbarian, owner of Arnaud’s Restaurant in Louisiana in the US, said it’s less a matter of money than it is about celebrating milestones in a unique and memorable way. The one-of-a-kind experience of proposing marriage with the world’s most expensive dessert, or challenging your taste buds with rare ingredients, is, well, priceless for some people.
Chef Angelito Araneta Jr, creator of the Guinness World Record’s most expensive sushi (it costs a wallet-lightening $1,980) agrees.
“Life isn’t just measured by wealth,” said Araneta. “It is gauged by the ability of someone to spend their time [in a meaningful way]. Most of our clients are the 1% who knows this key to… life.”
For others, the chance to experience luxury is the real draw.
“Anything like gold gets people’s attention,” said Chef Jasper Mirabile, owner of Jasper’s Restaurant in Kansas City. “I mean, seriously, who doesn't want to eat gold once in your life?”
Inspired by a list of the world’s most expensive dishes, BBC Capital went on a mission to find the priciest things you can consume. Scroll through the images above to see 10 of the world’s most expensive food and drinks.