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The Most Expensive Meals in the “World”

On the Walt Disney World Moms Panel, we field several questions every day from guests looking for ways to economize on their Disney food budget. These are meaningful and important questions, and we’re happy to help.

But every once in a while I find myself wishing that someone would send in a question like, “My rich uncle has died and left me a gazillion dollars. What’s the most expensive meal I can buy at Walt Disney World?” (Or maybe I’m just wishing that I had rich uncle in poor health :-).)

V&A's caviar. Yummy (and expensive).

The quick answer to the expensive meal question is Victoria & Albert’s at the Grand Floridian. This posh-beyond-posh restaurant will set you back at least $125 in the main dining room, or at least $200 in the even-more-posh-beyond-posh Queen Victoria Room or Chef’s Table.

And that’s not including tax, tip, booze, and supplementary extra caviar. I’m sure Uncle Moneybags would approve.

Disney World’s Priciest Meals

But I found myself wondering if there were any “regular” restaurant meals that would inflict nearly this much damage to my shiny red Disney Visa. I decided to figure out the most expensive non-V&A’s meal you could find at Walt Disney World (not counting special event or private event meals).

And as an added bonus, I realized that this would be a good tool for a guest on the Disney Dining Plan who was REEEEALLY looking to get his money’s worth.

So in order to compare apples to apples, or more accurately steak to steak, I decided to construct the most expensive standard three course meal at each Disney World signature restaurant: one appetizer/starter course, one single-serving entree, and one dessert.

Flying Fish, Boardwalk (DDP = Yes)

  • Chardonnay-steamed Mussels, $18
  • Black Angus New York Strip Steak, $42
  • Trio of Concession Sweets, $9

TOTAL: $69

Bistro de Paris, Epcot (DDP = Yes)

  • Smoked Salmon Pastrami, $16
  • Maine Lobster, $46
  • Raspberry Souffle (and others), $11

TOTAL: $73

Brown Derby, Disney’s Hollywood Studios (DDP = Yes)

  • Cobb Salad, $15
  • 8 oz. Charred Filet of Beef, $41
  • Chocolate Three Ways (and others), $9

TOTAL: $65

Filet Mignon at Hollywood Brown Derby

Cobb Salad at Hollywood Brown Derby

California Grill, Contemporary (DDP = Yes)

  • Dragon Roll or Deluxe Sushi Platter, $28
  • Oak Fired Filet of Beef or Cast-iron Seared Bison, $47
  • Valhrona Chocolate Cake, $13

TOTAL: $88

Cast Iron Seared Bison and Truffle Mac and Cheese at California Grill

Citricos, Grand Floridian (DDP = Yes)

  • Spiced Ahi Tuna, $16
  • Braised Veal Shank, $50
  • Chocolate Banana Torte, $11

TOTAL, $77

Il Mulino New York Trattoria, Swan Hotel (DDP = No)

  • Calamari Fritta (and others), $11
  • Medaglione Di Filetto, $45
  • Tiramisu, $10

TOTAL: $66

Jiko, Animal Kingdom Lodge (DDP = Yes)

  • Wild Boar Tenderloin or Spiced Ahi, $16
  • Oak Grilled Filet Mignon, $43
  • Artisanal Cheese Selection, $14

TOTAL: $73

Jiko Cheese Plate

Filet and Mac and Cheese at Jiko (Mac and Cheese by request)

Jiko Braised Short Ribs. Only the second most expensive thing on the menu.

Fulton’s Crab House, Downtown Disney (DDP = Yes)

  • Crab Claws, $20
  • One Pound Alaska King Crab Claws, $55
  • Cheesecake, $8

TOTAL: $83

Artist Point, Wilderness Lodge (DDP = Yes)

  • Dungeness Crab Salad or Artist Point “BLT,” $15
  • Grilled Angus Beef Tenderloin or Buffalo Striploin Steak, $43
  • Chocolate Indulgence, $11

TOTAL: $69

Buffalo Striploin Steak at Artist Point

Le Cellier, dinner, Epcot (DDP = Yes)

