Why Dinner At LA's Habitué Costs $12,000

Los Angeles is seldom thought of as a fine-dining mecca. It's a city that prides itself on its taco trucks and ramen joints, but Swedish chef Björn Frantzén hopes to change that with his newest offering, Habitué.

Chef Frantzén made his mark on the culinary world when he returned from a stint in New York City and opened Frantzén in Stockholm in 2013. Not only was the restaurant listed in the number six spot of the World's Fifty Best Restaurants, but it also earned three Michelin stars within five years, per LA Eater. Now, this world-renowned chef has decided to try his luck in the City of Angels in collaboration with L.A. chef Robert Sandberg, and their offerings sound top-notch.  

Chefs Marcus Jernmark and Robert Sandberg will offer an extended tasting menu that will be focused on micro seasonal produce, local fish, and shellfish, with one or two meat courses. Dinner will be punctuated by a selection of sweets, per their website. Dinners will be paired with libations curated by their beverage director, Max Coane. The only catch is their new place is an invite-only venue, and dinner has a hefty price tag.

An experience more than a dinner

At this time, Habitué is serving guests out of a test kitchen at a residence in the hills of Bel Air, but they should be opening a larger location soon, per Women's Wear Daily. For now, reservations are invite-only, and there is limited seating. Notably, the restaurant's chefs are unable to accommodate any dietary restrictions at this time. According to the restaurant's website, this is because of "the nature of the experience."

The restaurant currently offers such delicacies as sweet shrimp over almond wood embers with goat milk yogurt, mint, and cucumbers in sudachi sauce. You can also purchase aged musk melon from Chiba, Japan, with twenty-four-month-old guanciale, caramelized buckwheat, and hanaho blossom (via Instagram). And, as if those offerings weren't special enough already, items are served on unique one-of-a-kind pottery dishes designed by Swedish pottery maker Stefan Andersson (via Instagram). 

Does this merit a $12,000 price tag for dinner? Of course, only you can answer that question, but if you choose to go, don't worry about any additional costs or dressing up. Taxes, fees, and tips are included, and there is no dress code. If you can't get a table, check out the best places to eat and drink in Los Angeles