The grocery store offers a variety of expensive items for a host looking to serve the finest at a party. A significant factor in a food's price is the procedure used to prepare it. Foods that require longer or more complicated processes are more highly valued.
The items most likely to drive up your grocery bill in the fruit and vegetable section of the grocery store are the organic selections. You're paying for smaller crops, specialized farming methods and different flavor. Exotic produce such as mini pineapples, heirloom vegetables and specialty apple varieties such as honeycrisp and zestar have a specialty price tag, too.
Meats and Cheese
At the meat counter, jamon Iberico is among the most expensive -- Spanish pigs feast only on one special type of acorn. Free-range and grass-fed cows require more land. Other high-priced butcher selections include filet mignon, prime rib and Japanese Wagyu beef.
Some of the finest locally obtainable luxury cheeses incorporate truffle mushrooms. Memoir, a truffle gouda, is one example. Hochy Brit, a cow's milk aged Swiss cheese, is another extravagant option.
In the spice aisle, the highest-priced selections are based on scarcity and the difficulty with which the product is obtained. For example, saffron, the world's most expensive spice, comes from a plant that produces three saffron "threads" each. One ounce equals about 13,125 threads. Whole Madagascar vanilla beans are a pricey baking ingredient. Truffle finishing salt can be priced at more than $6 per ounce.
Oils and Vinegars
The finest foods call for the finest condiments and sauces. When shopping for superior oils, it isn't uncommon to see Italian extra virgin olive oil priced at more than $6 per ounce. Truffle-infused olive oils are among the most expensive. Balsamic vinegars, another pricey product, can even top the finest wines in value.
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