Travel writing from a different perspective

July 13th - London, United Kingdom

London’s Most Expensive Food & Drink

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I am an eight-inch travel writer based in London. It's not always easy being a tiny traveller but it's seldom dull. This is a place for me to share my weird and wonderful travel stories with the rest of the world.

A look at some of London's most expensive food & drink items. £325 for literal 'crap coffee' - need I say more?

From jazz-endured smoked salmon to pre-digested coffee, people in London are prepared to pay big money for strange things. With pockets as small as mine, I usually like to highlight the best value activities and culinary treats but this time I’ve put together a list of London’s most expensive food and drink.

A sort of warning if you will, for what could happen to your bank balance if you start attempting to emulate the lifestyles of the rich and the famous.

Kopi Luwak ‘Crap Coffee’, £325, Bespoke Beverages

Civet Coffee

https://www.flickr.com/photos/pacificklaus/

If somebody told you that they had made a pot of coffee from cherry beans digested and defecated by an Indonesian weasel-like mammal called a civet, what would you do?

Pay £325 for a taste?

Probably not. But that’s how much it costs for a cup of the unfortunately nicknamed ‘crap coffee’.

Richard Hardwick, who provides London’s super-rich with the ultra-rare Kopi Luwak beans, reasons: “Life’s too short for bad coffee”.

Salvatore’s Legacy Cocktail, £5,500, London Playboy Club

 

If a casino club in London’s West End where croupiers are encouraged to dress up like bunnies sounds slightly unsavoury, just wait until you see the cocktail menu.

At a cute £5,500, master mixologist Salvatore Calabrese holds the record for the world’s most expensive cocktail. It’s a mixture of 1788 Clos de Griffier Vieux Cognac, 1770 Kummel Liqueur, 1860 Dobb Orange Curacao and 1900s Angostura Bitters.

To put things into context: the nations of Australia and America are both younger than the Kummel Liqueur used in the eponymously named ‘Salvatore’s Legacy’.

Buddha Jumps Over the Wall Soup, £108, Kai Mayfair

Considering the astronomical prices of some of the other items on this list, £108 for a soup exquisite enough to tempt Buddha out of his vow of vegetarianism almost sounds like a bargain.

The centuries old story is that a young monk, who was caught scrambling over a wall to get himself a spoonful of fragrant meat soup, exclaimed when questioned that it was so good even Buddha himself would jump over the wall to eat it.

Deemed unethical, Kai Mayfair no longer serve the soup with shark fin but if you book five days in advance you can still taste the other 30-or-so ingredients of this delicacy, which include whole abalone snails, Japanese flower mushroom, sea cucumber and dried scallops.

Glamburger, £1,100, Honky Tonk

What do you get if you cram all of the weird sounding delicacies from the menus of those restaurants you can’t afford into one edible golden leaf bun?

You get the ‘Glamburger’, which, quite frankly, sounds like a mess.

It’s a thousand-pound unholy amalgamation of Japanese Kobe beef, black truffle brie, Canadian lobster, Iranian saffron, Beluga caviar and a hickory smoked duck egg.

I’ll stick with the cheeseburger, thanks.

White Truffle Pizza, £100, Gordon Ramsey’s Maze

This one is a matter of perspective.

It’s either a delightful thin-crust pizza of onion puree, baby mozzarella, pancetta, fontina cheese, cep mushrooms, wild mizuna lettuce and rare Italian white truffle served at a restaurant owned by Britain’s most-decorated chef and holder of the most Michelin stars in the whole of London.

Or, it’s a hundred quid for a pizza without tomatoes made by a shouty, sweary Scotsman ‘off the TV’ who’s only into cooking because he didn’t make it as a footballer.

Smoked Salmon Fillet, £108, Hansen and Lydersen 

Salmon that is smoked with the aid of live jazz music.

Ole Hansen is Norweigan and his website goes to great lengths to conjure images of Viking longboats and valiant warriors. But with thick-rimmed glasses, a beard, a smokehouse in East London and a penchant for playing jazz piano to fish as it cures, it’s very difficult to picture anything other than a scene that was cut from Nathan Barley on account of it being ‘too unrealistic for satire’.


 

So there you have it. Six ways to blow a lot of money in a little amount of time. Have you tried any of London’s most expensive food? Was it any good? Let me know in the comments section below…

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