Are these the world’s most exclusive restaurants in 2023?

For Shakespeare’s Count Orsino, it was music that was the food of love. For us, it’s a far simpler equation: food is the food of love.

When it comes to fine dining experiences, gastronomic flights of fancy and multi-sensory encounters with flavour, texture, aroma and finesse, there is a small but esteemed handful of dining spaces in the world which elevate the act of eating to a veritable artform.

These restaurants go above and beyond in every aspect of the culinary sphere. They deliver not only dishes which have been perfected to deliver gasp-inducing taste sensations, but a journey through ingredients and kitchen wizardry, scene setting and luxury which transports diners to new heights of pleasure.

A new age of creative luxury gastronomy

We’re living in a truly exciting time for hospitality businesses offering the unique and unusual to UHNW foodies and gastronauts – there are more establishments wielding the coveted three Michelin stars (surely the uppermost honour any chef patron could wish for) than ever before, and imaginative restaurateurs are pushing the envelope of possibility in an array of stunning ways.

From new notions of traditional fine dining, new cuisines being champions and infused with opulence, and new immersive experiences being launched each year, 2023 certainly is a great year for food. One of the key differences from the great restaurants of yesteryear lies in the fact that contemporary high-end restaurateurs have remembered that the finest of dining need not be a stuffy, pompous or formal affair. The greatest restaurants in the world today are – by and large – joy-inducing experiences, infused with fun, nostalgia and creativity that make them a sheer pleasure to encounter.

Naturally, there are a few flashes of the old formality present in the world’s best restaurants – there’s a time and a place for old school luxury, after all. But the rise of molecular gastronomy and the introduction of culinary illusions, theatricality and even VR and AR in many high-end restaurants display a new playfulness at work… and going out for dinner is most definitely a new playground for the world’s elite seeking a good time.

Let’s take a closer look at the restaurants making waves this year, offering truly exclusive dining experiences which elevate eating to new heights of wonder.

Masa, New York City

With a tasting menu priced at $595 per person – wine flight not included – this opulent NYC restaurant is naturally a hub for A-listers, celebrities and the world’s most elite foodies on the lookout for gastronomic excellence. Widely regarded as home to some of the greatest sushi on Earth, rivalling many of Tokyo and Kyoto’s most esteemed sushi restaurants, Masa is the brainchild of chef patron Massa Takayama.


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Takayama believes in delivering the purest, simplest yet most exquisite flavours across his menus, achieved through the use of only the finest and freshest ingredients. The offering changes daily depending on what fresh produce has been brought into the kitchen, ensuring diners are likely to experience different iterations on high-end sushi and sashimi classics each and every time they visit. Masa is an exercise in perfection, borne of a lifetime of dedication and training that is the hallmark of every great sushi master. It’s an opportunity to immerse oneself in tranquillity in the heart of the metropolis, encountering flavours, textures and sheer culinary artistry that’s assuredly a truly transformative experience from the first taste to the last.

Ultraviolet, Shanghai

The culinary scene in Shanghai, China has always been regarded as among the most innovative in the world, and Chinese high society certainly has a way with opulent experiential dining with all the bells and whistles attached. Ultraviolet, which opened last year, quickly rose in the ranks to become one of the most exclusive restaurants on Earth, offering a tasting menu priced between $570 and $900. What do diners get for the price? Well, nothing less than a multisensory encounter with artistry and excellence, based around a single restaurant table for a maximum of ten guests.


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Each tasting menu is based upon 10 or 20 sampling dishes, each of which showcases new and traditional ingredients prepared and presented in a truly innovative and inventive manner. The experience doesn’t start and finish with the cuisine, however. Light shows, music and olfactory additions to the dining encounter take guests on an often overwhelmingly psychedelic journey said to be quite unlike anything else in the world.

Ultraviolet is led by three Michelin starred chef Paul Pairet, who wanted to create a restaurant that demonstrated the highest levels of attention to detail and guest experience. To hammer this intention home, the restaurant has three staff members per diner attending to every imaginable need – it’s the highest employee-to-patron ratio found in any restaurant, anywhere.

