FEATURES | MUSIC | BOOKS | DRINKS | FORUMS | GAMES | LINKS | ABOUT


advertise on Tiki Central

Celebrating classic and modern Polynesian Pop
  [Edit Profile]  [Edit Preferences]  [Search] [Sign Up]
[Personal Messages]  [Member List]  [Help/FAQ]  [Rules]  [Login]
Tiki Central Forums » » General Tiki » » JOHN-O's Zombie Road Trip...
Goto page ( Previous Page 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 Next Page )
JOHN-O's Zombie Road Trip...
Big Kahuna
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 11, 2007
Posts: 2355
From: SoMass
Posted: 2011-10-02 5:16 pm   Permalink

OK, Buddy! The deli's on my list of places to hit on my next trip & both TVs. Got any other ideas? I fly out 4 weeks from today!

 
View Profile of Big Kahuna Send a personal message to Big Kahuna  Email Big Kahuna     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
bigtikidude
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 10, 2004
Posts: 8944
From: Anaheim,Ca.
Posted: 2011-10-02 10:41 pm   Permalink

John O,

I have found both the TV's Lounge and Downtown suitable enough to stop by for a drink if in the area.
Not that I am blown away by them, but better than a flat out sports bar.
If I happen to be in that area, should I give ya a shout?

Jeff(btd)



 
View Profile of bigtikidude Send a personal message to bigtikidude  Email bigtikidude     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
christiki295
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 09, 2003
Posts: 3818
From: LA-2547 mls east Hawaii &5500 Easter Is
Posted: 2011-10-03 1:52 pm   Permalink

Good post, John-O.

 
View Profile of christiki295 Send a personal message to christiki295  Email christiki295     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
JOHN-O
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 16, 2008
Posts: 2694
From: Dogtown, USA
Posted: 2011-10-11 5:31 pm   Permalink

On to Northern Cal !!

Trader Vic's Palo Alto...

Not a classic Trader Vic's by any stretch, it's almost like they began work on a Silicon Valley Italian trattoria and halfway through they decided "Naw, let's go Tiki instead".



Despite the modern feel, the place is decorated with more PNG-style than you'll find in your typical Vic's. From what I understand a lot of the pieces are authentic, taken from a private collection.





Also there's a cozy neighborhood feel to the place that's a welcome change when compared to the "tourist" vibe of a Vic's like Downtown L.A.

OK, so it's not the Tiki palace of your dreams, but it is an establishment where you can get a decent Navy Grog... and in freakin' Palo Alto of all places, the land of high technology and ivory tower academics !!

Also think of it as a remote outpost of Tiki to visit when rush hour traffic from the South makes a drive to Forbidden Island impractical. And there's a cool mid-century hotel just across the way.



So how was the Mai Tai ? I'll be honest. Out off all the Vic's Mai Tais that I sampled, it was probably the least balanced, a little too much on the sweet side. It was however only $6 during Happy Hour... and in freakin' Palo Alto.

Next, saving the best for last...


 
View Profile of JOHN-O Send a personal message to JOHN-O      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
JOHN-O
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 16, 2008
Posts: 2694
From: Dogtown, USA
Posted: 2011-12-22 6:55 pm   Permalink

Let me close the Mai Tai loop on this. On to Emeryville !!…

So what took so long? Here are my excuses:

1. Based on pictures I've seen of the interior, I never felt compelled to visit. Photos always seemed to portray Emeryville TV as more yacht club style than Tiki. And those large windows allowing natural light to flood into the place, they were an affront to my vampiric Tiki nature.

2. Also I never really considered the place as original Tiki-era. Having opened in 1971, it was in this weird Tiki grey area, dating more towards the Nixon Watergate era than the JFK Camelot days.

3. And last but not least, Forbidden Island always got in my way. Ha, ha.

But what a mistake it was to procrastinate so long !! Emeryville TV is GREAT.

If every Tiki bar possesses a unique quality, to me this is the Tiki bar on the edge of the abyss. Driving down Powell St through Emeryville's Marina corridor, it's dark, really really dark. Drive too far and you'll wind up in the San Francisco Bay. Emeryville TV feels like Tiki's last stop before entering into purgatory.