  • Lobster Chopped Salad or Beef Tartare, $16
  • New York Strip Steak, $44
  • Trio of Chocolate, $10

TOTAL: $70

Canadian Prime New York Strip with Potato Pave

Trio of Chocolate: Nanaimo Bar, Sorbet, and Lava Cake

Narcoossee’s, Grand Floridian (DDP = Yes)

  • Jumbo Crab Cakes, $17
  • Butter-poached Lobster Tail and Grilled Filet Mignon, $68
  • Almond Crusted Cheesecake (and others), $10

TOTAL: $95

Crab Cakes at Narcoossee's

Almond Cheesecake

Shula’s Steak House, Dolphin (DDP = No)

  • 8 oz. Cold Water Lobster Tail, $41
  • Surf & Turf, $84
  • Chocolate Souffle (and others), $11

TOTAL: $136

Todd English’s bluezoo, Dolphin (DDP = No)

  • Baja Oct, $16
  • Cantonese Lobster, $60
  • Banana Cream Tart (and others), $14

TOTAL: $90

Banana Cream Tart at Bluezoo

Wolfgang Puck Dining Room, Downtown Disney (DDP = Yes)

  • Pan Seared Scallops (and others), $18
  • Prime Ribeye, $47
  • All desserts, $8

TOTAL: $73

Yachtsman Steakhouse, Yacht Club (DDP = Yes)

  • Ahi Crudo (and others), $16
  • Beef Wellington Deconstructed, $47
  • Artisanal Cheese Platter, $14

TOTAL: $77

Deconstructed Beef Wellington at Yachtsman Steakhouse

Yachtsman cheese plate

Oh, and by the way, many of these venues also offer creamy, cheesy, potatoey sorts of side dishes available for an extra $7-10. You could also do some serious damage at the raw bars of Fulton’s or Narcoossee’s.

I left those factors off the analysis, but there’s no reason you have to leave them off your plate if you’re looking to bulk up your bill, or your belly.

Rich Bistro de Paris Souffle.

What Can We Learn From This Experiment?

Are you feeling full yet? ‘Cause I am STUFFED just thinking about all this food. But think more I shall, and here are my thoughts:

  • You CAN pay less: You can certainly visit a signature venue and spend much less than this, chicken and veggies are waaay less expensive.
  • Or pay MORE: It’s possible to rack up a very substantial bill at any of the signature and fine dining restaurants at Walt Disney World.
  • Pricy items are similar: The priciest items are fairly standard across all the menus: a seafood based appetizer, beef based entree, and chocolate based dessert will hit your wallet hardest every time.
  • Pricing is similar: The Disney-owned, Dining Plan accepting restaurants have a very similar highest price point — typically between $65-75.
  • Choice matters: Fulton’s looks high, but would anyone actually get crab claws for both appetizer and entree? Similarly at Shula’s, would you get both a lobster tail AND Surf and Turf?
  • Don’t forget extras…” With drinks, tax, and tip, you can easily pay more than $100 per person at a signature meal.
  • Calculate first: If you’re in splurge mode and paying out of pocket, the regular signature restaurants can hit you almost as hard as the main dining room at Victoria & Albert’s. It may be worth thinking about whether an even splurgier splurge is worth it.

So what do you think fellow eaters? Have any of you actually had a meal like one of these? If Uncle Moneybags left you gazillions, where do you go first to toast his memory? Let us know in the comments below.

Erin Foster is the Disney Food for Families columnist and a behind-the-scenes guru here at Disney Food Blog! Check out more of her posts here.

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41 Comments

  1. Amanda says:

    Thank you so much for putting this post together!!! I am always looking for ‘the most expensive’ things at Disney World! (Not that I actually indulge in them; it’s just fun to dream!) :)

  2. Carolyn says:

    The only time I’ve eaten meals like that is when I had deluxe dining! Great time, and it was awesome to do all the signature restaurants in one trip, but seriously thinking I was never going to eat again by the end of that trip!

  3. Nicola says:

    My Mum and Sister had the Bison at Cali Grill and said it was amazing!! And my dad had the beef wellington at Yatchsman. Both Great examples of food worth its money.

