Have you ever thought about how much the world’s most expensive meat costs? If you have, I’m sure you never thought it could be worth four figures. Sixth generation Frenchman Alexandre Polmard is one of the most exquisite butchers and sells the most unique and expensive meats. Polmard’s family founded its business in 1846, and it’s continued the trade ever since.
The process by which they cure the steak is called “hibernation,” storing the meat securely for any period of time. During this method, cold air is blown at 120 kilometers per hour onto the beef while it sits at -43 degrees Celsius. The meat comes from a very special cow raised in Saint Mihiel, France, by the Polmard family. It’s called Blonde Aquitaine cattle. This rib steak (2000 vintage cote de boeuf) costs up to $3,200. At this price, this must be some of the most delectable meat any steak-lover will ever try.
During a seven-course lunch at Caprice, the Hong Kong Four Seasons Hotel’s two-Michelin-starred restaurant, the Polmards’ 15-year-old beef was served. The lunch was served in a private room at the chef’s table, and cost $700 per person, not including the wine. Talk about living luxuriously.
For all the meat lovers and food enthusiasts, this couldn’t sound like a more exciting meal, especially if you have a spare $700 to spend on what I would call the lunch of a lifetime. If food isn’t your passion, however, I can’t imagine ever spending that much on one meal. Food this expensive is such a questionable topic, because while it might taste amazing for the short time it’s in front of you, after that 2-hour meal it’s gone for good. I could not be a bigger advocate for eating high quality food, but only to an extent. I can’t justify spending that much money on one piece of steak, especially when considering the dire circumstances of many around our world today.
There are too many people in the world who would never have the funds to spend this much on a piece of steak, let alone any one item. Money doesn’t grow on trees, and in some ways it seems obnoxious to even consider buying this steak before thinking about those who wonder when they will next eat. No cow’s meat is so valuable that it’s worth spending a fortune on. One must consider giving that money to those who truly need it. More so, if you look at statistics, the percentage of individuals who are actually able to afford a meal at this price is so small that a part of me can’t understand the importance of curing this special meat at all. I wonder if it could really taste that much better than the average cost of beef at some of the most well regarded steak restaurants. At a point it becomes excessive, and for those who can afford the meat it’s not about the taste, rather about the image one attracts when spending this sum of money.
As a food lover myself, I really do value the art of cooking and enjoyment of a truly wonderful meal. However, it’s the presentation and the creativity of a dish that I appreciate, more than knowledge that my beef came from the most elite cow. There is a skill that comes along with cooking, which food lovers must recognize and appreciate, because the ability to present a beautiful and delicious plate of food comes with years of practice and dedication.
I recognize the Polmard Family for their skill and dedication to this advanced type of butchering, and I commend them for continuing to share their passion. However, their talent will never reach a huge percentage of the world. Foodies who might pay more than average for a meal most likely cannot afford this type of expensive meat. Though its accessibility would lessen its value, I think it would be worth a lower price if it meant people who truly love food could appreciate it as much as the Polmard family does.