16 Tiki Bars You Have to Visit
The island-inspired cocktails are making a big comeback. Check out these iconic spots plus what to order.
Frankie's Tiki Bar, Las Vegas
Let's be honest, Vegas is known for its excess and Frankie's Tiki Bar embodies that with a Polynesian twist. Pull up a stool, order the Kapu I'A and don't forget to purchase a commemorative glass to take home. Their selection is incredible.
Honi Honi, Hong Kong
Lucky enough to find yourself in Hong Kong? Head over to Honi Honi for the authentic tiki experience. Try the Dragon Fire cocktail which is prepared "blazer-style." This means the spirits are warmed and set a flame as the bartender "rolls" (pours) them between two cocktail shakers.
If Anthony Bourdain likes this place, so should you. He visited on No Reservations and rightfully so. It's the first tiki bar in Finland and best. Stick with the classics or venture out to one of their original works.
Beach Bum Barry's Latitude 29, New Orleans
It's hard to select only one place to visit when you go to New Orleans. But the arguable cocktail capital of the U.S. has this brilliant bar. "Choosing a favorite at Latitude 29 is not an easy task," says Ann Tuennerman, co-founder of Tales of the Cocktail. "You really can’t go wrong up and down the menu. But if you pushed me to pick just one I’d say the Pontchartrain Pearl Diver."
"Mahiki is a tropical escape from reality in Mayfair London. The closest you can get to holiday in Hawaii without a plane ticket," says Georgi Radev of the Spirit of Tiki Team in the United Kingdom. Check out their signature drink: the Honolulu Honey featuring Honey Cream.
Otto's Shrunken Head, New York City
NYC has hundreds of bars but Otto's Shrunken Head is the…head…of the class. Kelly and Paul from the Velveteen Lounge Kitsch-en Show know their tiki and recommend the name sake cocktail, Otto's Shrunken Head. "Great downtown vibe, friendly folks, fabulous decor and delicious (strong) drinks."
Cleveland has extraordinary bars that are under the radar on the national scene. "One of my favorite drinks ever is the Jungle Bird," says Shane McGrath, president of the Greater Detroit U.S. Bartender's Guild. You'll adore the beautifully decorated bar and patio at this midwest tiki treasure.
Smuggler's Cove, San Francisco
One of the modern kings of tiki is Smuggler's Cove in San Francisco. Camper English, founder of Alcademics.com, recommends the Jet Pilot. With a gorgeous bar like this, you can't go wrong with your selection. Grab their new book on the way out and bring some tiki home with you.
Three Dots and A Dash, Chicago
Every night this bar is organized chaos with lines wrapped around the building and energy-pumping music. It's not your typical tiki bar. Yet, the drinks speak for themselves. Order a Chief Lapu Lapu, for you and your friends, off their delightfully retro menu.
Trader Sam's Grog Grotto, Disneyland and Walt Disney WorldDisney knows how to bring fun and entertainment to any situation and tiki is no exception. With locations in both Disneyland and Walt Disney World, check out the later for an even more exciting experience. Certain drinks on the menu trigger events to happen in the bar. This could be rain, eruptions or singing by the staff. Order the Nautilus, if you don't believe me. 960 1280
Trader Vic's, Emeryville, CaliforniaJust outside of San Francisco lies the other champion of the classic cocktail era: Trader Vic's. The worldwide empire that invented many famous drinks and launched 19 locations started here. The one drink you must order is the iconic Mai Tai. 960 1280
Jungle Boy, Melbourne
A speakeasy-style tiki bar is the clever combo you find in Melbourne with Jungle Boy. You have to enter through the secret enterance in a sub shop and the bar only seats 40 so be patience if you can't get in this popular spot. Try the Zombie with an "American" style sub.
Indonesia: Loewy Bar and BistroBartender Harli Garnawan serves up "the best, stiffest drinks in town” at this nostalgic, casual bistro. The bar sticks to classic cocktails, including Jakarta's largest selection of fine single malt whiskeys. If you want to see Garnawan's technique at work, try the "king of cocktails," a classic dry martini. 960 1280
Puerto Rico: SantaellaRenowned chef Jose Santaella celebrates the roots of the island's cocina criolla in this 80-seat dining room (complete with a tropical garden) and 16-seat bar. Knowledgeable bartenders, including World Class mixologist Leslie R. Cofresi, blend specialty cocktails, including the Sandia Mojito, which pairs muddled fresh watermelon and mint with Puerto Rican white rum, lime juice and a few secret ingredients. 960 1280
Dominican Republic: Pat’e PaloThis European Brasserie is separated into 2 parts: the bar has a livelier crowd, whereas the lounge is more relaxed. Both, however, serve delicious cocktails created by bartender Pavol Kazimir in a candlelit, romantic atmosphere. 960 1280
China: Bar ConstellationThis small space in Shanghai is big on spirits with over 300 single malts for whiskey drinkers. There's also an extensive cocktail list and a World Class mixologist, Tree Mao, whose signature cocktail is called M.A.N. (Mature, Authentic and Nature). 960 1280
Germany: Riva BarFor a hip cocktail bar, its name (after a 1970’s Italian football star Luigi Riva) and interior (which invokes a wind tunnel) are bold choices, but they don't outshine the excellent martinis and champagne cocktails served up by the likes of mixologist Harry Glockler. 960 1280
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