Eater today showcased Atera's 24-course feast in its "60 Second Tasting Menu Menu" series, which you should check out because it's stupendously gorgeous (and delicious). Here, we'll take a look at exactly how much it costs to dine at Matthew Lightner's two Michelin-starred tasting table because you can easily spend more here than at Eleven Madison Park, depending on how you play your cards.
Atera's uber-naturalistic tasting, which might include edible rocks and other chic edibles that wouldn't look out of place in a fancy terrarium, starts at $195. That's up from the restaurant's 2012 opening price of $150 — it's not uncommon for young, ambitious venues to employ prices that are lower than they could or should be as a de facto "friends-and-family" discount.
So your dinner date for two, after tax and 20 percent tip, will cost $503, which is the same as you'll spend at Blanca in Bushwick or on the long tasting at Atelier Crenn in San Francisco — if you want to be technical about it you'll actually spend a dollar less at Crenn due to that city's slightly lower sales tax rate.
Atera's wine pairings -- $90 back in 2012 -- are now $135. Add on two of those and you're at $851. Lightner offered a $50 caviar supplement yesterday for golden osetra roe from Bulgaria. So throw that in the mix and you're now at $979 for two, which is $25 more expensive than your standard dinner for two with wine at Eleven Madison Park. Still a BUY? You bet.
Want to upgrade to the reserve pairings at $250? Better get two of those if you want to make it to date four. Just be prepared to see your final bill rise to $1,276. Lightner says about half of his guests order standard pairings, while one fifth of those opt for the reserve.
Keep in mind that the cost of dinner at Atera, like at any restaurant, will likely rise in the long run. "Depending on cost and what direction we take in the products we get, we will likely change the menu price," Lightner said via email. Also keep in mind that you now pay for dinner after your meal is over; Atera for a while played around with pre-paid dining along the lines of Brooklyn Fare or Next.
So what say you, fellow Eaters? Is Atera a BUY, HOLD OR SELL at these prices? Leave your thoughts in the comments section and play around with our fun interactive chart to see precisely how much you might spend (Mobile users: click here for the graph).
· All Atera Coverage on Eater [~ENY~]