    Thanks to the Dining plan we were able to enjoy these restaurants and meals and not feel guilty that they cost probably more than we would pay for a meal out. :-)

  4. Jason says:

    Another idea that my wife and I have done in the past is to split our meals. It is so much food that one person, at least the two of us, have trouble finishing everything, and we really regret it if we do. Now with our son (age four), we just split our food up with him and then have lunch the next day as well because we end up taking so much food home. We don’t go to one of these places unless we have around $350 to spend, but it is always worth it.

  5. Bret says:

    the math geek in me noticed that the Bistro de Paris meal is actually $73.

    Not being a red meat eater, I never get the big ticket slab of beef. I guess that means I will not be having most of these meals, but it was interesting seeing the best use of your DDP points.

  6. Pudge the Fish says:

    I love this type of info, thanks for compiling it Erin. I’m surprised to see that California Grill would let you order a $28 appetizer while on the DDP.

  7. Katie says:

    Having dined at Bluezoo, Flying Fish, Yachtsman, and Jiko in the last year, I’m wishing I had an Uncle Moneybags to help foot the bill! I think the aforementioned are definitely worth the splurge, if it’s in the budget. I have Tables in Wonderland which is great since it also gives a discount on drinks, which really add to your bill.

  8. Joy Ousterout says:

    Well of course I would splurge and take 10 of my closest friends and family to the Chef’s Table at V&A’s – but I know my dear old uncle would particularly enjoy the view from heaven as I toast his memory at Club 33!! I can imagine there is a certain amount I could pay to perhaps be “bumped up” on the waiting list!

  9. Jenny says:

    What wonderful food, right now my wallet is screaming ouch!.
    :)
    Thank you for that review, my DH and have wondered how much it would be if we went to V&A chefs table. Now I can tell him maybe he will not want to go or he’ll want to save that extra$$ to say we did it.
    :)

  10. AJ says:

    Amanda — Erin comes up with the most interesting topics! She has one in draft right now that I can’t wait to see!

    Carolyn — I know the feeling!

    Nicola — Great reviews; thanks!

    Jason — Those are good tips. Do you often get charged a split-plate charge?

    Bret — Thanks for the math update! And don’t worry, you can still spend some serious cash without getting the meat. ;-)

    Pudge — There may be restrictions for multi-person platters, etc. I’m not sure show Cali Grill does sushi when it comes to the DDP.

    Katie — Agreed 100%. We definitely get good use out of our Tables in Wonderland card!

    Joy Ousterout — Ha ha! Are you currently on the waiting list for Club 33??

    Jenny — My wallet is screaming, too! :-)

  11. Resident_Hippie says:

    But with the current standard dining plan, appetizers are not part of it, right? Wish there could be option of appetizer or dessert, but that’s a whole ‘nother discussion! I believe on the deluxe plan they are, though.

  12. Dayna says:

    This list is wonderful! We’re eating at all signatures for our honeymoon in October and if there’s ever a time to splurge that’d be it. Maybe I’ll even go for double crab claws at Fultons haha.

  13. Diane says:

    The “Deconstructed Beef Wellington at Yachtsman Steakhouse” looks amazing!! Why isn’t it reflected on their menu??

  14. Shayne says:

    What a fun post! We’re celebrating the 11th anniversary of my 29th birthday at WDW this September/October. Flying Fish, Jiko, Narcoossee’s and the V&A Queen Victoria Room are all on our schedule, so we will definitely be in splurge mode.

    We mostly do table service restaurants anyway, so dining at all of these signature places with just hubby and me may not be a significantly different cost from our typical dining costs when we’re with the kids. Or at least I’m going to tell myself that. ;)

  15. Alfred H. says:

    Unfortunately, I don’t have a rich uncle . . . but if I did have one, I would be pushing his wheelchair a little closer to the side of the bridge after reading such a tantalizing post.

  16. Steph says:

    I haven’t been to WDW yet, so it kind of scares me to see the prices! I’m hoping to save enough for the trip alone! :) We live in CA so for 4 of us to go out there is a nice chunk! The food you listed is my kind of food, though!

