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Tiki Central Forums General Tiki NY site to explore... King Yum
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NY site to explore... King Yum
dogbytes
Grand Member (8 years)  

Joined: Mar 24, 2002
Posts: 2241
From: seattle, wa
Posted: 2004-10-31 3:17 pm   Permalink

i was doing a search for polynesian resturants on eGullet, and found pictures and reviews for King Yum (TRT page 173), its the oldest chinese restaurant in queens

Photos & Restaurant Review

King Yum Polynesian Chinese Restaurant
181-08 Union Tpke.
Fresh Meadows, NY 96815
718-380-1918

looks pretty darn Tiki to me! the bar looks like it has a good vibe..hopefully a Tiki Centralite closer to NY can get there to check it out for us!


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donhonyc
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 13, 2003
Posts: 1173
From: The Quiet EAST Village
Posted: 2004-10-31 9:37 pm   Permalink

Thanks for posting this. I had thought about checking out this place, but based on the description in TRT I never high-tailed it out there because, although it sounded cool, it didn't sound completely Tiki. The pictures you posted tell a different story!! I already investigated how to get out there via NYC transit, and I will be getting out there ASAP! That would be so cool if there was an accesible vintage Tiki joint in one of the five boroughs besides Jade Island in Staten Island, which is a major pain in the butt to get to. I'll file a report as soon as I make my first trip out there. Aloha!

[ This Message was edited by: donhonyc on 2004-10-31 21:38 ]


 
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Sam Gambino
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Dec 02, 2003
Posts: 2199
From: www.samgambino.com
Posted: 2004-11-01 10:01 am   Permalink

Thanks for posting, dogbytes. Those are interesting pics - especially since it's an old, original place with cool tiki decor.

 
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Trader Woody
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 2301
From: Tiki Manor, Forest of Bowland,UK
Posted: 2004-11-01 3:31 pm   Permalink

Looks like an interesting mix of cultures, but certainly enough original Tiki there to satisfy most Tikiphiles.

The menu looks interesting - wonder what the mugs (particularly the Hawiian delight) look like.....



Trader Woody

[ This Message was edited by: Trader Woody on 2004-11-01 15:31 ]


 
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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11088
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2004-11-02 2:43 pm   Permalink

The (colorful) Tikis and lamps are the same than in several Fu joints that are mentioned in "Locating Tiki". All these items were massproduced by the New York Restaurant supply firm Orchids of Hawaii and offered in their catalogue since the 60s/70s up into the 90s, together with pages and pages of purely Chinese decor and lamps.

This is definetely another case of a classic Chinese Restaurant updating itself with Tiki stuff like the Wan-Q on page 62 of the BOT. They might not have thrown anything out since 1953, but that stuff was added later.


 
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donhonyc
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 13, 2003
Posts: 1173
From: The Quiet EAST Village
Posted: 2004-11-10 11:06 pm   Permalink

Aloha-

made it to King Yum tonight and I'm happy to report:

Drinks? STRONG!
Tiki? Yes
Karaoke? Oh-My-God!

Last but not least; it was relatively easy to get to from Manhattan. More details to follow. I will post in 'Locating Tiki'. C U there.


 
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tikijackalope
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 23, 2003
Posts: 820
From: KS/MO
Posted: 2004-11-18 12:38 am   Permalink

bigbrotiki wrote
Quote:
The (colorful) Tikis and lamps are the same than in several Fu joints that are mentioned in "Locating Tiki". All these items were massproduced by the New York Restaurant supply firm Orchids of Hawaii and offered in their catalogue since the 60s/70s up into the 90s...



Bigbro, about what year did Orchids of Hawaii begin to produce tiki stuff? Any chance you can convince the boys over at OA to publish some old Orchids catalogs?

Orchids masks seem to be the bastard children of tiki decor, but even the Kahiki used some of the bamboo lamps and shell lamps. There's one up for auction (not mine) right now
http://www.tikiroom.com/tikicentral/bb/viewtopic.php?topic=11861&forum=12&1

I've got quite a few older models of Orchids lamps and would love to nail down a timeline of production and a chain of manufacture (i.e. Sea and Jungle or Benson to Orchids of Hawaii to restaurant owner).


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freddiefreelance
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 15, 2003
Posts: 2990
From: San Diego, Ca.
Posted: 2004-11-18 10:06 am   Permalink

I lived in the Fresh Meadows Garden Apartments as a kid, and my family was mostly from the area (Mom was from Flushing, Dad was from Jackson Heights), I'm going to have to ask around if anyone remembers King Yum from back in the misty past...
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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11088
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2004-11-18 11:15 am   Permalink

Quote:

On 2004-11-18 00:38, tikijackalope wrote:

Bigbro, about what year did Orchids of Hawaii begin to produce tiki stuff? Any chance you can convince the boys over at OA to publish some old Orchids catalogs?

