Looking to take your spouse or significant other out for a swanky meal? Missouri's most expensive restaurant is in this modest St. Louis home and is called Elaia. It may also be one of the best meals you'll ever eat. If you're into what the restaurant calls "imaginative cuisine and extensive wine list in a relaxed and intimate atmosphere."

It made Chowhownd.com's "50 States, 50 Insanely Expensive Restaurants" list. They describe the menu as "globally inspired" and mention that the tasting menu will set a couple back $220.

I can't speak for you, but I probably would pass on Elaia, mainly because I'm not a big fan of my food being imaginative. The closest thing to a steak is the Garlic Lacquered Beef Short Rib (+20). Other items on the menu include Suckling Pig for Two, Faroe Island Salmon or Sunchoke. Each dinner costs $70, $140 with wine pairings.

If I'm paying nearly $300 for dinner for my wife and I, we're going to be enjoying the biggest steaks we ever saw cooked perfectly. It's going to be at a place like St. Elmo's Steakhouse in Indianapolis. Which by the way was Chowhound's entry for Indiana. St. Elmo's has been on my bucket list since we lived in Indiana.

Or maybe we'd check out the Chowhound's Insanely Expensive entry for Kansas, Scotch and Sirloin. Chowhound says the average check for two is $60 bucks, but with steaks priced $40 - $50, I'd say you're meal might be more in the $130 range. I'm thinking this place might be one of the more affordable places on the list.

We rarely spend over $40 dollars for dinner, and what's swanky for us has been me picking up steaks and cheese fries Texas Roadhouse, or two of Olive Garden's Tour of Italy entrees, with a bill somewhere between $50 and $60 dollars I guess you could say our palates aren't that refined. Or we just like what we like.

And that's honestly what it's all about. It really isn't about swanky meals at restaurants that you can name drop. Or eating meals that cost hundreds of dollars. If that's your jam, go for it. There's nothing wrong with enjoying prime rib from Player's or a great steak from Colton's. There's nothing wrong with enjoying pizza and a couple of cold one's at Fitter's. Or taco Tuesday at ElTapito. Enjoy your food, enjoy your life, and make some memories. That's what it's truly about, whether you spend $20 or $200 bucks.



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