On May 1, Emperor Akihito will step down and be succeeded by his son, ending the Heisei era and starting a new period in Japanese history, which will be called Reiwa. As the first imperial changeover since 1989, this is a very big deal for Japan, and the Grand Hyatt Tokyo has decided to mark this historic occasion by offering a new hamburger at its Oak Door restaurant.
That might seem like a laughably small gesture for one of Tokyo’s finest luxury hotels, but this is no ordinary burger. Called the Golden Giant Burger, it’s a mouthwatering exercise in both quantity and quality.
Let’s start with the first of those two factors. The burger measures 25 centimeters (9.8 inches) in diameter and 15 centimeters in height. The even more shocking physical statistic is the weight: three kilograms (6.6 pounds), which makes the Golden Giant Burger hefty enough to use as an exercise dumbbell, provided you could figure out how to grip it and resist the temptation to take a bite out of it.
But the most startling number associated with the burger is 100,000, from its 100,000-yen (US$900) price.
That hefty outlay gets you a meal made with some world-class ingredients, including two different types of beef. The one-kilogram (2.2-pound) U.S. prime beef patty is topped with a sliced premium kuroge wagyu Japanese beef steak, and they’re accompanied by foie gras, cheddar cheese, Japanese-grown cherry tomatoes, and two onions’ worth of sliced onion, with even more fragrant flavor coming from the burger’s aioli sauce. When the server carries the Golden Giant Burger to your table, he’ll be accompanied by an Oak Door chef, who will freshly slice truffles before your very eyes and place them atop the burger’s fillings, before officially finishing the sandwich off by placing its top bun, treated with gold powder, atop the beefy behemoth.
The Golden Giant Burger comes as part of a set, with a salad and French fries (which appear to be full-length wedges of a deep-fried potato) included as sides. You also get a magnum-size bottle of wine, your choice between champagne or non-sparkling red or white.
The Oak Door recommends sharing the Golden Giant Burger amongst a group of six to eight diners, and will be offering the colossal sandwich between now and June 30. The burger is available only by reservation, which must be made at least three days in advance, ostensibly to give the restaurant time to prepare the ingredients, but with the side-benefit of giving you and your friends enough time to get hungry enough so that you can savor every bite and not leave anything on your plates.