London: A British chef is offering his services to cook the ultimate Christmas meal for a group of four for £125,000.
Twenty-five-year-old Ben Spalding, who is head chef at John Salt in Islington, London, has teamed up with luxury website, VeryFirstTo.com to offer to cook a four-course meal full of gourmet ingredients on the Christmas Day this year.
Spalding, who has completed residencies at some of the top restaurants in the world like Heston Blumenthal’s The Fat Duck, Gordon Ramsay’s Royal Hospital Road and Per Se in New York, will cook at the home of the diners, who buy the meal. His speciality at John Salt, where he started his six-month residency in October, is brick chicken for which he has been praised by critics and diners.
Spalding, who will donate 80 per cent of his fee to Cancer Research UK and Hospitality Action charities, is facing criticism on Twitter for the extravagant meal. Spalding defended the luxurious Christmas dinner, saying he was donating most of his fees to charity if someone took up the offer. If, not, he tweeted, “At least I am trying to make a difference. It may not even sell. If that is the case, I will spend the day with my young family and two babies. But at least I tried.”
The first course will include drinks from a £37,000 bottle of Piper Heidsieck 1907 Champagne that pre dates World War One and Almas caviar, the world’s most expensive fish eggs at £5,000. Champagne will be served in diamond studded champagne flutes to keep the luxury theme strong. For fans for liquor, Spalding has a bottle of Diva vodka at £2,000. The first course will also include the use of 150-year-old balsamic vinegar, costing £1,030.
The world’s most expensive melon from China, the Yubari King which costs £2,500, makes up the second course, accompanied by whole white Alba truffle costing £3,500 and saffron stock at £500.
Spalding’s menu includes a decadent makeover for traditional Christmas turkey for the third course. He will serve rare breed turkey without bones (£500) with Japanese Wagyu beef fillet and heart (costing £4,500) and wrapped in edible 50 carat gold leaf (costing £6,000) and sprinkled with Akbari Pistachios (£5,000).
The fourth and final course will be served on a gold Ugandan vanilla plate costing £1,500. The desert dish includes whipped Kopi Luwak, beans of coffee berries excreted by the Asian Palm Civet cat, costing £3,000 and rare Densuke watermelon, a seedless fruit grown only on the island of Hokkaido, Japan, costing £2,600.
The drinks on offer with the meal will include 1949 Cheval Blanc (£4,680), 1988 Corton-Charlemagne, Coche-Dury (£1,390), 1959 La Tache (£5,400) and 1976 Chateau d'Yquem (£990).