Michelin Guide UK 2021: The world's 15 most expensive Michelin-starred restaurants

The Staff Canteen

Ever wondered what the price of a gold-leaf coated steak at one of Salt Bae's outposts might buy you in one of the world's most recognised restaurants? 

If you are able to fork out vast sums for a restaurant meal, you are part of a small circle of diners privileged enough to do so. But price isn't everything. Nor is approval from the world's best-selling food guide, you might say - but it certainly helps. 

Chef's Pencil has collated a list of the 15 most expensive Michelin-starred restaurants around the world, according to the price of a tasting menu, ranging from $1,740 (£1,317) to the comparatively modest $527 (£399).

(Editor's note: Three restaurants are tied in the 6th spot, so the publication decided to place the following entry in 9th position)

1 - Sublimotion, Ibiza, Spain -  $1,740 (£1,317)

SubliMotion's underwater scene

Open since 2014, Sublimotion has been described by Veebrant as 'dining at its most surreal, futuristic, and thought-provoking.'

Helmed by double Michelin-starred chef Paco Roncero, the restaurant seats 12 diners a night. It combines food, art, and illusionism - through the use of projectors and wrap-around screens - to create a unique experience. The restaurant even uses VR headsets and its own unique 'music menu' to enhance the guest experience.

2 - Ultraviolet by Paul Pairet, Shanghai, China  - $1,422 (£1,076)

Ultraviolet's Interior

Soon to celebrate its tenth year,,Ultraviolet is described in the Michelin Guide as a 'multi-sensory experience' at a secret location, combining a 20-course meal with lights, sounds and scents.

This three-Michelin-starred restaurant seats 10 diners a night and takes them on an 'interactive culinary journey.'

3 - Kitcho Arashiyama Honten, Kyoto, Japan - $910 (£689)

Kitcho's Interior

The Kyoto Kitcho Arashiyama serves amazingly prepared Japanese haute cuisine which originates centuries ago in the simple meals served at Japanese tea ceremonies, but later it evolved into an elaborate dining style popular among aristocratic circles. 

Since it opened in 1948, Kyoto Kitcho has sought to take this traditional style and push it to perfection, using seasonal ingredients served in carefully chosen vessels and arranged with utmost care.

4 - Azabu Kadowaki, Tokyo, Japan - $825 (£624.6)

Azabu Kadowaki's Interior
©Azabu Kadowaki

Azabu Kadowaki was awarded three Michelin stars in 2020 - eleven years after it opened, in 2009, and after more than ten years with two stars. The chef-owner Toshiya Kadowaki is described by The Michelin Guide as 'pioneering a future Japanese cuisine with his refined sensibilities, which refuse to be categorised.' 

5 - Masa, New York, USA - $800 (£605.7

Launched in 2005, Masa was awarded three Michelin stars in 2009.

According to The Michelin guide, 'everything [in the restaurant] carries a certain weight, beginning with the heavy wooden door and carrying through to the bill.' The restaurant prides itself on a simple design and décor that gives focus to the food.

6 (tie) - Restaurant Joël Robuchon, Tokyo, Japan $637 (£482.3)

Joël Robuchon's interior
©Joël Robuchon

Restaurant Joël Robuchon is a three Michelin-starred French restaurant in Tokyo. Joël Robuchon, the celebrated French culinary master who passed away in 2018 was hailed as 'the chef of the 20th century and as a leader of modern French gastronomy,' and his legacy lives on through his restaurants around the world. 

6 (tie) - Kikunoi Honten, Kyoto, Japan - $637 (£482.3)

Kikunoi Honten's Entrance

Soon to celebrate 110 years since it opened in 1912, Kikunoi Honten is a three-Michelin-starred restaurant in a beautiful traditional location in Kyoto. Considered by many to be one of the most famous Japanese cuisine restaurants the world over, Kikunoi was established by the grandfather of the current (and third-generation) chef Yoshihiro Murata.

6 (tie) - Gion Maruyama, Kyoto, Japan $637 (£482.3)

Gion Maruyama's Exterior

Open since 1988, Gion Maruyama is a two-Michelin-starred restaurant that focuses on the traditional culture of Japanese cuisine. It prides itself on showcasing the best seasonal produce that Kyoto has to offer, resulting in to an ever-changing menu of seasonal dishes.

9 - Guy Savoy, Paris, France - $614 (£464.9)

Guy Savoy's Interior

Guy Savoy opened his first place in the French capital in 1980 and has been at the Monnaie de Paris – the Paris Mint – since 2015.

The restaurant focuses on flavour which leads to many unique dishes and, for those worried about the price, one table every lunch service is reserved for (relatively) less wealthy clientele who can choose three courses for €130 ($145).

10 - Piazza Duomo, Alba, Italy - $580 (£439.1)

The Pink Room at Piazza Duomo
©Lido Vannucchi/Piazza Duomo

Opened in 2005, the Michelin Guide describes it as a 'gourmet atelier' and says that 'chef Enrico Crippa celebrates the Langhe region to the full while using aesthetics and meticulous techniques that are 100 percent Japanese.' Guests are invited to try taste of Piedmont, one of the finest food and wine regions in the world.

11 - Ciel Bleu, Amsterdam, the Netherlands - $574 (£434.6)

Ciel Bleu's Interior

Set on the 23rd floor of Amsterdam’s Hotel Okura, Ciel Bleu has panoramic views of the Amsterdam skyline.

The two-Michelin-starred restaurant serves the world's best produce: oysters from Brittany, North Sea sole and even Japanese wagyu. 

12 - Alchemist, Copenhagen, Denmark - $560 (£424)

The planetarium dome, inside of Alchemist

The second iteration of the Alchemist, which first opened in 2015 and relocated to a new site in 2018, is designed to be arresting, with large two-ton doors of hand-sculpted bronze guarding it. But once inside, according to Vanity fair, it is 'a breathtakingly expensive, three-story space that, with its several rooms, 50 courses, and at least one dancer clad in LED lights and bearing rainbow-coloured seahorse popsicles, promises an experience rather than mere dinner.'

13 -L'Arpège, Paris, France - $533 (£403.5)

Arpege's basement dining area 

L'Arpège, launched by celebrated French chef and star of Chef's Table Alain Passard in 1986, is a restaurant that focuses on "vegetable-based" cuisine. Vegetable-based doesn't mean that it is vegetarian necessarily just that the head chef, who is also a gardener, takes inspiration for each of its three-Michelin-starred meals from the vegetables grown in the garden used by the restaurant.

14 - Forum, Hong Kong $530 (£401.3)

Forum's Exterior (left) Interior (right)

Opened in 1977, the Forum restaurant is a three-Michelin-starred tucked away in an unassuming Hong Kong neighbourhood. While the outside may not look as expected for such a high-class restaurant, the interior is stunning and fits its status. 

15 -  Hélène Darroze at The Connaught $527 (£399)

The chefs table at Hélène Darroze at the Connaught

Opened in 2009, Hélène Darroze at the Connaught is a three-Michelin-starred restaurant that the Michelin Guide describes as a sign 'that The Connaught isn’t afraid of moving forward.' Since it was revamped in 2019, it adds, 'the room is now more feminine and less formal, considerably warmer and more relaxing.'

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The Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 16th December 2021

Michelin Guide UK 2021: The world's 15 most expensive Michelin-starred restaurants