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Tiki Central Forums Locating Tiki Lani Kai, New York City (SoHo), NY (bar)
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Lani Kai, New York City (SoHo), NY (bar)
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 28, 2009
Posts: 170
From: Los Angeles
Posted: 2011-02-23 10:51 am   Permalink

The Tasting Table NY newsletter said that Lani Kai is now serving lunch, plus happy hour from 4 p.m.-7 p.m. with bar snacks under $5 and drinks for $8.

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Pittsburgh pauly
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 31, 2010
Posts: 449
From: Pittsburgh
Posted: 2012-09-21 06:32 am   Permalink

According to their Facebook page:

"After two wonderful and rewarding years we are deeply saddened to announce Lani Kai has been sold and is closed. Due to the demands of other existing business's and future projects we were not able to give Lani Kai the time and focus it, and our customers, deserve. We would like to thank a loyal and talented staff and everyone of you that came to enjoy our touch of paradise.


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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 26, 2002
Posts: 291
From: Brooklyn, NY
Posted: 2012-09-22 6:23 pm   Permalink

This is a shame. It was only a few blocks from my office so I used to meet people there for a drink quite often. Even last week, they made no mention of the closing. Anyone know the complete recipe of their "Bitter Wench"? It's an excellent drink. Here's how it was described in the menu:

the bitter wench
Bourbon, demerara rum, Elemakule Tiki Bitters and Angostura Bitters

PDF of the menu:

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: Dec 13, 2002
Posts: 378
From: New York City
Posted: 2012-09-26 4:37 pm   Permalink

Yes, apparently it was a huge surprise for everyone, possibly including the employees. One of our own TC members reported that he went on the Monday before closing, and it was business as usual. It happened to be one of the fantastic "Tiki Mondays" hosted by Brian Miller, where he and a guest bartender from local bars would serve up original and classic tiki libations, with happy hour prices for some drinks for the first hour. Oftentimes a liquor sponsor would throw in a pupu platter for guests to knosh on.

The next day it was simply shut down and closed. Some digging around revealed that it to become a lesbian bar, possibly by members of a lesbian reality show. What associations the bar has with the show I'm not sure. I read that they were selling items the following Saturday. I peeked around and they were only selling plants and the teak chairs used in the dining area. I didn't have any heart to buy anything. We were told that the nice "Lani Kai" hanging sign was to be resurfaced and reused for the new bar.

In retrospect, I'm not sure if Lani Kai was ever doing booming business. I heard that Fridays and Saturdays were very busy, but I've been there on a Friday and it wasn't that busy. To me, Brian Miller's Tiki Monday was by far the busiest time they had.

I've met a lot of great bartenders there, and seen them come and go at Lani Kai. I was glad to take and meet up with local and out of town TC members here. We had a lot of great drinks there. Tiki Mondays will be sorely missed around here in New York.

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Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 25, 2004
Posts: 1129
From: NYC Area
Posted: 2012-10-25 10:28 pm   Permalink

sad face.


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