@Orik - Oliva? More query is where is the substitution taking place. The economic point is fully congruent with mine - the three-star plus class of restaurants is much more expensive than it used to be but there are still a lot of places to buy a hunk of dry aged beef for $200 (when it used to be $100 in 2009 and in 1999 was barely available outside a steakhouse) or a big piece of duck or more bluefin than ever and there are lots of those places that are full. There's a story about bad economics, and those economics leading the the rise of the tasting menu, the decline of a la carte at the top end, and global trends, fine dining restaurants being special events for most and the tasting menu more reliably delivering on the special event promise, that has lead to a change in composition at that level, but it's not like it's particularly difficult for me, an outsider, to randomly stab a continental place on the Michelin list or to quickly look at an Mouthfuls thread to discover that Ai Fiori or Le Coucou or Beatrice Inn serves venison. It's more expensive than it used to be, and life in big cities has outstripped inflation, but that's the modern condition, and lots of incomes have outstripped inflation and, while most incomes haven't, those incomes that do are concentrated in Manhattan.
But it seems that there was never a class of restaurants serving venison or aged beef at an affordable, go out for dinner on the regular, as a non-oligarch, price. Otherwise, Momofuku Ssam Bar wouldn't have been a big deal.
Maybe there's a story that seats have not kept pace with interest, and that has priced out some people who used to fill more plentiful seats, but these are all discussions about something other than the ability to order squab.
Ultimately, the solution is just to move to Montreal.