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Explainer: $25,000 sundae? 12 expensive eats

  • Image: Frozen Haute Chocolate
    Reuters
    Even in the midst of a recession, some restaurants cater to the tastes of the ultra-rich.

    From a $175 burger to an ice cream treat that can melt your bank account, check out some of the world's priciest menu items.

    Warning: These foods are not for the frugal.

    Video: Kathie Lee and Hoda talk pricey foods

  • The 12-inch Luxury Pizza

    Image: The 12-inch Luxury Pizza
    TODAY

    The 12-inch Luxury Pizza at Nino’s Bellissima in New York City costs a whopping $1,000, which breaks down to $125 a slice.

    The restaurant needs 24 hours' notice to create the pie because it is topped with six types of caviar, which have to be specially ordered.

    In addition, the pizza includes lobster, creme fraiche and chives.

  • La Madeline au Truffle

    Image: La Madeline au Truffle
    Knipschildt Chocolatier

    Two bucks might get you a chocolate bar at the drugstore, but you have to come with a lot more sugar for a taste of La Madeline au Truffle from Knipschildt Chocolatier in Norwalk, Conn.

    The chocolate truffles go for $250 a pop about $2,600 for a pound.

    The confection boasts high quality ingredients including French Valrhona chocolate, fresh cream, pure Italian truffle oil and French Perigord truffle, and is crafted through an arduous process.

  • Richard Nouveau burger

    Image: Richard Nouveau burger
    TODAY

    Can a burger break the bank? Not if you're dining off the dollar menu.

    But a couple of $175 Richard Nouveau burgers from the Wall Street Burger Shoppe in New York City might do the trick.

    This swanky sammy includes gold flakes, black truffles, seared foie gras and aged Gruyere cheese accompanying 10 ounces of Kobe beef.

  • Mac 'n' cheese

    Image: Mac 'n' cheese
    Melisse

    Forget that boxed blue stuff.

    If you've got money to burn, Melisse restaurant in Santa Monica, Calif., serves up a mac 'n' cheese that costs $95.

    The dish uses expensive white truffles, fresh tagliatelle and brown butter truffle froth.

    It's offered only during truffle season, from October through December.

  • Kobe beef steak

    Image: Kobe beef steak
    Aragawa

    Tokyo's Aragawa is one of the city's most famous — and expensive — restaurants.

    A serving of steak costs $368, and the price reflects the origins of the meat.

    The beef, commonly called Kobe, comes from the Tajima-ushi breed of Wagyu cattle and is considered a delicacy.

    But big bucks alone won't get you in the door at this restaurant, as seating is reserved for exclusive clientele.

  • Buddha Jumps Over the Wall soup

    Image: Buddha Jumps Over the Wall soup

    Kai Mayfair in London dubs itself the "home of the world's most expensive soup" for its $165 Buddha Jumps Over the Wall soup.

    The soup is made from shark fin — a controversial ingredient because shark finning is loathed by animal activists — Chinese mushrooms, sea cucumber, dried scallops, chicken, ginseng and gold.

    To order this dish, customers need to give the restaurant five days' notice.

  • Zillion Dollar Lobster Frittata

    Imgae: Zillion Dollar Lobster Frittata
    TODAY

    Looking for the breakfast of champions?

    You can drop $1,000 on the Zillion Dollar Lobster Frittata at Norma's at the Le Parker Meridien hotel in New York City.

    It has 10 ounces of Sevruga caviar, which can retail for $80 to $170 an ounce.

  • Chocolate Variation

    Image: Chocolate Variation

    Mezzaluna, a restaurant in Thailand, holds the title of serving one of the most expensive meals ever, at $30,000 a head, in 2007.

    The restaurant also boasts one of the priciest dessert menus in the world and includes the Chocolate Variation for $640.

    The dessert includes champagne sorbet made from Cristal, and a slice of chocolate cake with edible gold and Perigord truffle.

  • Sultan's Golden Cake

    Image: Sultan's Golden Cake

    If you're in the mood to be treated like royalty, the Ciragan Palace in Istanbul, Turkey, offers the Sultan's Golden Cake for the princely sum of $1,000.

    The dessert takes three days to make and has figs, quince, apricot and pears marinated in rum for two years.

    In addition, it's topped with caramel, black truffles and edible gold.

  • Steak-and-mushroom pie

    Image: Steak-and-mushroom pie

    Chef Spencer Burge of Fence Gate Inn in the U.K. created a steak-and-mushroom pie that sells for $12,500.

