How does one celebrate the purchase of a $330,000 truffle? How about with the “World’s Most Expensive Organic Martini,” preposterously priced at $665 (because $666 would be evil). It’s now on the menu at vegetarian hangout Counter, and the ingredient of note is iridium, an element that the menu tells us is “believed to have powered the Ark of the Covenant” (and also “may cause irritation of the digestive tract”!) Actually, it only contains a couple of drops of the stuff, for shits and giggles (you can’t taste it; we tried). So why, then, is the drink so damned expensive?
4 pomegranate seeds: $2.49 from FreshDirect (one pomegranate yields hundreds of seeds)
¼ oz. simple syrup: 5 cents (water and sugar)
2 oz. of rose-infused Square One vodka: $14.52 (750-ml bottle for $31.99 at Astor Wine & Spirits equals $2.52 for two ounces and $12 for a dozen bodega roses)
½ oz. peach juice: $0.38 (32-ounce bottle from FreshDirect for $2.49)
1 oz. ice peach oolong tea: $5, from teany
1 drop Liquid Manna Iridium: $1.66 ($300 a half-ounce bottle; 180 drops in a half-ounce)
Candied rose-petal garnish: (see above for dozen roses)
By what we believe is our generous estimate, the world’s most expensive organic martini costs somewhere in the neighborhood of $23.76 (note: We’re writers and not mathematicians; these calculations took the better part of an afternoon) to make. The markup is about $641 — what do you tip on that? Our advice? Skip the publicity ploy and ask owner-mixologist Deborah Gavito to share her under-the-counter stash of nacho- and bruschetta-infused vodkas. Those, we can vouch, are worth every penny.