Maison Pic Valence, Paris

It comes as no real surprise to find a Parisian restaurant on this list – of all the capital cities in the world, it’s perhaps the French one which is held in the highest esteem when it comes to fine dining, opulence and culinary excellence. Maison Pic Valence is taking classic French cuisine well into the 21st century, playfully exploring ingredients from the south of France and wider Mediterranean region and bringing them into a nine-course tasting menu that elevates occasionally humble food to the headiest heights of luxury.


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Run by Sophie Pic – the latest bastion of an esteemed culinary dynasty and one of the only three Michelin starred female chefs in the world – Maison Pic Valence offers an exemplary journey through the flavours of France. Diners can expect dishes including banon goat’s cheese berlingots, venison marinated in sake lees, rouget in saffron broth, plump squab in an array of Gallic sauces, and some of the most enviable chocolate desserts ever created by the in-house team of chocolatiers.

Add to the mix that the dining room is set in a 130-year old restaurant amidst gorgeous Mediterranean-inspired gardens, Maison Pic Valence is a bonafide French fantasy not to be missed.

Sublimotion, Ibiza

It wasn’t so long ago that the Balearic island of Ibiza was synonymous with hedonism, partying and arguably the most iconic EDM scene on Earth. Today, it’s pulling in an altogether more well-heeled crowd seeking gastronomic perfection, and Sublimotion – possibly the most Insta-worthy fine dining restaurant in the world – is leading the charge.

Sublimotion’s offering is a truly exclusive affair, and that is more than reflected by the $2,380 per person price tag. In fact, it’s currently the most expensive restaurant anywhere in the world, but those who have visited this hallowed contemporary establishment have done nothing but sing its multitudinal praises. Opened and owned by two-star chef Paco Roncero, Sublimotion is available for bookings during the summer season only, and those lucky enough to score a table are promised a wholly new dining experience quite unlike anything else.


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Each diner is served by a dedicated team of twenty five specialists, bringing plate after plate for a 20-course tasting menu that covers three hours of multisensory exquisite encounters which truly go above and beyond the ordinary. Alongside the peerless dishes – which take their inspiration from Mediterranean seafood and the molecular gastronomy playbook – diners are treated to laser displays, VR and AR components, projection mapping in the ultra-modern dining room and a dinner which at times feels more like a theme park ride than a restaurant. Sublimotion strives for (and achieves) the world’s greatest culinary/entertainment experience, blazing entirely new trails for others to follow.

Restaurant De L’Hôtel De Ville, Switzerland

The Swiss have always been trailblazers when it comes to luxury, and many of the world’s most exclusive and classical fine dining establishments can be found nestled between the Alps and alongside the country’s spectacular lakes. Restaurant De L’Hôtel De Ville, which offers food of truly remarkable quality, precision and finesse, is one such example, making it one of the most highly-esteemed eateries on Earth.

The eleven course tasting menu is widely regarded as one of the holy grails of European fine dining, and for the (relatively) humble sum of $415, diners can enjoy dish after dish of specialties ranging from mussels in saffron to fillet of lamb, Salers steak with wild pepper and Imperial Ossetra caviar. It comes as no great shock to see that the Michelin inspectors have repeatedly granted the restaurant three stars, and chef Frank Giovani also oversees an incredible wine cellar and a 40-page wine menu, providing flawless pairings for each delectable morsel.

Guy Savoy, Paris

American readers may know the name from the chef’s outstanding Las Vegas restaurant, but today we’ll be looking to the original (and arguably the best) of the Savoy brand, situated in its spiritual home near the centre of Paris. Guy Savoy is a legendary venue, and one which spawned countless contemporary fine dining enterprises – most notably the multi-Michelin starred restaurants of a certain Gordon Ramsey, who was trained by Savoy himself.


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The Paris home of Guy Savoy draws in gastronomes from across the globe, each in search of culinary perfection delivered with classical style and a contemporary panache. The 13 course tasting menu is the gold standard of its kind, and for $626 (without wine flight), diners can enjoy a celebration of game meats, fish, seafood, caviar and foraged fungi amid truly luxurious settings. The ‘festival of lobster’ is regarded as among the most opulent dishes to be found anywhere on Earth – quite simply, nobody does it quite like Savoy.