    It's made from Wagyu beef, matsutake mushrooms, black truffles and two bottles of 1982 Chateau Mouton Rothschild, worth $6,800.

  • Frozen Haute Chocolate

    Image: Frozen Haute Chocolate
    Reuters

    Serendipity 3 in New York City was known for its Golden Opulence ice cream sundae, which sets customer back a cool $1,000.

    But in 2007, owner Stephen Bruce set out to get a Guinness world record for most expensive dessert for the $25,000 Frozen Haute Chocolate.

    What makes it so pricey? It includes a blend of 28 cocoas, is infused with five grams of edible 23-karat gold and served in a goblet lined with edible gold.

    Customers even walk away with souvenirs — an 18-karat gold bracelet with diamonds and the gold and diamond-crusted spoon and goblet set.

  • Hot dog

    Image: World's most expensive hot dog
    Liz Steger
    Serendipity 3 is also famous for it's $69 foot-long frank — the world’s most expensive hot dog according to Guinness.

    It's served on a pretzel roll toasted in white truffle butter. The all-beef sausage is grilled in white truffle oil and topped with duck foie gras, caramelized Vidalia onions, heirloom tomato ketchup and Dijon mustard.

Video: Kathie Lee, Hoda talk pricey foods

  1. Transcript of: Kathie Lee, Hoda talk pricey foods

    GIFFORD: It was supposed to start raining, but it hasn't yet. It's coming, though, it's coming, Hoda woman.

    KOTB: It is coming. Look at all of this stuff we have gathered around.

    GIFFORD: We're going to tell you about it in a second.

    KATHIE LEE GIFFORD, co-host: First, I don't want to forget to say, my dear friends , the Joslyns ...

    HODA KOTB, co-host: Uh-huh.

    GIFFORD: ...are about to open the next -- a huge Titanic exhibit in Pigeon Forge , Tennessee , today.

    KOTB: Uh-huh. OK.

    GIFFORD: Regis is going to cut their ribbon. I just want to wish them all the best for it.

    KOTB: Good luck to them.

    GIFFORD: Plans to bring it to New York soon.

    KOTB: Ah, that's exciting.

    GIFFORD: Wouldn't you like to have the Titanic just sitting right there in the harbor.

    KOTB: Why wouldn't you.

    GIFFORD: That would be awesome.

    KOTB: All right.

    GIFFORD: God bless them, anyway.

    KOTB: We had some fun yesterday, you guys. If, OK. Here's the problem with Broadway , I think. A lot of women like to go and their husbands and boyfriends don't like to go.

    GIFFORD: They'd rather go to a baseball game or something, right.

    KOTB: Well, we have just solved your problem . It is called...

    GIFFORD: You owe us like crazy.

    KOTB: ..." Million Dollar Quartet ." This is a show that I guarantee -- there were more men in the audience, I think, than women.

    GIFFORD: You know what, it was fun to watch them. At one point, I pulled myself away from it long enough to really look at the audience.

    KOTB: Yeah.

    GIFFORD: Everybody was having the best time. My friend, Eric Schaeffer ...

    KOTB: Oh.

    GIFFORD: ...who has directed two of my shows, is the director. He's the one that won the Tony last year for best regional theater down at the Signature in Shirlington , Virginia .

    KOTB: This show has four incredible musicians: Johnny Cash...

    GIFFORD: Yes.

    KOTB: ...Elvis...

    GIFFORD: Yes.

    KOTB: ...Carl Perkins...

    GIFFORD: Carl Perkins.

    KOTB: ...and Jerry Lee Lewis.

    GIFFORD: Jerry Lee Lewis . Balls of fire!

    KOTB: OK. It all takes place in one day in a tiny recording studio .

    GIFFORD: December the 6th, in 1956 , I think.

    KOTB: You guys -- and it's -- and it's true. It's a true story . They were all together. They sing their hearts out. You are into it.

    GIFFORD: There's the guy playing Jerry Lee Lewis .

    KOTB: Come on.

    GIFFORD: He is unbelievable.

    KOTB: No, no.

    GIFFORD: He had to wear like band-aids on his fingers because they were bleeding.

    KOTB: Bleeding on the keys.

    GIFFORD: I want to give his name. He is so good, this kid.

    KOTB: No, it's crazy. It's like a concert, that's the......thing.

    GIFFORD: Levi Kreis.