Emeryville itself has a pretty interesting history. It used to have the reputation as "the rottenest city on the Pacific Coast", teeming with speakeasies, racetracks, and brothels during the Great Depression days.

Driving up to the entrance, you're greeted by an old-school porte-cochere…



The restaurant itself is made up of many different rooms, almost a labyrinth of Tikiness in the tradition of places like the Mai Kai and Hala Kahiki, albeit on a somewhat smaller scale.



And the hesitation I had about the large windows? Well at night they were more like portals into the dark void of the SF Bay rather than an indication that the 21st-century lay just outside. I don't think I would ever visit this place during the daylight hours (is it even open then?)



You know I used to think that Tiki restaurants (vs. just bars) were a post mid-century anachronism, the whole faux Polynesian food concept being lost on contemporary diners. To my surprise however this place was packed !! In the dining area you had people dressed for the occasion and in the bar area a younger crowd enjoying cocktails and appetizers like this was the latest "hip" spot.

And I know the Tropicals were popular as I was seated at the bar and witnessed first hand the high-speed mixology. The bartender was a Mai Tai making machine as I saw one "1944" after another being made with the speed of an assembly line. You'd think the quality would suffer as as result, but honestly this was the best balanced Mai Tai of the 4 TV's I visited.

There's also a feeling of historic Tiki lore and mythology throughout the place. Homages like this to the original Hinky Dinks…



And talking with bartender, there's fascinating historical stories behind many of the items of decor. Just ask about the large sea turtle inscribed with names or the chair hanging off the ceiling. Interesting these stories haven't been documented on TC before. (Next time, I must take notes).



If Trader Vic's spirit is still alive and well in the 21st Century (and in CA), I think it must live here.


 
View Profile of JOHN-O Send a personal message to JOHN-O      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
bigtikidude
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 10, 2004
Posts: 8944
From: Anaheim,Ca.
Posted: 2011-12-22 7:24 pm   Permalink

Glad you finally made it John O,
I've been twice, and do want to get back some day.

Jeff(btd)



 
View Profile of bigtikidude Send a personal message to bigtikidude  Email bigtikidude     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Chuck Tatum is Tiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 12, 2011
Posts: 1674
From: Southern Cailifornia
Posted: 2011-12-22 8:39 pm   Permalink

John-O bringing the content!

 
View Profile of Chuck Tatum is Tiki Send a personal message to Chuck Tatum is Tiki      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
JOHN-O
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 16, 2008
Posts: 2694
From: Dogtown, USA
Posted: 2012-01-04 9:33 pm   Permalink

A while back someone commented to me in a Tiki bar discussion…

"You know I really like the Tiki scene, but I wish it was just a little bit more (racially) diverse."

I had to think about that for a while but then realized... "Hey you're right !!".

I later found myself in this (undocumented until now on TC) Tiki bar in San Francisco's Sunset district.



(Forgive the poached photos, I forgot take pictures).

Lot's of diversity here (Asians > WASPS) but the Zombie left a lot to be desired.

Lesson learned: The best type of "diversity" is the one enjoyed though the alcoholic fog of well crafted cocktails.

"Cab driver, take me to Smuggler's Cove."


 
View Profile of JOHN-O Send a personal message to JOHN-O      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
telescopes
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 06, 2007
Posts: 569
From: Palm Springs
Posted: 2012-01-05 09:37 am   Permalink

Quote:

On 2012-01-04 21:33, JOHN-O wrote:

Lot's of diversity here (Asians > WASPS) but the Zombie left a lot to be desired.

Lesson learned: The best type of "diversity" is the one enjoyed though the alcoholic fog of well crafted cocktails.

"Cab driver, take me to Smuggler's Cove."



I agree totally. We've discussed this before via email, but my final thoughts ... as of now... are that the tiki scene is made up of what it is. And that is probably okay. I have a few latino friends who are attracted to tiki, but to be honest, even after years of lurking here they still seem confused.

