O Ya, Boston
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11 of the Most Expensive Restaurants in America

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O Ya, Boston
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Rich Foods

Splurging on a good restaurant typically means ordering the special and some drinks. But America's most elite fine-dining restaurants take decadence to a whole other level, serving up meticulously thoughtful service and mysteriously delicious dishes. If you're looking for a culinary experience you'll never forget — or, at least, that your bank account will never forget — check out of some of America's most expensive restaurants.

Related: 27 of the Most Expensive Steaks You Can Order

Masa, New York City
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Masa | New York City

Masa serves sushi for lunch and dinner at a flat rate of $595 per person, not including drinks and tax. The menu changes regularly at this 26-seat restaurant, but that doesn't really matter, considering chef Masayoshi Takayama chooses what diners will eat each night. But many argue Masa is worth the price — The New York Times once dubbed it the "city's greatest sushi restaurant," and Travel + Leisure said diners will be "transported to an ethereal realm where chef Masa creates one of the premier dining experiences in the world." If you do visit Masa, don't try to tip; gratuity is included in the bill.

Joël Robuchon, Las Vegas
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Joël Robuchon | Las Vegas

Named after and founded by the late chef Joël Robuchon, this French restaurant serves the most expensive dinner in a city where decadence is the guiding ethos. Awarded three Michelin stars in 2008 and 2009, Joël Robuchon is known for its tapas-style dining, opulent interior design, and meticulous approach to classic French cuisine. Many diners praise the bread cart, with one Yelp reviewer writing she was in "awe" after enjoying "saffron brioche, fluffy milk bread, a gruyere puff, and even a mini croissant with their salted, creamy, imported French butter." Prices range at Joël Robuchon, but expect a tasting-menu dinner for two to cost about $1,100, after tax, tips, and drinks.

Eleven Madison Park, New York City
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Eleven Madison Park | New York City

With three Michelin stars and four stars from The New York Times, Eleven Madison Park has no shortage of clout in the fine-dining world. This Manhattan restaurant used to feature a marathon 25-course tasting menu, paired with waiters who'd perform card tricks and tell tales of old New York City. But after a conceptual redesign in 2016, Eleven Madison Park began focusing more on creating an intimate, conversational atmosphere, with a new menu that represents a "streamlined return to European classicism," as The New York Times wrote. Dinner here costs about $300 per person, not including drinks. But, as one Google reviewer noted, "you do not come to Eleven Madison Park for dinner — this is an experience."

The French Laundry, Yountville, California
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The French Laundry | Yountville, California

As the first Bay Area restaurant to get three Michelin Stars, The French Laundry has been a regional star in the restaurant world since 1994, serving fine French cuisine on two tasting menus that change daily. Dinner for two — which might include dishes such as Royal Ossetra Caviar, Wolfe Ranch White Quail, and Sweet Butter Poached Nova Scotia Lobster, to name a few — can last several hours and cost about $750, not including tip or drinks. After finishing a $10 million renovation in 2017, The French Laundry's "dishes are more exciting," the San Francisco Chronicle wrote, "and the service staff under longtime manager Michael Minnillo is reinvigorated."

Alinea, Chicago
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Alinea | Chicago

Alinea is not a restaurant — "at least, not in a conventional sense," its website says. That didn't stop Alinea from ranking 37th on the World's 50 Best Restaurants list in 2019, or, in 2017, becoming the first Chicago restaurant to get three Michelin stars. If you ask those who've paid $385 for a 12- to 16-course dinner at Alinea (the most expensive option), they might say dinner here is something like an interactive magic show — decorative objects around the room turn out to be edible, waiters inflate taffy candy with helium, and diners are asked to tour the kitchen, only to find the dining room has transformed when they return. "I feel that we have to perform in a theatrical manner; it has become our personality," chef Grant Achatz told the Chicago Tribune.

Saison, San Francisco
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Saison | San Francisco

Awarded three Michelin stars in 2014, Saison is a modern American restaurant that emphasizes wood-fired cooking and locally sourced ingredients. "We work with a small group of fisherman, hunters, gatherers, ranchers, and farmers to find and follow microclimates that produce specific tastes from wild foods," the restaurant's website says. For all that hard work, diners pay $298 for a multicourse dinner in the main dining room, with dishes ranging from uni to halibut, and bison to wood-smoked vegetables. "This isn't a pretentious place," one Yelp reviewer wrote. "You feel like you're in someone's home and are welcomed with lots of smiles and warmth."

Related: 20 Free and Cheap Things to Do in San Francisco

Vespertine, Culver City, California
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Vespertine | Culver City, California

Vespertine bills itself as "a gastronomical experience seeking to disrupt the course of the modern restaurant." This description, according to most reviews, rings true of both the food and the physical space, which are often described as extraterrestrial, or like nothing else diners have ever seen. The food here is virtually unrecognizable, presented in strange, sculpted containers, and it's often unclear what's edible and what's not. But don't let that — or the $275-per-person price tag — throw you off, because the late legendary food writer Jonathan Gold of the Los Angeles Times once called Vespertine the city's best restaurant, though he added that the strange experience will "drive many of you insane."

Pineapple and Pearls, Washington, D.C.
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Pineapple and Pearls | Washington, D.C.

Shortly after Pineapple and Pearls opened on Capitol Hill in 2016, longtime Washington Post food critic Tom Sietsema called it "a superlative restaurant — dare I say world-class? — and worthy of as many stars as I can give." Other reviewers tend to agree that the $325-per-person cost, which includes approximately nine courses, drinks, tax, and tip, is well worth it. As one Yelp reviewer noted, the dishes at this Michelin 2-star restaurant are inspired by a variety of cuisines: "One looking for a consistent theme or a certain 'flow' in fine dining may be disappointed, but keep an open mind and you will be pleasantly surprised."

Victoria & Albert's, Lake Buena Vista, Florida
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Victoria & Albert's | Lake Buena Vista, Florida

This AAA Five Diamond Award-winning restaurant might be on the Walt Disney World campus, but it's definitely more of a grown-up excursion, as evidenced by the 10-and-older age restriction and formal dress code. Victoria & Albert's serves modern American cuisine with top-notch ingredients, such as "truffles from Italy, fresh herbs from Ohio, beef from Japan, poulet rouge from North Carolina, and the finest caviar from around the world," as the restaurant website says. The most expensive dinner option costs $250 per person, not including drinks, tax, or tip. Many diners praise the seasonal dishes, made with ingredients selected that same day from local markets.

O Ya, Boston
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O Ya | Boston

The motto behind one of Boston's most beloved Japanese restaurants, o ya, has long been "Do it right, or don't do it at all," co-founder Nancy Cushman once wrote. And, by all accounts, Nancy and her husband Tim Cushman did it right: The restaurant has been so successful over the past decade that the Cushmans opened sister locations in New York City and Mexico City. At the Boston spot, diners can enjoy 24 rotating courses on the "grand" tasting menu, which at $285 is likely one of the most expensive in the city.

The Restaurant at Meadowood, St. Helena, California
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The Restaurant at Meadowood | St. Helena, California

Everything about The Restaurant at Meadowood, which is within a luxury resort, "exudes California-style wealth and comfort, from those cottages dotting the verdant Napa hills to the front lounge's stone fireplace," the Michelin Guide says. Of course, it was mainly the food, not the ambiance, that inspired Michelin to give this modern American restaurant a coveted 3-star rating. Don't bother trying to look up Meadowood's menu; there is none. Instead, the staff, guided by chef Christopher Kostow, finds out the likes and dislikes of each dinner party and crafts a specific menu for each table — all for about $750 for two people, after drinks, tax, and tip.