How posh are you? Are you fish knife posh? Do you play water polo riding swans? Or are you £500 cuppa posh? If so, then in London, you’ve got company. In a city of extremes, whether it’s unsustainable house prices, tube temperatures at 40 degrees or Beast From The East plunging them back down to Arctic levels, London pushes things to the extremes. And of course that’s true when it comes to food, it’s a city where we could viably write a guide to where to go and eat insects! So here are the most extreme restaurant prices in town, by the way I’m just borrowing your Amex. No reason…
Tea - £500
The Rubens at the Palace has blue blood running through its veins, not least because it’s literally slap bang opposite Buckingham Palace. But even the queen must be going ‘orf’ at the sight of diners knocking back bone china teacups filled with £500 a pot tea. The collaboration between The Rubens and specialist tea merchants PMD Tea gives guests a pot of fine, super-rare, Ceylon Golden Tips tea. Tea pluckers skilfully hand pick the tips of the small, succulent shoots at sunrise to ensure that it’s just right. The buds are then sun-dried on a velvet cloth, no expense spared, with the upmost care, turning the buds from silver to gold. Almost literally.
Omlette - £300
The Ritz, even the words conjure extravagance. Prince Charles celebrates his birthday here, Roger Moore and Jonny Depp used to hang out at the casino here, and it’s where Margaret Thatcher went to die. It’s also the place to come if the answer to ‘how do you like your eggs in the morning?’ is ‘with caviar, dah-ling’. The normal breakfast, a snip at forty quid, can be super-sized by adding on the £300 30g oscietre caviar omelette.
Kobe Beef - £1,000
Multi-million pound bonuses grow on trees in The City. Clearly there’s a cash forest growing under London’s biggest banks, and presumably it’s very dirty because they don’t let the cleaners anywhere near it. But the bankers who tend to these sprigs of fifties need somewhere to dispose of the deadwood, and they could do a lot worse than heading to SUSHISAMBA The City. And for just £1,000, diners at the sky high restaurant can enjoy a kilo of kobe beef. That’s just £1 per gram, which is around £50 a gram cheaper than bankers’ normal fare, and far kinder on the septum. The beef, enough for 5 diners, is served ishiyaki style, cooked at the table on a hot plate in true SUSHISAMBA style.
Cognac - £10,000 ONO
While M Restaurants can go toe-to-toe with SUSHISAMBA on the Kobe beef stakes, they also wear the crown for the most expensive cognac in town. Produced by Le Domaine de Rome de Bellegarde, one of the most prestigious French cognac houses, the 1894 L’Eveil des Sen is made of 4 eaux de vie, all aged over 70 years. And with only 67 bottles made, the unique blend is listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the most expensive 40ml measure ever bought, at £10,014. Available as a 10ml shot, or an entire decanter-worth, bring your chequebook.
Where: 2-3 Threadneedle Walk, 60 Threadneedle Street, London EC2R 8HP
Nearest station: Bank (0.2 miles)
Caterpillar Soup - £428
Remember the Hungry Caterpillar book? Turns out that it ends quite differently to how you remember; welcome to Royal China Club’s Caterpillar Soup. (Thankfully) misleadingly named, no caterpillars were hurt in the making of this soup, and in fact it’s made with rare herbs. Only found at altitude, and looking a little like a caterpillar, the herbs renders the soup super-special, though given it serves four you’d better get slurping…
Pizza - £200
If you’re shocked at the prices at your local pizza take-out, look away now. The Wellesley, in Knightsbridge, are serving a £200 pizza. That’s, like, the same as three Saturday night stuffed crust Domino’s margaritas… The pizza, topped with white truffle which has been specially truffled in lba, northern Italy and freshly flown in, has even scrimped on the tomato, with a creamy burrata base instead. Only available during truffle season (October, November sort of time), it’s worth starting to save for…
Cocktail - £5,000
Never have the words ‘your round’ struck such terror as at the American Bar at The Savoy, where this cocktail comes in at £5,000. Sure, the drink is made using 1858 Sazerac de Forge cognac, 1900s Peychaud’s Bitters and 1950s Pernod Absinthe, so you’re literally swallowing history, but it’ll still leave your bank balance with more of a hangover than you.