Ithaa Undersea, The Maldives

The Maldives has always been high on the list of must-visit luxury destinations, as its aquamarine waters and sugary beaches have an allure entirely of their own. The opening of Ithaa Undersea last year sent considerable ripples through the high-end dining scene, and quickly became one of the most instantly-recognisable restaurants in the world for one clear reason: like something from a Jules Verne novel, here was the planet’s first ever underwater eatery.

Situated on the beautiful Rangali Island, Ithaa Undersea allows diners to enjoy beautifully prepared dishes five metres below the surface of the waves. Surrounded by colourful aquatic life and vibrant coral reefs, it would be all too easy for this $320 per person restaurant to rest on its laurels and trade off a sizable gimmick. However, Ithaa Undersea pulls out all the stops with its fine dining credentials, offering a four course lunch or six course dinner menu showcasing stunning food and a spectacular wine list.

What’s more, it looks like nothing else on Earth, and even the most averse will be getting their phones out during their meal to snap photos of their plates and setting.

Kitcho Arashiyama, Tokyo

Tokyo is one of the world’s spiritual homes of fine dining – for centuries, chefs in the Japanese capital have undertaken apprenticeships covering decades of skill acquisition, rising through the ranks to achieve absolute mastery in the culinary arts. There are six Kitcho Arashiyama restaurants throughout Japan, but the Tokyo establishment is the one currently holding the coveted three Michelin stars. Offering a sumptuous yet impossibly refined ten-course tasting menu, it’s a showcase of Japanese gastronomic excellence that’s utterly unique in its finesse and brilliance.


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There’s significant reverence to history and heritage throughout the eatery, where diners eat at low tables from traditional tatami mats, surrounded by pristinely manicured gardens and ceremonial flourishes. Presentation and timing have been given awe-inspiring attention to detail, and the seasonally-changing menu reflects the finest local and regional produce, prepared to the headiest heights of perfection. A genuine bucket list eatery, and one that no Japanese food lover should overlook the significance of.

Alain Ducasse, Paris

Fine French cuisine is rooted in history, tradition and a dedication to excellence and opulence. When Alain Ducasse opened his three Michelin star restaurant in Paris (now one of over sixty iterations spread across seven countries), his aim was to balance the old and the new, delivering unmistakably Gallic dishes with a thoroughly modern mindset.


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Considered one of the most expensive and exclusive restaurants in the world, Alain Ducasse in Paris is a truly luxurious experience from start to finish. An ornate dining room – dripping with gold and decorated with frescoes depicting mythological scenes – allows guests to immerse themselves in timeless French sophistication, and they’ll be served a dazzling array of dishes cooked to Ducasse’s exacting standards. The restaurant is renowned for its indulgent sweet courses (there are, of course, some of the world’s finest chocolatiers and pastry chefs on the staff roster), most notably the legendary rum baba dessert, delivered theatrically in a classic silver cloche.

Bob Bob Ricard Soho, London

Bob Bob Ricard Soho hit the headlines in recent years due to its ‘all in’ approach to luxury, which included a ‘Press for Champagne’ button at the table. Sparkling wines form much of the heart of this restaurant’s appeal – it sells a quarter of a million bottles annually to its UHNW diners, and it’s the only restaurant in the world permitted by Château d’Yquem to sell its Champagne by the glass.


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The other key selling point of Bob Bob Ricard Soho? That would be caviar. The London-based eatery sells more caviar than any other restaurant in the UK. Indeed, its Russo-Anglo menu features the beloved sturgeon’s roe heavily, elevating classic dishes like Beef Wellington and Coulibiac of Turbot with the opulence that quenelles of caviar never fail to bring to the table. With 16-seat private dining rooms for a truly exclusive experience, this beautifully ornate and beautiful restaurant reflects the very best of British elegance – ideal for relaxing in style during a trip to the iconic capital.

Seeking a Table at the World’s Most Luxurious Restaurants?

This rundown of the most exclusive eateries on Earth is the mere tip of an impressive iceberg – the world’s luxury dining scene is a constantly-evolving one, with new openings each year ensuring the industry is forever on its toes.

If you’re looking to book tables at the most elegant and exciting restaurants in the world, a leading concierge service can ensure that there’s always somewhere thrilling to stop for dinner. Whether you’re looking to impress clients, have a date to remember or simply expand your culinary horizons, the concierge team at Aurae Lifestyle holds the key to truly unforgettable experiences.

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