Wednesday night was the first of five extravagant banquets at hoity-toity restaurant Eleven Madison Park, where acclaimed Chicago chef Grant Achatz has brought his culinary circus to town to recreate some of the greatest hits from his menu at Alinea. Tickets for the Bacchanal cost almost $650 including tax and tip, and sold out immediately, after which some entrepreneurs started scalping tickets for twice that amount. Was it worth it? If the Internet's taught us anything, it's that you can't put a price on an opportunity to tell the world about all the amazeball things you put in your precious mouth-hole.

According to reports from the NY Times and FashionIndie, the five hour dinner consists of 24 courses and is marked by Achatz's signature offbeat irreverence. A chocolate pinata smashed onto the table of hand painted sauces? An apple taffy edible helium balloon? “An alligator with sunglasses? Hah! Now I’ve seen everything.” Squirt some hot bile on your Jiffy Pop, here are some of the high points from the two reviews:

  • "As soon as I’d checked in at the door of Eleven Madison Park on Wednesday night, the host directed me to the trough." (The New York Times)
  • "There was a course that tasted like fresh snow, served inside a glass ball, set on top of a bed of sand." (FashionIndie)
  • "Somebody would laugh, and you’d look over to see why, and they’d look up at you and grin. This happened again and again." (The New York Times)
  • "Delightfully nostalgic, the dining tables were covered in dried fall colored leaves, freshly fallen from theoretical trees." (FashionIndie)
  • "By the end of the night, I had to shuffle my way through a crackling tide of downed foliage just to visit the men’s room." (The New York Times)
  • "It was the type of meal for those who can share the important things in life together — like the conviction that 5 types of explosively flavored ginger served on pin needles are a divine gift." (FashionIndie)
  • "The transformative power of the Alinea + Eleven Madison Park 21st Century Limited experience has officially shot our definition of fine dining into another stratosphere." (FashionIndie)
  • "You inhale the cheap-marijuana smell of a smoldering branch of oak leaves used to impale wild Scottish woodcock tempura." (The New York Times)
  • "Birds and beasts had been procured from remote countries, and sea monsters from the ocean. On the margin of the lake were set up brothels crowded with noble ladies, and on the opposite bank were seen naked prostitutes with obscene gestures and movements... Nero, who polluted himself by every lawful or lawless indulgence, had not omitted a single abomination which could heighten his depravity..." (Tacitus)

Nice work if you can get it! The title of the NY Times review, by the way, is "Slight Rebellion Off Madison: Alinea Drops In," a nod to J.D. Salinger's short story Slight Rebellion off Madison, which became the basis for The Catcher in the Rye. You know Holden would have Foursquared and Tweeted and Instagrammed the shit out of this.