If you’re looking to fritter away a small fortune, you may want to peruse the bar menus of some of the more exclusive hot spots around the globe. The thousand-dollar and over cocktail club is an elite group of spirits that will cost you no less than 10 Franklin notes and can be found on five continents.
The champion of these is the $12,040 Winston created by Joel Heffernan of Club 23 in Melbourne, Australia and named after Churchill, the man who once said, “My rule of life prescribed as an absolutely sacred rite… the drinking of alcohol before, after and if need be during all meals and in the intervals between them.”
In 2013, The Winston even made its way into the Guinness Book of World Records as the most expensive cocktail in the world, taking the title away from the $9,230 Salvatore’s Legacy, invented by cocktail legend Salvatore Calabrese for the Playboy Club in London.
Though both concoctions have held the official title as the priciest beverage around, unofficially, the most money that’s ever been thrown down for a single drink was a very cool $50,000 on the Siberian ice terrace of Moscow’s Reka restaurant. The concoction included 60ml of Cognac Croizet 1858 Cuvée Leonie, another Guinness Records titleholder as the most expensive cognac, Grand Marnier Quintessence, V.E.P and three diamonds from Italy’s Crivelli jewelers.
Don’t start booking your flights to Russia just yet — the sale was one-time auction at the restaurants opening festivities. But don’t worry, there are plenty of elixirs that come with prized baubles worth boarding your private jet for and others still that use the rarest bottles on the planet.
A couple of years ago, we rounded up the most expensive cocktails in the world at the time, but nothing is forever (not even the diamonds that pop up like daisies in many of these absurdly expensive cocktails), and so our list has changed and expanded. Take a look at these cocktails and pretend that you, too, are capable of such ridiculous conspicuous consumption.
10. Mai Tai — $1,036
The Merchant Hotel, Belfast
For £750 euros (or about $1036), you can enjoy possibly the most expensive drink on all of the Emerald Isle. The Merchant Hotel in Belfast serves up its notorious cocktail, made with the same ingredients as the first-ever Mai Tai, with the original recipe as made by Trader Vic in 1944. The drink is made with two ounces of 17-year-old J. Wray & Nephew Rum — only 24 bottles of the rum exist — shaved ice, juice of a fresh lime, half of an ounce of Holland DeKuyper orange curaçao and French Garnier orgeat syrup, and finished with a quarter-ounce of Trader Vic’s Rock Candy Syrup and a sprig of fresh mint.
9. Bon Fire — $1,037
Skyview Bar, Burj Al Arab Hotel, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
As the name suggests, this drink has some heat, perhaps in a tribute to its desert setting.
Havana Maximo aged Cuban rum is blazed and combined with smoke essence, and bitters. In addition, the drink’s fragrance is enhanced with kaffir lime leaves and orange zest. Dried fruits and brown sugar sweeten the deal. All this and views of the Dubai skyline make the cocktail amost worth it — but at 3,810 AED? Not really.