Orchids masks seem to be the bastard children of tiki decor, but even the Kahiki used some of the bamboo lamps and shell lamps. There's one up for auction (not mine) right now http://www.tikiroom.com/tikicentral/bb/viewtopic.php?topic=11861&forum=12&1

I've got quite a few older models of Orchids lamps and would love to nail down a timeline of production and a chain of manufacture (i.e. Sea and Jungle or Benson to Orchids of Hawaii to restaurant owner).



A nice challenge, good luck. Sea and Jungle and O.A. were certainly better quality Tiki suppliers than Orchids. Orchids was mostly Chinese decor, and bamboo, fake palms, waterfalls etc. They have a name now because of the Tiki mugs they made, but there Otagiri was leagues ahead.

The Orchids catalogue I have is from 1991-2, and says "Our 39th Year", so it seems they started in '62. Their address was in the Bronx, but I think they had just moved there. I talked to them on the phone from LA in the early 90s ( they closed shop in '94 ?) and they were very dissinterested in my research, saying they didn't have any old files/catalogues/whatever materials. Otto tried them too, but they were just unfriendly (I wonder if they were true to their return policy they touted in the catalogue: "Your money will be cheerfully and promptly refunded!"). We didn't have any TC agents then to send there! The back of the catalogue reads "Visit our showroom for decorating ideas!"

Their Tikis probably were wood at some point, as evidenced by Vern's Tikis he got from this local Family Restaurant that closed..(name? thread?), but even those were already painted badly, and the later ones were all lightweight fiberglass (Easily shipped! Almost no time to hang! Half the cost of originals! Come ready to install! Your customers will love them!), badly molded and garishly painted. This shipping and price advantage must have appealed to the thrifty Chinese Restaurant operators.

I agree that any Tiki Bar that has survived is a find, but I classify the standard prefab Orchids stuff as contributing to the Tiki Devolution of the 70s and 80s.

The lamps are an exception though, their craftsmanship was excellent and their resin mosaics are a lost art. In '91 they ranged between 70.- and a 150.- bucks per piece!

I doubt that O.A. has any interest in reprinting any old catalogues they might have.



 
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Jason Perlow
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Jul 04, 2006
Posts: 12
Posted: 2006-07-17 11:05 am   Permalink

I went back to King Yum recently and took some better photos of the restaurant and the food:

https://offthebroiler.wordpress.com/2006/07/17/nyc-dining-king-yum/
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dogbytes
Grand Member (8 years)  

Joined: Mar 24, 2002
Posts: 2241
From: seattle, wa
Posted: 2006-07-17 12:18 pm   Permalink

ok, now i'm hungry! thanks for the updated post.. fantastic photos..and a great read!

funny.. i found that article a couple years ago..and *poof* here you are! any other polynesian places you've been to?


 
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Jason Perlow
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Jul 04, 2006
Posts: 12
Posted: 2006-07-17 2:49 pm   Permalink

I've been to Chan's Dragon Inn and also Lee's Hawaiian Islander:

http://offthebroiler.wordpress.com/2006/07/05/nj-dining-chans-dragon-inn/

http://offthebroiler.wordpress.com/2006/07/10/nj-dining-lees-hawaiian-islander/

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sneakyjack
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 25, 2004
Posts: 1028
From: NYC Area
Posted: 2006-07-17 4:03 pm   Permalink

Jason looks like you've hit em all - ALMOST
your next mission : Jade Island Staten Island.

Heres the link:
http://www.tikiroom.com/tikicentral/bb/viewtopic.php?topic=19003&forum=4&hilite=jade%20island

I'm planning on rounding out the 4 count with a trip to King Yum and a Rehearsal dinner soon to come at Lees. thanks for your posts! as you know Chans is great place too!

Keep em comin'
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Jason Perlow
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Jul 04, 2006
Posts: 12
Posted: 2006-07-18 5:15 pm   Permalink

The pictures look awesome... I'll have to make a point of checking it out.

In my honest opinion though... King Yum wins in both the food and drink categories hands down over Lee's and Chan's. But I'm biased, obviously.

[ This Message was edited by: Jason Perlow 2006-07-18 17:17 ]


 
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kctiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 22, 2003
Posts: 439
From: Kansas City
Posted: 2006-07-19 05:07 am   Permalink

I knew there had to be a perfect egg roll out there somewhere. Guess that's why it's called King YUM.

 
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