Korvosa, City of Fangs
One of the most expensive restaurants in Korvosa, the Crested Falcon caters to the dining habits of the city’s elite. Open only once a week, its menu of specialized, high-class meals changes each time its doors open, with special ingredients, recipes, and in some cases, even chefs being brought in exclusively for the week’s offerings. For the Crested Falcon, no expense is too great and no effort too grand in providing its clientele with a unique culinary experience that they’ll never forget. Diner satisfaction is guaranteed — if a customer says that they have eaten one of the Falcon’s meals before (and can verify this in a magical Zone of Truth near the lobby entrance), then they do not have to pay for their meal.
On the topic of payment, the Falcon has one other surprise for new customers — all of their prices are kept secret. Patrons are free to order any of the rare, gourmet dishes they want, and only find out the cost of their meals when it comes time to settle their bill.
To ask for the price ahead of time is a serious social faux pas, witnessed by dozens of nearby nobles and wealthy socialites. However, this pales in comparison to the embarrassment at being unable to pay your bill in full. Diners unfortunate enough to suffer this fate end up magically compelled to work off their debt, usually in the form of washing dishes or taking out the trash, but sometimes escalating to more public displays such as working as the Falcon’s coat clerk, or carrying a sandwich board outside advertising the Crested Falcon’s next opening night.
Should a customer refuse to cooperate, the Falcon’s owner reminds them that the penalty for dining without paying is a swift arrest by the Korvosan Guard. Further refusal to work off one’s debt results in a short stint in prison, a hefty fine (always at least double what the meal would have cost), and a lifetime ban from the restaurant. Ironically, those who cannot pay the city’s fine often end up sentenced to a few days of hard menial labor, usually in the form of sweeping the streets in front of the Crested Falcon.