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Oct 18, 2010 02:34 PM

What is the most expensive restaurant in the Bay Area?

Some coworkers and I were discussing over lunch what the most expensive restaurant in the Bay Area is? A couple of us thought French Laundry but some claim there must be places more expensive than FL. Couldn't come to any conclusion so thought I'd consult more knowledgeable folks.

As basis for comparison, we're just talking what one person can spend on food alone, i.e. excluding the options of buying a $800 bottle of wine, etc.

Any ideas?

The French Laundry
6640 Washington Street, Yountville, CA 94599

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    1. TFL is almost certainly the most expensive.

      Manresa is $170 without wine without service, compared to TFL's $240 with tip. Manresa's $98 wine pairing is excellent, but with TFL you end up buying a few bottles.

      1. It's probably hard to beat TFL if your are comparing basic tasting menus. On the other hand, if you order a la carte at any place with an upscale caviar service that serves A5 beef, one person can probably spend $500-$1000 on food and be done with dinner in an hour.

        1 Reply
        1. re: nocharge

          COI is $135 with a $95 wine pairing, without tip.

          373 Broadway, San Francisco, CA 94133

        2. TFL is now $250

          I believe it's third most expensive in the US, behind Per Se (NYC's french laundry equivalent), and Masa in NYC

          Masa's Restaurant
          648 Bush Street, San Francisco, CA 94108

          4 Replies
          1. re: vulber

            Actually Urasawa in Beverly Hills has been charging $350 per person (food only) for quite some time now. A fantastic dining experience.

            1. re: J.L.

              The ever controversial but rarely talked about Sawa Sushi in Sunnyvale has a $350 (minimum) omakase of, according to the website at, "Unparalleled Variety, Pure Taste Enlightenment" of 25 courses (from what I understand, lots of giant cuts of sashimi splashed with various fusion style plating and sauces, and various cooked dishes) of which is the chef's attempt to get into the FL/Urasawa style realm beyond the nigiri and sashimi omakase (and he does crazy name rolls too nowadays it seems).

              Add a bottle (or two) of his high end sake offerings and the bill will easily top over $1000 for two.

              Urasawa would definitely be a better experience though.

              1. re: K K

                I also wonder how much one can possibly blow at Koi Palace by going crazy on the most expensive shark's fin, abalone, and live seafood from the tanks (Australian lobster, geoduck, etc.).

                Koi Palace Restaurant
                365 Gellert Blvd, Daly City, CA 94015

                1. re: vincentlo

                  Excellent point...considering they have VIP rooms and wine stashes of sour French grape bottles that can go up to $1K per, as well as that special dish Jade Green Lobster Meat Sauteed that's on the menu with a seasonal price as mentioned by hong_kong_foodie, costing $300 to $400


          2. TFL has a more expensive option if you book the private room, $3,500 for 10 people...but you get extras. A friend booked it for a family thing.

            So does TFL still add on supplemental costs for premium items? That can add up.