    KOTB: Yeah.

    GIFFORD: Levi Kreis. Amazing.

    KOTB: Now I think...

    GIFFORD: I think he deserves a Tony nomination, I think.

    KOTB: Definitely.

    GIFFORD: They're all great but this guy is unbelievable.

    KOTB: It hasn't opened yet, officially.

    GIFFORD: It opens on Sunday night.

    KOTB: Sunday.

    GIFFORD: Sunday night.

    KOTB: All right. So we wish them all.

    GIFFORD: We wish them all the best. If -- I'm telling you, it's only 90 minutes , there's no intermission.

    KOTB: No, so good.

    GIFFORD: You're out at 3:30. It's so much fun.

    KOTB: You'll leave in a great mood. OK, how about this -- how should we describe this Qatari diplomat who was on this plane .

    GIFFORD: Oh. Mm-hmm.

    KOTB: This is -- OK, this is one of those where you go like, what were you thinking?

    GIFFORD: And we can't even charge the guy because he has diplomatic immunity .

    KOTB: Yeah, I mean...

    GIFFORD: Which makes me crazy.

    KOTB: There are so many of those stories about diplomats who break the law and there was one in New York , I remember...

    GIFFORD: And never pay for it .

    KOTB: ...yeah, drunk driver and they don't think.

    GIFFORD: Never pay for it .

    KOTB: So what happened was this guy's on a plane from DC to Denver , he goes into the bathroom, he wants to light a cigarette, I guess , have a cigarette. The flight attendant smells smoke, she tells the air marshal . They say to him, ` What's going on ?' And he apparently cracks a joke about being a shoe bomber or something or lighting his shoe on fire.

    GIFFORD: Oh, so funny.

    KOTB: Ha, ha, ha, ha.

    GIFFORD: Yeah.

    KOTB: And then, they set the...

    GIFFORD: The F-14s.

    KOTB: Yeah, F-14s or something...

    GIFFORD: Yeah.

    KOTB: ...alongside.

    GIFFORD: To scramble.

    KOTB: It was such a huge incident. In fact, on my BlackBerry , it was buzzing, terrorist incident . I was like, `Oh, my gosh, what's happening?'

    GIFFORD: Yes.

    KOTB: This was late night . And it turned out that the whole thing was a big old nothing. It was this guy who was smoking a cigarette.

    GIFFORD: Cigarette break. Here's the thing, I know we can't do anything about him in terms of having him pay for the crime.

    KOTB: Mm-hmm. Right.

    GIFFORD: Because it is a federal crime .

    KOTB: It's diplomatic, right.

    GIFFORD: But how about we send a bill to Qatar , to the country of Qatar , for this guy's misconduct for all it cost our taxpayers for that incident.

    KOTB: I think that's fair.

    GIFFORD: You know what?

    KOTB: I think that's fair.

    GIFFORD: That should be fair.

    KOTB: I think that's fair. I think that's fair.

    GIFFORD: We need...

    KOTB: Yeah, because what are you -- I do -- I want...

    GIFFORD: That's got to be a million dollars. That's got easily to be a million dollars for that.

    KOTB: I want someone to explain the whole diplomatic immunity thing. I mean, there was an incident, I don't remember when, but a diplomat hit somebody, it was a drunk driver , and there were no charges. Like certain crimes aren't about international stuff.

    GIFFORD: I think we need to relook at that. We definitely do. I also think the United Nations should not be here in New York unless they're going the pay their bills. You know? We've been footing the bills for them, too. Come on. This is ridiculous.

    KOTB: This is. There's a lot...

    GIFFORD: We're not a charity.

    KOTB: ...to complain about.

    GIFFORD: We're a member of the same organization that they are.

    KOTB: Yes, we are.

    GIFFORD: So quit breaking our laws and start paying your bills, OK?

    KOTB: Yeah.

    GIFFORD: And quit taking up everybody's parking spaces.

    KOTB: All right. That's important. All right.

    GIFFORD: When in Rome , do as the Romans do. When in America , treat us -- treat our country with respect.

    KOTB: Yeah.

    GIFFORD: It makes me crazy.

    KOTB: I think most do, most do. Come on, most do.

    GIFFORD: We have an issue today we have to talk about and we do not want to talk about it because we -- you never want these kinds of things to happen in our own family.

    KOTB: Mm-hmm.

    GIFFORD: But it has happened. Our colleague Tiki Barber is in the papers.

    KOTB: Mm-hmm.

