Liquid Luxuries

Natasha Lardera (June 01, 2009)
There have always been people with money to burn, but rarely have there been so many particular concoctions at their disposal

As the public becomes increasingly savvy and discriminating about what passes their lips, bartenders around the world are offering exorbitantly priced cocktails and drinking the night away can really break the bank. Surprisingly, not all drinks need gems to be ultra-pricey as distillers offer better and better spirits to work with. At the moment of writing this article, the following are the most expensive cocktails in the world.

$51,200 is the price of the Dazzle offered at the Second Floor Bar inside Harvey Nichols in Manchester, U.K. Along with rose Champagne and strawberry and lychee liqueur, comes an 18-karat white-gold ring with pink tourmaline and diamond stones hidden, so to speak, at the bottom of the glass. For much less, $19,000 to be exact, one can have the Diamond/Ruby Cocktail at the Piano Bar inside the Sheraton Park Tower Hotel in London. Depending on the chosen gem, this drink can run anywhere from $4,350 for a .6-carat diamond to $19,000 for 2.6 carats. The mixture includes Charles Heidsieck champagne blended with Remy Martin

Louis XIII cognac, angostura bitters and a sugar cube. The price tag goes down, but is still pretty high, to $10,000 for the Martini-on-the-Rock served at the Blue Bar inside the Algonquin Hotel in New York. This martini must be ordered 72 hours in advance in order to pre-select the diamond and setting by the suggested jeweler. As of today, only two have been ordered since the drink's launch in 2004. The latest addition to the list is the 27321, a drink concocted by the bartenders at the Skyview Bar of the Burj Al Arab, Dubai. The finished cocktail is made from Macallan 55 year old single malt natural color whisky, produced from dried fruit bitters that add to the whisky’s flavor, homemade passion fruit sugar and is then served over ice cubes made of water from the Macallan distillery in Scotland, along with an oak stirrer made from a Macallan Cask. The cocktail is then presented in a Baccarat 18-karat gold glass, which the lucky buyer gets to bag afterwards. Price? $7,500.

For “just” $3,000, visitors of Las Vegas can sip a Manage A Trois at Tryst inside the Wynn Hotel. This drink combines a threesome of 23-carat-gold garnish, edible gold flakes and liquid gold syrup. The other ingredients are Cristal Ros, Hennessy Ellipse and Grand Marnier Cent-ciquantenaire mix. To end things with a touch of lavishness, the drink can be sipped through a golden straw studded with a diamond solitaire.

At The Merchant Hotel in Belfast, Ireland, they serve a delicious Mai Tai for $1,400. No gold or diamonds are used in the creation of this drink that is made with Wray & Nephew 17-year-old

rum that was a key ingredient for “Trader Vic” Bergeron's original Mai Tai. It's unclear if this bottle is an actual remnant from the sugar estate or a ridiculously limited reproduction made some time later. "People are always looking for something different," say the headlines of luxury magazines, "something they can't find anywhere else."
These exorbitant price tags are not for cocktails and particular creations only, as more and more producers put on the market lavish ingredients, among which we even find beer.
  Samuel Adams has come out with the most expensive beer available on the market, indeed Samuel Adams/Boston Beer Company’s Utopias, launched a couple of years ago, is the world’s strongest and priciest beer and at $100 per bottle. The beer is brewed with a blend of high-quality hops and sold in an ornate copper-plated brew kettle and offers a flavor unlike any other expensive beer or beverage in the world. The sweet flavor is richly highlighted with hints of vanilla, oak and caramel. The Swiss company DeLafée, specialized in edible gold products, has unleashed Golden Bubbles, a sparkling wine Rosé Brut with edible gold. Made exclusively from Pinot Noir from the Neuchatel Region in Western Switzerland, Golden Bubbles has a light to medium body with an aroma reminiscent of black cherry, raspberry or currant. It is perfect for romantic occasions, like weddings and anniversaries, but also for luxurious parties and gatherings. A large bottle goes for about a couple hundred dollars.

But what about $225,000 for a bottle of Pasión Azteca, Platinum Liquor Bottle by Tequila Ley .925? Each one of the limited-edition expensive tequila bottles, which resemble a barbed sea shell and are engraved by Alejandro Gomez Oropeza, a Mexican artist, are filled with Pasión Azteca tequila, made from pure sap of the blue agave plant that has been fermented, distilled, and aged for six years.

The company has produced additional bottles that have been made out of gold and platinum and retail slightly less for $150,000 while the range of gold and silver bottles of expensive tequila will set you back by $25,000. As we are talking of tequila, we can say that in New York, at Johnny Utah’s, a Western-style restaurant located in Rockefeller Center, one can enjoy, The Vault, what was known as the world’s most expensive margarita. The ingredients are a $300 bottle of Herradura Suprema tequila, along with grilled-lime juice and agave syrup. The drink costs $51 and was recently dethroned by the Riverside Grand Margarita, of the Riverside Hotel in Fort Lauderdale. This exclusive drink uses freshlysqueezed lime juice; Cuvée Speciale Cent Cinquantenaire, a special triple sec made to commemorate the Grand Marnier company’s 150th anniversary, and Patron Tequila Gran Platinum. The finished product costs $65, making it the most expensive margarita in the world although it really sounds like a bargain if compared to the drinks previously listed in this article.

And to end on a dazzling note, let’s talk about the Henri IV Dudognon Heritage, named after the French king whose descendents have been producing Cognac since 1776, a particular bottle of this wine that has been aged for 100 years in barrels that were air dried for five years before use. That alone still doesn’t make it the world’s most expensive Cognac, though. The priciest aspect isn’t the wine itself, but the packaging. Dipped in 24k gold and sterling platinum, the bottle’s adorned with 6,500 brilliant cut diamonds by its designer, jeweler Jose Davalos. The final price of this costly Cognac is around $2 million USD! Lavish and opulent, just the way we like it.  

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