The Anatomy of a $100 Burger

Luxury comes in many forms, and at Katsuya South Beach, an acclaimed sushi restaurant in the SLS South Beach hotel, it’s most evident in the Zeitaku Burger.

The burger, which comes in a connoisseur’s combo deal with fries and a cocktail pairing, sets eaters back a whopping $100. Since the burger is not sold on its own — in fact, it’s not even on the menu, — the price tag actually accounts for the whole deal, burger, fries, cocktail and all. So, you know... it's more reasonable!

You may be wondering, even with a stiff cocktail and a side of fries, what makes a burger deal worth $100? For starters, its creator, Chef Yoshi Migita, is known for his extravagant dishes and omakase menus, which change nightly and promise “a lavish experience for the taste buds,” a spokesperson told Men’s Journal. In the case of the Zeitaku Burger — whose name means “extravagance” and “luxury” in Japanese, the spokeswoman said — the selection of ingredients are what make this burger Benjamin-worthy.

The Beef

For starters, the patty is made with American Wagyu A5 beef, a U.S.-raised Japanese cattle breed that yields beef rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. A5 refers to a Japanese meat grading system used for carcasses with higher marbling scores (Grade A is given to those whose marbling is 72 percent and above; five is the quality grade, in this case “excellent,” the highest score available. It’s all based on equations that measure the relationship between beef marbling evaluation and classification of grade).

The Toppings

Here’s where it gets lavish: the beef patty is topped with a succulent serving of foie gras, sourced from Hudson Valley Foie Gras in Ferndale, N.Y., where ducks are hand-fed to the point of gorged perfection, their fattened livers said to offer rich, velvety texture and umami flavor.

The foie gras sits atop a fancified set of standard toppings, including sharp cheddar, Bibb lettuce, escabeche onions, heirloom tomatoes, and a creamy herb aioli.

The Bun

The best part for the ‘gram is the black bamboo charcoal bun, complete with a glimmering rectangle of gold leaf on top. This is no burnt brioche: the bread is made in house using a brioche recipe combined with food grade bamboo charcoal flour, which is added to the dough, the spokesperson said. This is done in such a way that the black bun does not overpower the flavors of the meat, liver, aioli and cheese, but with that many greasy goodies between two pieces of bread, we imagine it would be pretty difficult to overpower.

The Fries

On the side are fries that are fried three times to crispy perfection, paired with a house-made ketchup.

The Cocktail

With a burger that rich, you’re going to need a cocktail that can stand up to its flavors and still maintain some semblance of refreshment. The Hakushu Berry Julep is made with 12-year-old Hakushu whiskey, strawberry, yuzu (a Japanese citrus fruit), agave, shiso (a leaf in the mint family), and Calpico, a Japanese uncarbonated soft drink made with nonfat milk, all served over crushed ice for a refreshing, extravagant finish.

Take all those ingredients and add a good dose of hype, and you’ve got yourself a $100 burger deal. Take a peek at how the Zeitaku Burger is made in this video.