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Tiki Central Forums General Tiki 1965 Poly Pop Holiday Magazine Restaurant Awards
1965 Poly Pop Holiday Magazine Restaurant Awards
Or Got Rum?
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 29, 2009
Posts: 338
From: Wisconsin
Posted: 2013-03-01 2:06 pm   Permalink

I could not find an appropriate place for this item, but thought is was interesting in the fact it pretty much follows Sven's Evolution time line...but this year was very strong, perhaps the beginning of the end. Also note that Trader Vic's-SF has been a winner EVERY year since the award started...IN 1952! The article that went with this was an interview of Silas Spitzer who started the award, so I would say it's legit...but WOW.





 
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Or Got Rum?
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 29, 2009
Posts: 338
From: Wisconsin
Posted: 2013-03-02 10:46 am   Permalink

In thinking more about this, it was not the point to show "hey, look what I found", it was to illustrate against the layman's public image of Polynesian Restaurants. Some would simply dismiss them as a fad or "theme only" establishment, that will run it's course, which in most cases it did. But all restaurants tend to have a shelve life, especially if operations are not constantly tweaked and improved....demonstrated by the longevity of Mai Kai and Canlis'. The fact these awards given were done by the haughty "Old Boy Network" critics that drilled down over repeat visits to determine the sales and operations performance. These were not awards from a hip magazine looking for the cutting edge, they were done with knowledge and pride in recommending the best. To have the Mai Kai, Trader Vic's, Don the Beachcomber, and Canlis' among this group of other Culinary powerhouses (some the benchmark of Restaurant excellence in history) is fairly impressive. Yes, I know how the saying goes..."Critics (opinions) are like A-holes, everyone has one and they all stink" , but as a Restaurant operations veteran I am suitably proud of the TIKI genre I adore. OKAY, Rant over....OGR

 
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Hale Tiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 19, 2004
Posts: 1798
From: Pittsburgh
Posted: 2013-03-02 10:59 am   Permalink

I think the original posting gets the point across, but thanks for the clarification. This is an interesting piece tying in both "tiki" restaurants and some of the places found in Classic Dining.

Thank you.


 
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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11197
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2013-03-02 11:25 am   Permalink

I know of only two of the "every year winners" that are still in operation, and I was fortunate enough to eat at both of them on one of my photo safaris for Pete Moruzzi's "Classic Dining" book:

Both notably are in New Orleans - Gallatoire's and Commander's Palace, both stellar experiences of classic dining!

When seeing how many of those on the steady winner list have disappeared, an interesting point is to consider the ephemeral nature of the restaurant business in general - Polynesian supper clubs being just one of many succumbing to what seems to be in the nature of the business: To fall out of fashion.


 
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Or Got Rum?
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 29, 2009
Posts: 338
From: Wisconsin
Posted: 2013-03-02 12:38 pm   Permalink

Ironically Sven, The only other on that list still open is Karl Ratzch's, but I'm sure you don't like German food Locke-Ober Cafe in Boston closed in 2012. OGR

 
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JOHN-O
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 16, 2008
Posts: 2694
From: Dogtown, USA
Posted: 2013-03-02 2:07 pm   Permalink

FYI, the Windsor in Los Angeles still exists (kind of).

It's now the Prince, a Korean bar that was one of the stops on my
Koreatown Bar Crawl a few years ago.

From a decor standpoint, it's exactly the same as it was in 1965 (or even the 1950's for that matter).

If you want to check it out, go soon. My understanding is that the building that houses it was purchased by Korean developers so who knows how long it's gonna last.


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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11197
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2013-03-02 2:22 pm   Permalink

Good info, but we were talking about the "Every Year Winners" list, John-O...let's hope there are some more survivors on the main list than just The Windsor! The Four Seasons in New York certainly has lost nothing of its luster - they found it entirely uninteresting to appear in Pete's book, and an intolerable idea to have a photographer stalk their hollowed gourmandizing grounds while their moneyed clientele ingests its morsels

 
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JOHN-O
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 16, 2008
Posts: 2694
From: Dogtown, USA
Posted: 2013-03-02 2:42 pm   Permalink

Ooops !!

On a related note, I picked up
"Classic Dining" at Soap Plant a few weeks ago. Great stuff, I especially enjoyed the chapter on Dome of the Sea in addition to the Mai Kai one.

Did you get comped dinner in all of the places that got the publicity. What a life !!


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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11197
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2013-03-02 3:12 pm   Permalink

Tell me about it! Of course, we HAD to photograph a glamour plate of their offerings at each location! The spreads at the Oyster Bar and the Del Bar were among the best....I ate TWO of those 80 $ steaks at the Golden Steer....couldn't let them be thrown away now!

Let's just say it came close to my expedition with Jeff Berry to document the Kahiki in 1996 where we spent the whole day photographing the place a bit, then having a couple of cocktails, then photographing some more, than eating anything from the menu we liked, then shoot some more: A once-in-a-lifetime dream-come-true gig. THAT would be my dream career.


 
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Hale Tiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 19, 2004
Posts: 1798
From: Pittsburgh
Posted: 2013-03-02 3:17 pm   Permalink

Hahahahaha. You lucky dog, you!

 
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Swanky
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 03, 2002
Posts: 5058
From: Hapa Haole Hideaway, TN
Posted: 2013-03-04 09:49 am   Permalink

DtB CHicago boasted in their menu of having won the award for I think 3 years straight, but I don't know what year that was. The Mai-Kai, copting DtB Chicago made it a point to get the award and keep getting it. I think they had it 5 years in a row at least.
_________________

Announcing Swank Pad and Crazy Al's Molokai Maiden!


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