Not to derail this thread, but I don't you think tiki might really be a fantasy most congruent with white-european culture? That's not to state that people of other cultures won't find tiki culture attractive, the dream of a "Bali Hai" seem to fit well with what many white Americans or Europeans of the last century hoped to find as an escape to their own need to be an "island".

None of what I wrote means anything and should not be taken as a diatribe. Thus, I agree, the best type of diversity is the one enjoyed through the alcoholic fog of well crafted cocktails.

Of course, little lost tiki might disagree per the current bilge discussions.
_________________
Hola versus the Aloha Monster


 
View Profile of telescopes Send a personal message to telescopes      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Hurricane Hayward
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 07, 2008
Posts: 681
From: 16 miles from The Mai-Kai
Posted: 2012-01-23 09:57 am   Permalink

If you want to see diversity, check out The Mai-Kai on any random night when there's no organized Tiki event going on. Sure, it's a tourist attraction, and that accounts for a lot of customers. But the local crowd also crosses many ethnic boundaries. They may not be total geeks about it like us, but many different cultures really love the place.

Mahalo from the melting pot that is South Florida.


_________________
The official blog of The Hukilau

Featuring The Mai-Kai Cocktail Guide


 View Profile of Hurricane Hayward Send a personal message to Hurricane Hayward  Email Hurricane Hayward Goto the website of Hurricane Hayward     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Chuck Tatum is Tiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 12, 2011
Posts: 1674
From: Southern Cailifornia
Posted: 2012-01-23 12:06 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2012-01-23 09:57, Hurricane Hayward wrote:
If you want to see diversity, check out The Mai-Kai on any random night when there's no organized Tiki event going on. Sure, it's a tourist attraction, and that accounts for a lot of customers. But the local crowd also crosses many ethnic boundaries. They may not be total geeks about it like us, but many different cultures really love the place.

Mahalo from the melting pot that is South Florida.






But they all have one thing in common
they all carry guns!


 
View Profile of Chuck Tatum is Tiki Send a personal message to Chuck Tatum is Tiki      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
JOHN-O
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 16, 2008
Posts: 2694
From: Dogtown, USA
Posted: 2012-01-23 7:13 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2012-01-23 09:57, Hurricane Hayward wrote:
If you want to see diversity, check out The Mai-Kai on any random night when there's no organized Tiki event going on...


Actually I experienced that first hand when I was hanging out at the Mai Kai's Molokai bar, Friday night during Hukilau 2011 (while most of the Tiki peeps were off-site at the Bahia Mar events). It was a diverse crowd for sure, probably the most African Americans and Latinos I've ever encountered in a Tiki bar. And they were obviously locals, everyone was dressed too well for them to be tourists. The anticipation and excitement of everyone waiting to be seated was infectious.

And then I returned back to the Bahia Mar where it was 99.99% white folks (not that there's anything wrong with that).


 
View Profile of JOHN-O Send a personal message to JOHN-O      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Hurricane Hayward
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 07, 2008
Posts: 681
From: 16 miles from The Mai-Kai
Posted: 2012-01-23 8:59 pm   Permalink

Kern Mattei, The Mai-Kai's GM, recently told me that among his favorite VIPs who are regulars at the restaurant are Don King and The Rock, who both live nearby.

Now, those are guys I wanna party with.



 
View Profile of Hurricane Hayward Send a personal message to Hurricane Hayward  Email Hurricane Hayward Goto the website of Hurricane Hayward     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
JOHN-O
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 16, 2008
Posts: 2694
From: Dogtown, USA
Posted: 2012-03-26 06:19 am   Permalink



 
View Profile of JOHN-O Send a personal message to JOHN-O      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
JOHN-O
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 16, 2008
Posts: 2694
From: Dogtown, USA
Posted: 2012-03-26 06:19 am   Permalink



 
View Profile of JOHN-O Send a personal message to JOHN-O      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Goto page ( Previous Page 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 Next Page )
U-Moderate:
  
v1.5

[ About Tiki Central | Contact Tiki Central | Advertise on Tiki Central ]
(c) 2000-2014 Tikiroom.com (tm), Tiki Central (tm)

Credits & copyright infomation