This Soup Cost Almost $700 For A Single Bowl. Here's Why

There are certain dishes, such as an incredible steak or a perfectly cooked plate of crab legs, that diners are willing to pay a serious premium for. However, soup generally doesn't fall into that category. While some soups can contain pricier ingredients, in general, they tend to be fairly low-cost additions to the appetizer section of most menus. That is, except for a particular soup served up at Talon Club, a VIP private gaming room at The Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas, Nevada. Of course, that will add a whopping $688 to your total bill if ordered (via The Manual).

What exactly allows this simple bowl of soup to command such a high price tag? Well, the cost really comes courtesy of one particular ingredient. The soup served up at Talon Club features cordyceps, a type of mushroom often dubbed "caterpillar fungus" because of its unique long, thin shape and growing methodology (via Verywell Health). This rare ingredient, which requires incredibly particular growing conditions in only certain parts of the world, must be flown in to the culinary team at The Cosmopolitan, hence the staggering price tag for the bowl of soup. Cordyceps can cost $45,000 a pound and each bowl of soup packs in a quarter ounce of the pricey fungus. It's basically like adding a generous dollop of caviar to your dish!

What makes cordyceps so special and desired?

Cordyceps' picky growing conditions is one of the main factors behind the high price tag for this ingredient, but simply being expensive isn't the reason that diners at Talon Club are flocking to this pricey soup. Corydyceps actually have a lot of health benefits that have been examined over the years, and some cultural ties that have Vegas visitors betting on the dish. The simple ingredient has a reputation for boosting immunity and stamina, and has even been said to act as an aphrodisiac and possess anti-aging properties (via The Manual). Additionally, they are thought to potentially boost exercise performance, battle inflammation, and some say they even offer anti-tumor effects and the ability to help reverse certain side effects linked to cancer therapy (via Healthline). Talk about a powerhouse ingredient! With those kind of benefits, it's no wonder that Las Vegas diners might be tempted by the pricey soup.

In addition to the cordyceps, which are the star ingredient in this dish, the soup features Chinese dates, Silkie breed chicken, and Longan berries. These specialty ingredients combine for a delicacy intended to entice Las Vegas diners. In fact, while you might assume it's rare for guests to opt for this particular menu item, an executive chef at The Cosmopolitan asserts that the soup is ordered about five times per month by diners (via CNBC).