By Mike Pomranz
Updated May 16, 2016
Credit: Courtesy of KOA NYC Restaurant

If you go with the cheap stuff you buy at the grocery store, $180 worth of ramen could feed you twice a day for an entire year. But if you’d rather take the opposite route and blow an annual ramen budget in one meal of pure excess, you can now spend $180 on a single bowl of ramen at KOA, a Japanese restaurant in New York’s Flatiron neighborhood.

Billed as “the world’s most expensive ramen” – because that’s a great way to get headlines – this fanciest (or at least priciest) take on broth and noodles gets its high cost by stocking up on the usual cadre of expensive ingredients: Wagyu beef, truffles and, of course, edible gold flakes. The meal also comes with a set of gold-colored chopsticks that Koa’s general manager says you get to take home (emphasis ours).

For those of us looking for a reason to find faith in humanity, the good news is, according to the Wall Street Journal, Koa says they have only sold two bowls of gold flake ramen since adding it to the menu earlier this month. But they also stressed that the uber-expensive soup is mostly just a way to market their restaurant. You can still get ramen for as low as a mere $14 on their regular dinner menu.

Though for 14 bucks, why not have the best of both worlds: Buy a pack of Maruchan ramen for a quarter, buy edible gold leaf flakes on the internet and boom… 24-carat gold ramen on a budget. That’s being thrifty!