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New York's $200 French Fries Offer 'Escape' from Daily Life


Chef Frederick Schoen-Kiewert serves The Creme de la Creme Pommes Frites, the world's most expensive french fries, according to the Guinness Book of World Records, at Serendipity 3 restaurant New York City, New York, U.S., July 23, 2021. (REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz)
New York's $200 French Fries Offer 'Escape' from Daily Life
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The agency that watches inflation in the United States, the Federal Reserve, might have to reconsider the cost of food after visiting a restaurant in New York City.

The restaurant, Serendipity 3, serves the world’s costliest french fries. The restaurant can be found in Manhattan’s Upper East Side, a neighborhood known for its high living costs.

French fries are long, thin pieces of potato that are cooked in fat at a high temperature.

Serendipity 3 is well known in New York City. Many famous people, including Andy Warhol and Marilyn Monroe, have eaten there. Singer Cher even wrote something for the restaurant’s cookbook.

Serendipity is a really "happy place," said Creative Director and Chef Joe Calderone. "People come here to celebrate, to really escape the reality of life sometimes."

Chef Joe Calderone serves The Creme de la Creme Pommes Frites, the world's most expensive french fries, according to the Guinness Book of World Records, at Serendipity 3 restaurant New York City, New York, U.S., July 23, 2021. (REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz)
Chef Joe Calderone serves The Creme de la Creme Pommes Frites, the world's most expensive french fries, according to the Guinness Book of World Records, at Serendipity 3 restaurant New York City, New York, U.S., July 23, 2021. (REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz)


Serendipity 3 already claims the world record for the most expensive hamburger, at $295. It also claims the world record for priciest ice cream sundae, a cold sweet treat, at $1,000.

And on July 13, the Guinness World Records credited the restaurant with the costliest french fries in the world.

The creation is named “Crème de la Crème Pomme Frites.” It begins with Chipperbec potatoes. The restaurant briefly cooks the vegetables in boiling vinegar, an acidic liquid, and champagne, a special alcohol. Then they are cooked two times in goose fat. The bird’s fat makes the potatoes crispy on the outside and light and airy on the inside.

The fries are topped with gold that a person can eat. They are also topped with truffles – a rare and tasty fungus that is very costly.

"Truffle is the main star here," said the restaurant’s Corporate Executive Chef Frederick Schoen-Kiewert.

Like many restaurants, Serendipity was closed during the COVID-19 health crisis. Calderone and Schoen-Kiewert thought the specialty fries would be a good way to announce the restaurant’s return. It reopened on July 9.

The move is working. There is an eight- to 10-week wait list for the fries.

"It's been a rough year and a half for everyone, and we need to have some fun now," Calderone said.

I’m Gregory Stachel.

Angela Moore reported this story for Reuters. Gregory Stachel adapted it for VOA Learning English. Ashley Thompson was the editor.

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Words in This Story

expensive adj. costing a lot of money

hamburger n. a flat, usually round cake of finely chopped beef that is cooked and served usually in a roll or bun​

potato n. a round root of a plant that has brown, yellow, or red skin and white or yellow flesh and that is eaten as a vegetable​

french fries - n. a long, thin piece of potato that is fried in deep fat​

crispy adj. pleasantly thin, dry, and easily broken

roughadj. difficult or unpleasant to deal with​

chefn. a professional cook who usually is in charge of a kitchen in a restaurant​

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