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Tiki Central Forums » » Collecting Tiki » » Doctor Z's 3-face Mug Collection
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Doctor Z's 3-face Mug Collection
Sabu The Coconut Boy
Tiki Central Poet Laureate

Joined: Aug 20, 2002
Posts: 2793
From: Carson, California
Posted: 2004-04-11 03:15 am   Permalink

I've always been amazed at my friend, Doctor Z's, extensive collection of 3-face or "bucket" mugs from various tiki restaurants. He's painstakingly collected them one-at-a-time from Ebay auctions, garage sales, thrift stores, and donations from friends, but he always seems to be finding new ones. Personally, these squat mugs have been a terrific source of obscure restaurant names for me to look for postcards with on Ebay. I asked permission to photograph and post them here for the benefit of other collectors and he gave the ok - so it gives me great pleasure to finally present them here.

Doctor Z didn't ask specifically, but I know that he would be interested to learn of other 3-face mugs that you might own or have heard of that aren't in his collection. We both seem to think that he's only scratched the surface on this collecting niche. As I said before, it's amazing how the new ones just seem to keep cropping up.

Also if any of you can fill in some of the history of this style mug, that would also be helpful. It seems that a lot of Chinese Restaurants that went Polynesian in the 1960s seemed to use this mug, but I don't know a lot more. What drinks were predominantly served in the 3-face mug? Were they mostly a California phenomenom, or are there more from other states that we don't know about? Anyway, without any further ado, here are the mugs:



Two versions from the Bamboo Chopsticks in Bakersfield, CA.


The Four Seas in Seattle, WA


The 5 Lanterns in Whittier, CA. I remember when Doctor Z found this at a local garage sale. I've never seen anything else from this restaurant. Very obscure.


Harvey's Lake Tahoe


The Hawaii Kai, New York


The Islander, Stockton, CA


The Islands - Phoenix, AZ


The Kapu Kai - Cucamonga, CA


Karate Punch


The Kono Hawaii - Santa Ana, CA


The Lanai - San Mateo, CA


The Latitude 20 - Torrance, CA


The Leilani Luau - Fresno, CA


The 3-fish version from Malios - Santa Cruz, CA


Mark Thomas' Outrigger - Monterey, CA



2 variations of the highly sought-after Pea Soup Anderson's mug from California (Is there really a Chuck-E-Cheese version?)


The Polynesia - Seattle & Spokane, WA


The Tikis - San Gabriel, CA


Trade Winds - Oxnard, CA


Zombie Village - Oakland, CA


Tall, thin version from the Islander - Stockton, CA


Tall, thin version from Jimmy Wong's - Chicago, IL


Tall, thin version from The Tonga Room - San Francisco, CA


Imperial Imports version of the 3-face mug - this one from an unknown Bali Hai.


JP Co's version of the 3-face


And yes, even Orchids of Hawaii had a version.

Ok, Collectors: Any other versions?

Sabu

[ This Message was edited by: Sabu The Coconut Boy on 2004-04-11 03:18 ]

[ Edited by: Bora Boris - Re-uploaded some missing pictures and replacement pictures. - 2011-10-02 17:20 ]


 
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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11159
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2004-04-11 08:07 am   Permalink

Wow, I am floored! I had seen some of these, but here are so many more, and from the rarest restaurants to find ANY vessel from:

Zombie Village, The Lanai, Kapu Kai, The Tikis, The Outrigger, Lattidude 20...

What a great librabry of esoteric places. Now you have to show the three mugs that the three masks depict!


 
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Tiki Royale
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Dec 06, 2002
Posts: 891
From: The Aloha Room in Beautiful Belmont, CA!
Posted: 2004-04-11 10:52 am   Permalink

Thanks for the pics Sabu,
I always like to see the various logo/type treatments used for various resturaunts.
I love the good ol' 3 face/bucket mug. They're great for everyday use. I think my current favorite is the tall thin version I picked up recently from the Tonga Room.
Aloha,


[ This Message was edited by: tiki royale on 2004-04-11 12:23 ]


 
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Cool Manchu
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 03, 2003
Posts: 561
From: San Jose, CA
Posted: 2004-04-11 12:05 pm   Permalink

What an amazing collection of planter mugs!

Here is one that isn't on the list. It tends to be pretty common in our neck of the woods.



There is the green planter mug from the Islander in Stockton, but I haven't found one of those....yet....



 
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Humuhumu
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 22, 2002
Posts: 3623
From: San Francisco
Posted: 2004-04-11 1:21 pm   Permalink

Andersen's Pea Soup??? Now, that just goes to show how much everyone was hopping on the tiki bandwagon back in the day. Hilarious.

Very cool to finally see all of these posted. Dr. Z -- I always keep my eyes peeled for bucket mugs for you while I'm out thrifting, and I find them all the time, but only for Harveys. Oh well.

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MauiTiki
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Joined: Jan 20, 2003
Posts: 693
From: A rock in the middle of the Ocean
Posted: 2004-04-12 10:15 pm   Permalink

way cool to see the different versions. Now which is the rarest and worth the most?

I'd like to see someone do the same thing with the Leilani McCoy mugs. I've got 4 of the same mug but they are all different. Some one sided, some two, some orchids of Hawaii, and others with Leilani across the bottom and others...
There must be a rare version that is worth more than $5.


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PolynesianPop
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 2368
From: Corona, Ca
Posted: 2004-04-13 09:18 am   Permalink

Quote:

On 2004-04-12 22:15, MauiTiki wrote:
Now which is the rarest and worth the most?



