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Tiki Central Forums Tiki Drinks and Food Mai Tai-ing in Los Angeles.
Mai Tai-ing in Los Angeles.
Sabu The Coconut Boy
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 20, 2002
Posts: 2793
From: Carson, California
Posted: 2006-03-29 4:40 pm   Permalink

I have a good friend who tasted a Trader-Vic's classic Mai Tai at my house and is absolutely sold on them. (He makes the world's best Cosmopolitan, by the way, so I was glad to return the favor). He told his old man, who used to get them at the Beverly Hills Trader Vic's back in the old days and he suddenly had the craving for one again himself.

Long story short, the three of us are going to take a little Mai Tai tasting tour one night in Los Angeles. We're going to stop at Trader Vic's and then the Tiki Ti. Are there any other places within an acceptable driving distance of the two that also make a credible Mai Tai? It would be nice to add a third spot to the tour.

Sabu
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GatorRob
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 20, 2004
Posts: 1771
From: 3 hrs 33 mins to paradise
Posted: 2006-03-29 5:07 pm   Permalink

My place. Is 2,570 miles an acceptable driving distance for a good Mai Tai?


 
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Rob Roy
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Dec 03, 2004
Posts: 354
From: Ventura, CA
Posted: 2006-03-29 5:10 pm   Permalink

I did that with Zombies in LA on my last birthday. Ouch.

 
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PiPhiRho
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 1021
From: Redondo Beach
Posted: 2006-03-29 7:58 pm   Permalink

Roughly in between Trader Vic's and Tiki Ti are the Lava Lounge and the new Voodoo Lounge. Both are in locating tiki. I have not had a mai tai at either place and I would expect neither to be up to the standard of Trader Vic and Tiki Ti. That is good, too, as Tiki Ti is probably the closest you are going to find to the Don the Beachcomber mai tai.


 
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hiltiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 10, 2004
Posts: 3134
From: Reseda, calif.
Posted: 2006-03-29 10:56 pm   Permalink

Don't forget Yamashiro.Has a nice view and full of beautiful people.

 
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cheekytiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 09, 2004
Posts: 1091
From: The Haole Hut, London, UK
Posted: 2006-03-29 11:58 pm   Permalink

The Lava lounge is the place if you like your Mai Tai made with grenadine

 
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MrBaliHai
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 01, 2002
Posts: 801
Posted: 2006-03-30 12:59 am   Permalink

The Encounter restaurant at LAX used to make a credible Beachcomber-style Mai Tai, but judging by my last visit 3 weeks ago, they have gone way downhill.
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MrBaliHai
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Joined: Jun 01, 2002
Posts: 801
Posted: 2006-03-30 01:44 am   Permalink

Oh yeah, the old Ultimate Mai Tai site recommends Damon's in Glendale, although given the very mixed reviews I've read of that place over the years, I don't know how much credence I'd give it.
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Sabu The Coconut Boy
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 20, 2002
Posts: 2793
From: Carson, California
Posted: 2006-03-30 08:30 am   Permalink

I was actually thinking about Damon's too last night. At least that would make all three stops actual tiki bars. I thought about the Warehouse in Marina Del Rey too, but I think that would be a little too far to drive this time. Maybe in the future we could set up a tour that took up an afternoon/evening. That way folks could meet at certain bars for part of the tour, then stay or carpool on to the next as they saw fit.

Thanks for all the suggestions so far. Hiltiki - does Yamashiro serve a decent Mai Tai?

Sabu

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reedalong
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Aug 27, 2004
Posts: 61
From: Chicago, IL
Posted: 2006-03-30 08:41 am   Permalink

Don't sell Damon's short - if you get the right bartender (go for the oldest one behind the bar) you can get a tasty Mai Tai. That said, I still prefer TV's... it's all a matter of personal preference, I suppose.
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thejab
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 2986
From: Tradewinds Apartments, Alameda, CA
Posted: 2006-03-30 11:36 am   Permalink

I hope this doesn't ruin your plans but the Tiki Ti is closed now through April 19th.

http://www.tiki-ti.com/tiki-alert.html

I second the Damon's suggestion. At the least you could show your friend a place where a non-original, but still tasty, Mai Tai is served.


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Humuhumu
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 22, 2002
Posts: 3623
From: San Francisco
Posted: 2006-03-30 11:55 am   Permalink

Be sure to drop Beachbum Berry a line... in researching his books, I believe he tracked down some of the old school bartenders at their then-non-tiki employment. He may know of a few places off our radar that have a (possibly) good mai tai due to the influence of those bartenders.

http://www.beachbumberry.com/contact/


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Unga Bunga
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 06, 2003
Posts: 5820
From: CaliTikifornia
Posted: 2006-03-30 11:55 am   Permalink

Sabu,
How far is Bahooka?


 
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TikiSan
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 29, 2003
Posts: 253
From: O.C., SoCal
Posted: 2006-03-30 4:18 pm   Permalink

Damon's Mai Tai recipe is given in Beachbum Berry's Table Taboo:
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0943151996/sr=8-1/qid=1143764096/ref=sr_1_1/103-8997241-1640610?%5Fencoding=UTF8

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hiltiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 10, 2004
Posts: 3134
From: Reseda, calif.
Posted: 2006-03-30 5:02 pm   Permalink

Sabu, the mai tai was just fine but nothing like TV, but the view was fabulous and the food and service was great. A little on the expensive side.

 
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