  17. Michael says:

    Great read! My wife & I are by no means wealthy (we combine for maybe $70k per year). That being said when we went on our honeymoon in 2010, I wanted to do things I’ve never done before, I.e. stay at a deluxe resort and eat at an expensive restaurant.

    We decided to go to victoria & albert’s. It was the most expensive meal I’ve ever eaten (almost $700 w/tip) but it was worth every penny. I tried things I normally would have never eaten before and discovered that I like duck and elk! However I also learned I still do not like wine and wasted the money on a wine pairing, oh well live and learn.

    If you are celebrating something I recommend going big at least 1 time and go to Victoria and albert’s.

  18. JT says:

    Have an ADR booked for September at Cali Grill, and that bison looks like heaven. I think I know what I’m getting…

  19. kirsty says:

    I have spent more at California Grill. I got sushi for an app, and then a fab. tuna entree and for my dessert the cheese which added on 20 dollars, my bill alone for over 100 dollars!

  20. Sherri Erwin says:

    Our most expensive Disney meal for two topped $1000 with tip. It was at Bistro de Paris and we added a very fine wine to our meal. Very fine. It was memorable and decadent, and so fun. Bistro was not on the dining plan at that time. As you can imagine, we had amazing service. We typically hit two signature dining venues per trip, and we’re in vacation mode, so we don’t really look at prices. But… we’re not usually as extravagant as we were during that particular Bistro de Paris visit. California Grill is where we usually end up spending the most money. The views put us in the mood to linger awhile and enjoy.

  21. Jayne says:

    But most of these cost 2 credits on any of the dining plans. So, if you divide the cost in half you could get 2 meals at other restaurants for the price of one meal in the signatures.

  22. Carrie says:

    Stop it! You’re making me hungry AND broke! :D

  23. Dana says:

    When did Bistro de Paris start accepting the dining plan? My husband and I ate there last year, and they did not accept the dining plan for it. We gladly paid for it (it was delicious!!!), and I think the total with tip was under $300.

  24. Sherri Erwin says:

    I think the sushi dish you selected for your app at California Grill is considered one of their entree sushi dishes. Not all of the sushi dishes will be served as appetizers on the dining plan.

  25. MegaGlide says:

    Just to clarify, you state “…The Disney-owned, and thus Dining Plan accepting, restaurants…” in your blog. Does Disney now own Fulton’s? I sure hope so, because that might mean that the quality and service now has a chance of improving.
    That place used to be the highlight of our meals at Disney World, but has been so consistantly bad (especially the service) for so long, that we simply refuse to go back.
    It’d be nice if Disney cared enough to fix that…

  26. AJ says:

    Resident_Hippie — That’s correct. No app unless you’re Deluxe Dining or higher.

    Dayna — Congrats on the wedding and enjoy!

    Diane — If it’s not on the menu, that’s a recent change. Signature restaurants do change up the menu very often, and the Deconstructed Wellington was there for several months so it may have been rotated off recently.

    Shayne — Sigh…I wish I was on that trip with you! I make a great third wheel!

    Alfred H. — No kidding!!

    Steph — Trust me, you can eat MUCH cheaper than this! (And you can get good food for the lower prices, too.) No worries. :-)

    Michael — Isn’t V&A’s amazing?! I’m so glad you took the risk to try it out! Bummer on the wine pairing, but that’s a few thousand dollars you’ll never have to spend now that you know! ;-)

    JT — Fingers crossed it’s still there for ya! If not, I’m sure there will be equally amazing things on the menu!

    Kirsty — This is based on current menus, but I’m absolutely sure you can add more to the bill during different seasons!

    Sherri Erwin — Sometimes splurging on a great meal is the perfect way to relax and make a wonderful vacation memory!!

    Jayne — Yep!

    Carrie — I’m already there! ;-)

    Dana — Bistro started accepting the dining plan this year (2012). So glad you had a great experience!

    Sherri Erwin — Thanks for the detail!

    MegaGlide — Thanks for the question! No, Fulton’s is not owned by Disney. We should clarify that all Disney-owned restaurants are on the dining plan, but not all dining plan restaurants are Disney-owned. I agree with your perception; I’ve had some bad experiences at Fulton’s.

