In the world of gastronomy, opinions on what constitutes a ‘nice meal’ vary widely. For some, it’s the simplicity of wings and a cold drink, while others revel in the sophistication of a candlelit dinner adorned with multiple sets of cutlery. However, Turkish chef Nusret Gökçe, famously known as Salt Bae, has once again stirred controversy, this time for proudly showcasing a jaw-dropping $108,000 bill from his Nusr-Et restaurant in Dubai.
Salt Bae’s penchant for opulence and high-priced menus is not a new phenomenon. His establishments have consistently made headlines for their extravagant prices, but this time, the chef took it a step further by publicly boasting about it on Instagram. The viral sensation shared a snapshot of a check from his Dubai restaurant, revealing a staggering total of 398,630 UAE dirhams.
The breakdown of the bill reads like a gastronomic fantasy – from a seemingly ordinary $13 portion of fries to three ‘Golden Steaks,’ tallying up to almost $1,400. The customers also indulged in a lavish selection of beverages, including four martinis, two bottles of Chateau Petrus 2009, one bottle of Petrus 2011, and five double glasses of the exclusive Louis XIII cognac, amounting to a princely sum of $61,230.
The extravagance continued with the inclusion of 11 ‘Golden Baklava’ desserts, each priced at $1,250. To cap it off, a generous tip of $24,500 was added, catapulting the bill into the realm of financial excess.
Salt Bae’s response to the hefty price tag was nonchalant, captioning the Instagram post with the words, “Money comes money goes.” However, the internet wasn’t as forgiving. Social media users, shocked by the exorbitant bill, expressed their discontent with many criticizing the renowned chef for the perceived overpricing of his culinary offerings.
“Most overrated and overpriced restaurant,” commented one disgruntled individual, echoing the sentiments of several others. Another user pondered the value of wealth, stating, “Imagine being this wealthy… and then blowing it on overpriced food.”
A more pointed critique came from a user who raised concerns about social responsibility, writing, “How many people in poor countries could’ve eaten with the money spent here. I have zero respect for this so-called chef.”
Salt Bae’s Dubai restaurant is just one among the more than 20 eateries he has established over the years. The chef initially rose to fame in 2017 when a viral video of him theatrically sprinkling salt onto a steak captured the world’s attention. Yet, the recent controversy surrounding the extravagant bill prompts a broader discussion on the perception of luxury dining and whether the experience justifies such exorbitant costs. As opinions continue to pour in, it remains to be seen whether Salt Bae’s culinary empire will weather the storm of criticism or if it prompts a reassessment of what truly constitutes a ‘nice meal.’