Interesting question MT. Typically, what is the rarest is not worth the most -- this applies in almost all forms of collecting. In this particular case, I would say that the Anderson's Pea Soup mug is the rarest in this style, but I would also argue that it is NOT worth the most; at least not to a tikifile.

I've mentioned in other threads before how I'm perplexed by the consistent sale of Tiki Bob mugs on eBay to the tune of $80 and up and yet, its not a rare mug at all. As a matter of fact, I don't think there's ever been a time where there wasn't at least one being offered up for bid.

Now, why would that be worth more than say a Kahlua Hut mug, which is more rare? My theory is new collectors know the Tiki Bob mug and so, want to add it to their collection and don't know some of the other rarer mugs. And so, they pay out of their nose to put a "known" mug in their collection because they must have it (to legitimize their collection) while they let a more rare mug go simply because they don't know what it is. To the new collector, a rare mug is an unknown mug and this "ignorance" (for lack of a better word) keeps the value of that mug down.

How many times over the years have you learned about the history of a certain mug and thought, "damn, I saw one of those at a flea market for $5 bucks a year ago. If I had known, I would have bought it..."

Happens to us all.....



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He who dies with the most broken mugs WINS!

[ This Message was edited by: PolynesianPop on 2004-04-13 09:21 ]


 
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GECKO
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 01, 2002
Posts: 1049
From: South Sea Arts Honolulu
Posted: 2004-04-13 12:14 pm   Permalink

didn't know that Tiki's made bowls??? I thought just the black Moai. Thanks for da info

 
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Trader Woody
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 2301
From: Tiki Manor, Forest of Bowland,UK
Posted: 2004-04-13 12:20 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2004-04-13 09:18, PolynesianPop wrote:
Now, why would that be worth more than say a Kahlua Hut mug, which is more rare? My theory is new collectors know the Tiki Bob mug and so, want to add it to their collection and don't know some of the other rarer mugs. And so, they pay out of their nose to put a "known" mug in their collection because they must have it (to legitimize their collection) while they let a more rare mug go simply because they don't know what it is. To the new collector, a rare mug is an unknown mug and this "ignorance" (for lack of a better word) keeps the value of that mug down.



Well, the Tiki Bob mug is such a classic that most mug collectors feel that they have to have one in their collection. It's instantly recognisable, sticks in the memory, and there's really no mug like it (apart from the the knock-offs, many home-made mugs etc).

It's one I've been wanting myself for years & years but since I won't go above the magic $30 for a mug, it's not a part of my collection. Just to prove the way the Tiki Bob mug winds it's way into the brain, my wife and I actually argued over whether I had one or not. She was utterly convinced that I had one!

Anyway, back to Dr Z's collection - that really is something special. I suppose you got your PHD in 3-face mug studies, Doc Z?
Great stuff - really pushing the boundries there.

Trader Woody


 
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Phillip Roberts
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 09, 2003
Posts: 1601
From: OAHU/Seattle
Posted: 2005-09-03 5:33 pm   Permalink



[ This Message was edited by: filslash 2008-09-15 15:02 ]


 
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the drunken hat
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Dec 20, 2003
Posts: 331
From: Modesto, CA
Posted: 2005-09-30 09:53 am   Permalink

Quote:

On 2004-04-11 08:07, bigbrotiki wrote:
Wow, I am floored! I had seen some of these, but here are so many more, and from the rarest restaurants to find ANY vessel from:

Zombie Village, The Lanai, Kapu Kai, The Tikis, The Outrigger, Lattidude 20...

What a great librabry of esoteric places. Now you have to show the three mugs that the three masks depict!





here you go bigbro it only took a year and a half!!







all of these mugs are from the stockton islander.

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[ This Message was edited by: the drunken hat 2006-12-03 16:45 ]


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Doctor Z
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 01, 2002
Posts: 1613
From: The Hale Moana Lounge, Torrance, CA
Posted: 2006-12-03 3:32 pm   Permalink

It's been quite some time since Sabu first posted my 3-face collection, and I've added a few more since then that I'd like to share with y'all. There aren't many, as these guys are gettin' few and far between nowadays, but as you can see, they're still out there!

New locations:


Castaways - Manitou Springs, CO



Chungs - Cleveland/Fairview Park, OH



The Golden Wheel - Yakima, WA



Hawaiian Gardens - San Jose, CA (thin version)


New versions:


Hawaii Kai - New York, NY (thin version)




Tonga Room - San Francisco, CA (thin version - marked on bottom, not side)



The Islander - Stckton, CA (fully glazed version)


Many folks have brought this one to my attention. While I do have it, I don't consider it part of my 3-face collection. It is a cool mug nonetheless!


The Moonraker - The Seabreeze Motel, Pacifica, CA


I know there are different versions of these that I don't have (yet...) (Trade Winds, Oxnard; Islander, Stockton; and Tonga Room, SF, in particular) - anybody have any different locations?
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Tiki-Kate
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 21, 2003
Posts: 1700
From: Yucaipa, CA
Posted: 2006-12-03 4:10 pm   Permalink

Great additions to the data base of bucket mug knowledge, Doctor Z.

Is the fully glazed Islander mug the slim size or regular?
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Bora Boris
Mr. Unreasonable

Joined: Mar 25, 2005
Posts: 2585
From: Boogie Wonderland
Posted: 2006-12-03 9:01 pm   Permalink

Wow! Thanks for sharing.

 
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TikiJosh
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 01, 2005
Posts: 735
Posted: 2006-12-04 12:25 pm   Permalink

Very cool. And quite a nice collection. I particularly like the 3 fish one. Neat variation on a pretty standard design. Thanks for sharing!


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