The high-priced degustation now has a modern, more democratic cousin: multicourse meals that offer variety, value and choice for less than $50. Thomas Keller, the renowned chef who has crafted $250 nine-course tasting menus at Per Se in New York and The French Laundry in Yountville, Calif., most recently has opened a restaurant that offers a $45-per-person prix-fixe menu. Ad Hoc, also located in Yountville, celebrated its first anniversary in September, even though it was ...

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