    GIFFORD: ... yesterday and today , quite a bit about...

    KOTB: Yeah. He reportedly left his wife who's pregnant, she's eight months pregnant.

    GIFFORD: Ginny , mm-hmm.

    KOTB: Ginny. And they have...

    GIFFORD: With twins .

    KOTB: She's pregnant with twins and they have -- they have two children.

    GIFFORD: Two little boys. Mm-hmm.

    KOTB: Yeah. And he left her and there's an incident with infidelity. His camp is saying that these things didn't happen, calling it ludicrous and whatnot. And the other side is saying the opposite. But he does not live with her, I think that's been confirmed. He no longer lives with his wife.

    GIFFORD: I never saw any of that. I just, you know...

    KOTB: Yeah.

    GIFFORD: ...we always talked about how much we loved and adored Tiki and he always smells so good.

    KOTB: The way he smells. Yeah.

    GIFFORD: You know he's just a...

    KOTB: There was a -- no.

    GIFFORD: Apparently he smells really good, I don't know.

    KOTB: No one smells better than Tiki Barber .

    GIFFORD: Yeah.

    KOTB: It's true.

    GIFFORD: Well, Frank does. And in the papers...

    KOTB: Oh.

    GIFFORD: Yes.

    KOTB: We need to clear something up here. They keep saying that Tiki broke every single record .

    GIFFORD: That is not true.

    KOTB: Clear it up.

    GIFFORD: Frank Gifford still has the record for the most touchdowns, yes, he does.

    KOTB: Yes.

    GIFFORD: And Frank , when he started playing, for many years, only played 12 games in the season, not 14 like they do now. So that one record is nice and safe. But I just wish Tiki and his family all the best.

    KOTB: Yeah, we wish Ginny well.

    GIFFORD: I just wish that you guys would start thinking about what you're doing before you do it for once.

    KOTB: Yeah, yeah. There's a lot of these falling out of the trees . Tiger Woods , by the way, there's a new ad, you guys, with Tiger Woods . This is -- this is interesting. It's filmed in black and white . You hear -- we're going to show it to you in a second. Tiger 's looking to camera and you hear the voice of his father. They don't -- they don't identify it as his dad, but you do know it is his father. We're going to show you ad and then we want to hear what you think. But let's listen.

    GIFFORD: Expected to do, what are we supposed to do with that?

    KOTB: I don't know.

    GIFFORD: For me, it creeps me out.

    KOTB: I think...

    GIFFORD: I don't like it at all.

    KOTB: Donny Deutsch , who does all this advertising stuff...

    GIFFORD: Yeah.

    KOTB: ...said it was a home run .

    GIFFORD: I know.

    KOTB: Now, it looks like his father kind of wagging his finger at Tiger .

    GIFFORD: Well, we all know that his father has been deceased for several years.

    KOTB: Sure. I don't -- what's weird is, if you're Tiger , and he's listening to it at the same time. This all happened simultaneously.

    GIFFORD: We don't know how it came to be made, right?

    KOTB: From his perspective, it must be wrenching because no matter what your dad, you know, is like, you want to please your dad. As a viewer look -- peeking in, it's weird, to me.

    GIFFORD: It doesn't make me want to run anything Nike .

    KOTB: Right. I think the whole thing's a little bit...

    GIFFORD: Anyway.

    KOTB: OK. We've got to talk about the things on this table. There are people out there who are spending lots and lots of money on food. Expensive food.

    GIFFORD: I don't know anybody personally that is, but in -- but with everybody complaining so much about the economy now and so many people struggling...

    KOTB: People are still buying this stuff.

    GIFFORD: ...it's bizarre to me that this stuff is out there.

    KOTB: OK.

    GIFFORD: But we're going to show it to you.

    KOTB: This is a hamburger...

    GIFFORD: Yes.

    KOTB: ...that costs $175.

    GIFFORD: They sell about six of these a week, I hear.

    KOTB: Yeah. It's a Wall Street burger. It's made of that Kobe beef , that special kind of beef.

    Offscreen Voice: Wall Street Burger Shoppe.

    GIFFORD: At the Wall Street Burger Shop .

    KOTB: Wall Street Burger Shoppe. There's gold flecks on it. Who eats gold? And what does it...

    GIFFORD: It's edible gold.

    KOTB: I don't know why.

    GIFFORD: It's got aged Gruyere , truffle mayonnaise and shaved black truffles .

