Photo: Chef's Pencil

The Most, and Least, Expensive Countries for Michelin-Star Dining

Restaurants + Bars
by Alex Bresler May 6, 2024

The idea of dining at a Michelin-starred restaurant can be both exciting and intimidating. The chance to savor food that’s garnered some of the highest accolades in the world? Thrilling. The prospect of footing the bill? Panic-inducing. But dining at Michelin-starred restaurants isn’t always prohibitively expensive. From street stalls in Thailand to surprisingly affordable prix fixe menus in California, there are Michelin-starred restaurants around the world that are financially feasible for most travelers. And some destinations make finding them a lot easier than others.

International food magazine Chef’s Pencil scoured the Michelin guide to see which countries play host to the most and least expensive Michelin-starred restaurants. The team analyzed the tasting menus of every restaurant in the guide with at least one star — that works out to 3,517 restaurants across 41 countries and territories. For restaurants with more than one tasting menu available, Chef’s Pencil picked the most expensive option to use as a data point. The team then found the median cost of dining at Michelin-starred restaurants in destinations around the world, meaning the middle value when all of the prices were ordered from least to most expensive.


Photo: Chef’s Pencil

Turns out, Denmark is the most expensive country for Michelin-starred meals, with a median cost of $314 per person for tasting menus, not including drinks. In the Danish capital, Copenhagen, home to the world-famous three-star Michelin restaurant Noma, that figure increases to $443. Hong Kong, Iceland, Singapore, the US, Sweden, the UAE, Austria, Switzerland, and Norway rounded out the top 10 most expensive list, with Norway’s median tasting menu price coming in at $204 per person.

Vietnam ranked as least expensive country to go for a premium tasting menu, with a median cost of $130 per person, followed by Brazil, Malta, China, Greece, Slovenia, Belgium, Argentina, Türkiye, and Malaysia.

The analysis also offered interesting insights into the economic value of Michelin stars. The Chef’s Pencil team found that tasting menu prices increased by about $100 for every additional star that a restaurant earns. The overall median price for a premium tasting menu at a Michelin-starred restaurant is $179 per person, exempting non-inclusive costs such as wine pairings, taxes, and tips. For one-star Michelin restaurants, the overall median price for a premium tasting menu is $165 per person; for three-star restaurants, it’s $356 per person.

Learn more about the breakdown — including by city or continent — here.

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