  27. CraigInPA says:

    I’m planning yet another trip to WDW for this coming February. In previous years we’ve bought the deluxe dining plan. For this forthcoming trip, we had made the decision to curtail the signature restaurants where we normally dine and choose less expensive table service restaurants, primarily because of Disney’s nearly $15 increase per person per day (x6 people) over last year’s prices for the deluxe dining plan.

    After I forwarded this article to my wife, she pointed out that we had eaten several of these same exact meals. And, now that she was reminded of what we’d be missing by curtailing signature meals, we have to “re-think” our strategy for 2013.

    In other words, this article just cost me $2700 to upgrade from regular dining to deluxe.

    But, look at what we’ll be eating!

  28. Nikki says:

    After reading this I went back and made a reservation for Narcosses’s LOL….. I can’t help myself, Lobster im absolute fav.!!! I’m so excited to have the Deluxe dining this coming November. I’m probably going to eat myself sick!

  29. Mark D. says:

    So, an average meal at one of these signature places would be probably right around $60-$70 if you are not purposefully ordering the most expensive stuff.

    So why does it make sense to pay $100 per night for deluxe dining? I am not dropping $40 on breakfast everyday.

  30. leah says:

    AJ & Erin – Thanks for another mouthwatering list! I’ve been to a few of these restaurants but have not tried too many of the dishes listed — probably because of the associated price tags! These numbers (and options) may be shocking to people who lack understanding of the fine dining options available at WDW, but to me, this speaks volumes for the value of the Disney Dining Plans! For those who want to dine in style like this each day of their vacation, you can’t beat the Deluxe DP. Now, if I only had an Uncle Moneybags… :-)

  31. Jason says:

    We have never been charged or splitting a plate.

  32. Galloping Gourmand says:

    Wow, I love this post. Let’s click off the things I’ve had.

    Brown Derby’s Cobb Salad. It’s a cobb salad, that’s all I can really say about it.

    And that’s it… but each of those dishes looks fantastic.

  33. marie says:

    Mark D.: The deluxe plan includes 3 meals and 2 snacks. So if you had supper at 70$, and breakfast at Chef Mickey (30.88), you’d still be 1 meal and 2 snacks “ahead”, even with the 2013 prices. Granted, that does not fit everyone’s way of eating, but it can work.

  34. Mark Hickson says:

    Mahalo Erin,
    Now I have my dining list for my October trip!
    A Hui Ho!
    Mark Hickson

  35. Lynne says:

    @JT when is the California Grill closing for renovations? I would hate for you to be disappointed.

  36. Mark D. says:

    @marie The restaurants above are all signature which would require 2 TS credits leaving you with only one. So even if you have Chef Mickey’s everyday (which is one of the most expensive breakfasts you can have), you would only really be ahead the snacks.

  37. kirsty says:

    I have eaten at Bistro de Paris on the dining plan in the past, glad they decided to go back on it, like fultons!

  38. kirsty says:

    Mark D, you can get lunch on the deluxe plan you are not limited to breakfast and dinner. We do the deluxe plan and sometimes get breakfast (we are doing chef mickeys and tusker house) and sometimes we do an early lunch and then a late dinner. You truly make your money back and this year we are going during food and wine and all of that food is included for snacks, so that is a great great value!

  39. Danica says:

    California Grill does not close until January 6, 2013, and will reopen late summer – too late for us to go in May/June :(

  40. Mark D. says:

    Kirsty, you get 3 table service credits per day. If you eat at a signature restaurant like the ones in this post, they cost you 2 table service credits and you would only have 1 remaining for that day plus the snacks.

  41. Corey says:

    One of my favorite posts from the last year. Glad you are showcasing it again.

    Now, if I couldn’t go to V&A (someday, my friend…someday), I would have to choose Flying Fish. While several of your choices are phenomenal, I fell in love with FF last visit. I will say that I will never pay $69 there though…simply because I would never choose mussels over the cheese plate there.

    Brown Derby is a close second, though I have only had the Grapefruit Cake there. (mmmm…grapefruit cake)

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