    KOTB: All right. So...

    GIFFORD: And it's 175.

    KOTB: This one is from Serendipity . It's $1,000. It's got gold items in it and some ice cream .

    GIFFORD: And they sell a few of those.

    KOTB: I don't know how to get in there.

    GIFFORD: You know.

    KOTB: They sell this. This is...

    GIFFORD: This one is $25,000.

    KOTB: I can't even get in there.

    GIFFORD: But you get to keep the tray and the spoon and the little -- and the little dish.

    KOTB: OK. These...

    GIFFORD: Yeah, it's just unbelievable.

    KOTB: This is a pizza and the whole one's over there, but this is a tiny slice of it. It's $1,000, the pizza.

    GIFFORD: You want me to dip into this $25,000 one, you guys?

    KOTB: Caviar.

    GIFFORD: All right.

    KOTB: I don't -- I don't want any gold flecks. I don't need to eat -- I don't like that.

    GIFFORD: Well, you're going to have to eat it, just for research sake.

    KOTB: And this is a -- thank you.

    GIFFORD: Is it worth?

    KOTB: I mean, it's OK. Like I'm a Dairy Queen girl. I don't know, that doesn't -- that doesn't ring my bell . I'm just saying. This is a...

    GIFFORD: Frittata.

    KOTB: Frittata. You can try that.

    GIFFORD: I can have a bite of. This has caviar...

    KOTB: That's a thousand bucks, too.

    GIFFORD: ...it has lobster meat...

    KOTB: Mm-hmm. Go.

    GIFFORD: ...and we'll see. And a couple of eggs.

    KOTB: Try a bite of that.

    GIFFORD: My cholesterol.

    Voice: From Norma's.

    GIFFORD: Huh?

    Voice: Norma's.

    KOTB: From Norma's.

    GIFFORD: All right.

    Voice:

    KOTB: And where's the pizza from?

    GIFFORD: I get some lobster on it.

    Voice: Nino's Bellissima.

    KOTB: Nino's Bellissima. OK. We should talk about, OK! or not OK! How is it, is it OK?

    GIFFORD: Really delicious.

    KOTB: Delicious? Delicious.

    GIFFORD: But $1,000, I don't know.

    KOTB: OK. We did our OK! or not OK! The question this week is: Is it OK to flash your abs? In the new OK! magazine .

    GIFFORD: Yeah.

    KOTB: OK. Kathie Lee says, `If you look like Gisele Bundchen , "ab"-solutely.'

    GIFFORD: "Abs"-solutely.

    KOTB: `If you look like me, "abs"-solutely not.'

    GIFFORD: Not.

    KOTB: OK. I say, `Not if your abs are flabs, but I guess a quick peek at a washboard never hurts.' And they have people who have great abs flashing them.

    GIFFORD: Mm-hmm.

    KOTB: Anyway.

    GIFFORD: I think they've got to be in awfully good shape. Really, really good shape.

    KOTB: You've got to be in tip top .

    GIFFORD: Keep America beautiful and keep your clothes on if you're not in great shape.

    KOTB: All right, let's go to Sara .

    GIFFORD: Why are you looking at Tammy right now? Tammy 's pregnant, OK?

    KOTB: Tammy is pregnant and looking good.

    GIFFORD: She's just fine. She is.

    KOTB: Yes, she is.

    GIFFORD: Sara, what's happening, baby?

    KOTB: Hi, Sara.

    SARA HAINES reporting: Hi , guys. We're talking about the Tiger ad. People are all over the board with it. Buddy said, "The ad is brilliant." Kristen said, "It's one of the stupidest things I've ever seen." Shirley said, "It's creepy." Gail says, "Whatever, I'm done with it." And Hoda , Brenda , a fan, says, "Thank you for taking the time to take pictures yesterday on the plaza. It was the highlight of my daughter's first trip to New York City ."

    KOTB: Well, that was fun.

    GIFFORD: Very nice of you.

    KOTB: I remember Brenda and the gang. Yeah. It was really so nice out.

    GIFFORD: Oh, it was gorgeous.

    KOTB: Everybody passed out.

    GIFFORD: Absolutely gorgeous.

    KOTB: Yeah.

    GIFFORD: We'd love to know more about how you all feel about the...

    KOTB: That Tiger ad.

    GIFFORD: Yeah. And even -- and also about the Tiki thing.

    KOTB: Mm-hmm.

    GIFFORD: We'd like you to let us know how you feel.

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