Having become a viral meme in 2017, Nusret Gökçe, better known as ‘Salt Bae’, opened his first London restaurant last week and has made headlines for serving gold-gilded steaks and burgers with three-figure price tags.
With the official opening announced at short notice, Nusr-Et Knightsbridge is the first London branch of Salt Bae’s luxury steakhouse chain, situated within the Park Tower Knightsbridge Hotel, with other restaurants in locations such as Istanbul, Miami, New York, and United Arab Emirates Dubai.
And following the hype which surrounded the opening, the restaurant has been busy with visits from celebrities, keen foodies, and others ready to spend £9 on a bottle of still water.
At the weekend, one Twitter user shared a photo of the bill for eight people, coming in at a whopping £1,812.40 (£1,576 without the 15 per cent service charge).
“Having a laugh”
Alongside the photo, the tweet has since gone viral, reading: “44 great british pounds for 4 redbulls… having a laugh.”
The Twitter user followed up his original tweet with: “don’t get me wrong i’m all for fine dining and good food but that’s just fucking extortionate”.
The brand’s restaurants are popular amongst celebrities such as Donald Trump Jr, Conor McGregor, and Leonardo DiCaprio, which suggests the level of exclusivity to be expected. And while a high end luxury steakhouse in one of London’s wealthiest postcodes was never going to be cheap, some of the menu prices are absolutely absurd.
First, there’s £11 for a can of Red Bull, £9 for a Coca Cola, or £9 for a bottle of Elvira still water.
And then there’s the food. £10 for a portion of fries seems inexpensive compared to the giant Tomahawk steak for £630, covered in edible 24 carat gold. News of Tom Kerridge’s £87 steak at The Hand & Flowers now seems completely irrelevant.
Elsewhere, burgers are also gilded and priced at £100, while burrata costs £25 and a house salad will set guests back £23. As for the desserts, gold-gilded baklava costs £22.
As a result of the high prices, the fact that Turkish tea is served for free seems absolutely implausible – perhaps intended as compensation.
Since opening, the new restaurant’s menu has also got plenty of people talking on Twitter, generally astonished by the prices.
“£630 for Tomahawk steak. No thank you.”
One Twitter user said: “It’s cheaper to fly and have food at Salt Bae’s Turkish restaurant than to go to the London one. £9 for coke. £630 for Tomahawk steak. No thank you.”
The Turkish’s restaurant’s menu prices aren’t displayed online, but one Tripadvisor review suggests diners who ordered one beef carpaccio, three burgers, three desserts, and three soft drinks were charged over £75, which would cost in excess of £350 at the London restaurant.
Another Twitter user said: “There’s a line where high restaurant prices stop being rip-offs and become a kind of performance art.
“I think Salt Bae’s new London restaurant has soared past it.”