In the city where money is no object, dropping a few hundred (if not thousands) on a Saturday night dinner is par for the course in and around Los Angeles. So where are these fancy dancy dinners being held? Mostly, very close to you. Los Angeles has become the west coast mecca for fine-dining, where renowned celebrity chefs have scooped up prime real estate in order to showcase some the best world-class dishes money can buy. And let’s not forget the special attention given towards the award-winning wine selections made available to go hand and hand with these meals.
Whether you are in search of the best sushi or steak, or looking to see and be seen, L.A. has the most-expensive restaurants west of the Mississippi. Quite frankly, they are also the best. The moment you strike it big, or cash in that winning lottery ticket, make sure to phone in a reservation to one of these hot-spots and celebrate just like Hollywood royalty.
218 North Rodeo Drive
Beverly Hills, CA 90210
For quite some time Urasawa was not only the most expensive restaurant in Los Angeles, but the second in the entire country. With average checks circling north of $1,000 — the Japanese restaurant and sushi bar with master chef Hiroyuki Urasawa, caters to only ten guests each night. So what makes Urasawa so luxurious? That would be a combination of the of the intimate dining, utter-secrecy, “ten-second rule” and the 30-course (yes, thirty!) omakase menu that changes daily. Defined by many as the “ultimate sushi experience,” Urasawa never disappoints especially those with a fondness for toro and wagyu. Hidden on Rodeo Drive, don’t expect to just drop-in or snap too many pictures on Instagram. Once you find the location, you’ll need to take the elevator to enter the famous “curtained room” where servers will kindly ask you to refrain from snapping photographs. Starting at $395 per person
5955 Melrose Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90038
It’s a tell-tale sign when a restaurant continues to have that warm buzz surrounding itself even ten years later. You instantly know it has to be exceptional. Providence’s “seafood-centric, multi-course tasting menus center on reverence for world-class fish cookery that reinforces the principles of sustainability and seasonality.” As a James Beard Award nominee, Executive Chef and Co-Owner, Michael Cimarusti, has an extensive knowledge of seafood and a history with purveyors which becomes apparent the moment your first course arrives. Highlights from the Providence Chef’s Menu include: Sashimi with calabrian chiles, lemon and mint; Uni in Yuzu with caviar and soy milk; New Zealand Abalone with buckwheat and dashi butter; A5 Wagyu with pickled bitter greens, caramelized onion puree, and carrots; Artisanal Cheeses and Hachiya Persimmon with whiskey, mini and coco. $210 per person / $305 with wine pairing
Wolfgang Puck at Hotel Bel-Air
701 Stone Canyon Road
Los Angeles, CA 90077
The godfather of celebrity chefs, Wolfgang Puck, leads the round-up with three of the most-expensive (and most-impressive) dining experiences on this list. Embracing a healthy-California cuisine that the southland is known for, Wolfgang Puck at Hotel Bel-Air incorporates only the freshest ingredients into his innovative dishes. Guests have the option of either taking advantage of a special five- or seven-course seasonal tasting menu and wine pairings, or take the liberty to order a la carte directly off of the menu. Some of the most decadent items currently gracing the menu are: Caviar; Alba White Truffles with choice of fresh tagliatelle, risotto or pizza; Slow Braised Beef Cheeks with creamed kale, toasted barley, Tokyo turnips and horseradish gremoulata; and a Prime 32oz Porterhouse for Two with truffle hollandaise.
212 South Beverly Drive
Beverly Hills, CA 90212
One of the culinary highlights of 2014 was welcoming Chef Curtis Stone to Los Angeles with open arms. There had been murmurs circling about how wonderful his new spot, Maude, was going to be, however no one knew it was going to be this good. The hands-on Stone dazz.es guests with seasonal tasting menus that change one key ingredient from month-to-month in a tiny seven table, twenty-five seat eatery. Serving nine-courses nightly which highlight the freshest ingredients, Maude offers an intimate chef’s table experience as well. Lasting roughly 2.5 hours, the dining experience features a price which changes from month-to-month and is determined by market price. For 2015, diners can expect dishes prepared to showcase: pomegranate, parsnip, fennel, asparagus, almond, avocado, chili, fig, apples and truffles. Starting at $100 per person
CUT by Wolfgang Puck
9500 Wilshire Boulevard
Beverly Hills, CA 90212
Nestled inside the iconic Beverly Wilshire, Beverly Hills (A Four Seasons Hotel.) is CUT by Wolfgang Puck. In simplest terms, CUT is an honest to goodness game-changer. Referred to as one of the top three steakhouses in the world, upon arrival prepare to be wowed. Choose from a selection of entrees grilled over hard wood and charcoal then finished under a 1200 degree broiler such, or seafood caught fresh daily. “Tasting of New York Sirloin” is always a top-choice with cuts of American Wagyu from Snake River Farms, U.S.D.A. PRIME Dry Aged 35 Days, and Japanese 100% Wagyu Beef from Miyazaki Prefecture, Kyushu. Known to regularly frequent his establishments, don’t be surprised if mid-meal a friendly Puck comes by your table to personally greet you and the other guests.
1104 Wilshire Boulevard
Santa Monica, CA 90401
There seems to be an ongoing trend and common link between expensive restaurants and pre-fixe tasting menus as of late. Josiah Citrin’s uber-chic traditional French restaurant also features a “season-driven” selection that has been taking Santa Monica by storm for over a decade. Chef de Cuisine Ken Takayama, has developed a multi-course menu including dishes such as: Rosemary Scented Sunchoke Veloute with sunchoke chips and whipped black truffle for the first course; and a Chanterelle Crusted Dover Sole served with butternut squash, chanterelle mushrooms, hazelnuts, yellow wine sauce prepared tableside. Rounding out the evening selection is a Warm Dulcey Ganache Tart with praline chantilly and dark chocolate ice cream. Wine pairing and other supplements are offered as well upon request. Starting at $135 per person
Mastro’s Ocean Club
18412 Pacific Coast Highway
Malibu, CA 90265
Off the beaten path, we take you to the beautiful shores of Malibu, where Mastro’s Ocean Club is serving up a very sophisticated menu with old-school charm. Combined with unparalleled views of the Pacific, dining during sunset makes it worth every penny to break out that Centurion black card. Standout dishes include a selection of appetizers, sushi, soups & salads; steaks & chops, and the freshest seafood imaginable for your dining pleasure. However the superstar is without a doubt, Mastro’s signature Seafood Tower. Create your own selection of fresh, chilled shellfish presented on an iced seafood tower brought right to your table. Satisfy your land and sea craving with a beautiful, perfectly cooked filet and a live 2 – 6 lbs. live Maine Lobster, Alaskan King Crab Legs, or two 7oz Twin Lobster Tails.
900 West Olympic Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90015
High above the dancing neon lights of downtown Los Angeles and L.A. Live, overlooking the city with unobstructed views of the Hollywood Hills, legendary chef and restaurateur Wolfgang Puck is serving his “modern interpretation of traditional Chinese cuisine.” Clearly reflecting his love for time spent in the Far East, every flavor of every bite is sinfully delicious. When people mention WP24 two words immediately come to mind: Peking Duck. The Whole Roasted Duckling “Peking Style” with Traditional Garnishes is the restaurant’s signature dish and the presentation is mind-blowing. Guests also highly-favor the “Angry” Two-Pound Live Maine Lobster which is another Instagram superstar. With spicy szechuan chilies, fried garlic, scallions, and black bean dust, it’s no wonder this mouth-watering crustacean is a bit ornery. The restaurant also serves a 3- and 4-course tasting menu, with 6- and 10-courses available upon request. Starting at $110 per person