If you’ve opted for burgers this Memorial Day (May, after all, is National Hamburger Month), you could go to Costco and buy your meat, buns and toppings on the cheap, spending roughly $20 for two dozen burgers.
Or, if money is no object, you could actually order the most expensive hamburger in America for the hefty price of $5,000. That’s no typo – it’s a five and three zeroes – and yes, it’s what one burger sells for at the world-renowned Fleur by Hubert Keller in Las Vegas. Five grand is more than what the average American family of four spends on summer vacation travel.
To be fair (and partly to justify the price tag), the costliest hamburger is usually served with a bottle of upscale wine or champagne and toppings that range from foie gras to truffles.
For many establishments, the types of beef used – mostly high-quality Wagyu and Kobe imported from Japan – are a convenient reason to charge extraordinary prices. Still, having one of the most expensive hamburgers in the country on the menu is often nothing more than a publicity stunt to attract people who end up ordering a far cheaper item.
“The price is a completely arbitrary thing,” said Franz Aliquo, founder and owner of 666 Burger, which has two trucks in New York City that list a $666 burger on the menu – as well as a $6.66 burger. “It’s very easy to be the most expensive burger. You just raise the price.” (Whether anyone actually buys the priciest burger from a food truck is another matter.)
It’s easier to find some of the most expensive hamburgers in large cities, especially New York City and Las Vegas, although a couple of smaller towns in Michigan and in Florida aren’t afraid to charge a three-digit figure for their burgers.
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