At the Old Homestead Steakhouse in New York City, you can experience America's most extravagant Thanksgiving — it might just set you back a bit.
The restaurant is offering a $76,000 Thanksgiving package that is so over-the-top, it's hard to imagine ever going back to a home-cooked meal. To put the cost in perspective, it's about $16,000 more than the median U.S. household income, according to the Census Bureau.
"What we focused on is using the most expensive ingredients that we possibly could find from all over the world," explains Marc Sherry, who co-owns the restaurant with his brother Greg. "Not only is this a culinary extravaganza, it's a cornucopia of inedible amenities."
The restaurant started offering the concept three years ago at a price of $35,000, but has added something different each year. A Thanksgiving dinner in 2015 featured a 2-carat emerald cut diamond engagement ring hidden in the stuffing at the base of the turkey, which one customer used to propose to his girlfriend at the restaurant.
This year's edition, which features everything from $475-per-pound imported Japanese Wagyu beef lollipops to gravy infused with $3,300 special reserve Pappy Van Winkle bourbon, is meant to impress up to 10 diners. But that's just the beginning.
Whipped sweet potatoes are topped with $1,600-per-ounce black caviar sourced from the Caspian Sea. The meal's traditional mashed potatoes boast $455-per-pound, imported Swedish moose cheese. Even the stuffing is a combination of $46 sourdough bread shipped in from the U.K., $54-per-pound foie gras and Wagyu beef.
The free-range, organic turkey, which costs $105 per pound, is basted with a $17-per-ounce Italian olive oil and seasoned with a blend of spices from the Middle East. Organic whole cranberries are mashed and infused with Grand Marnier and a touch of a $1,750 French Cabernet Sauvignon to complete the sauce.
For dessert, mixed wild berries are served with a vintage 1968 Cristal sabayon cream sauce.
After the meal, the Thanksgiving experience continues with non-edible exuberance. This year's package boasts four tickets to Hamilton, a $7,500 shopping spree on Fifth Avenue in NYC, a two-night stay at a Mandarin Oriental luxury suite overlooking Central Park and a watch from Swiss manufacturer Ulysse Nardin that costs more than $20,000. Transportation for the weekend also includes personal limousine service and a carriage ride through Central Park, complete with flowers and chocolates.
"When you spend $76,000 on a Thanksgiving dinner, you're not just buying dinner you're creating memories," Sherry says.
Last year, Old Homestead sold seven of its Thanksgiving packages at $50,000 each. So far this year, Sherry has sold two, and he's confident the clientele shares his appreciation for the tradition.
"I'm in love with the holiday. I'm in love with the creativity of a $76,000 dinner. I'm proud of my staff and the way they put it out," Sherry says, adding that his team spends a couple of months putting the experience together. "I love seeing the people buy this. I love seeing the expression on their faces."
Whether or not the facial expressions are induced by the cost of the whole thing remains to be seen, but for those more financially conscious patrons, Sherry notes the restaurant still offers a more traditional Thanksgiving meal for under $100 per person.
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