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T

hello ... new member here ... i will be in San Francisco (Oct. 24th until Nov. 4th)and was hoping for some suggestions on what to check out. (Trader Vic's, Emeryville and the Tonga Room are on the artinerary already) ... also, any good places to buy mugs or masks?? thanks! todd

p.s. i live in Cleveland and unfortunately the statement "no tiki in cleveland" is pretty much true ....

M

TikiTodd wrote:
also, any good places to buy mugs or masks?? thanks! todd

Yes! My ebay auctions. I live in San Francisco, that counts right?

http://cgi6.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewSellersOtherItems&userid=cpt.midnite&completed=0&sort=3&since=-1&include=0&page=1&rows=25

On a more mature level, I would think about Trad'r Sam for a low-rent counter to Tonga
Room. Visiting TV's in Emeryville along with Tonga (for drinks) are the two must-sees though.

Finding mugs or masks? If you find out let me know! I just cannot seem to find places that sell them for "reasonable" prices, and the competition amongst collectors up here is pretty fierce. If you feel adventorous the Alameda Antique Fair will be Nov. 3, that is a huge event. You'll definitely find some things, but a good deal may be tougher to locate. Outside the City there are lots of options, a few of our fellow Tiki Central members do very well searching.

Good luck, and have a great visit. There are many members who live up here, someone is bound to have more info to share.

midnite

M

Don't forget the Bamboo Hut on Broadway, near Kearny. The decorations have gotten much better over the years, with a giant smoking mask, waterfall, and puffer lamps. The drinks are still pretty poor, however, but they have a good happy hour deal.

M

There is a small store on Haight St. that has some Shag and Tiki Stuff (mostly Tiki Farm Mugs, Accrutements things, etc.), so it may not be worth a trip, but you gotta hang on Haight Street anyway. May I suggest:

  1. Amoeba Records- best record store...ever!
  2. Cha Cha Cha tapas restaurant- good fun eats/sangria. Check out the Carribean religious shrines.
  3. Hobson's Choice Victorian Punch House- dozens of rums and great tropical drinks and seasonal punches.
  4. Magnolia Brewpub - good pub grub and and good...um....(this is a "four-letter-word" on Tiki Central, so I will spell it backwards): R-E-E-B.

Of course Haight St. is also packed with head shops and cool clothes, so have fun.

-martin

TikiTodd,
I'm not local to San Fran but I was just there about two weeks ago. I printed this guide from Tiki News to help me find some Tiki:

http://www.tikinews.com/suck/paradise.html

T

Great place that's not very mainstream is around 3rd and Geary called the Rhohan (sp?) Lounge. They play film footage of people surfing on the bamboo covered walls, have a lot of tiki art on the walls, and very interesting drinks. A lot ot their specialty drinks are made with a liquor called 'soju' and are really good. Of course you can also get rum there.

My only complaint is that the music is kinda loud...

I just had an e-mail from a pal of mine who is currently in SF, and took the Tonga Room recommendation,

"That Tiki bar was brilliant! We turned up at 4pm but the guy said they didn't open till 5pm so we wandered about for a bit then went back. What a cool place. Dead dark at first but then your eyes get used to it. The candle lights and the cool decor. That lake in the middle is unreal, its dead deep as well. While we were there there was a rainstorm as well, it was excellent. As there were 4 of us we got 2 Lava Bowls. The others were like, the only spirit is rum? But i said that i bet it would be dead strong. And it was! So the Lava bowls kicked started our night"

I also said that when they walk down Lombard Street, they should wave at all the houses because Midnite lives there. (So now you know why a group of drunk Scottish girls are waving at everyone on that road)

Trader Woody

[ Edited by: Trader Woody on 2002-10-25 03:38 ]

M

I also said that when they walk down Lombard Street, they should wave at all the houses because Midnite lives there. (So now you know why a group of drunk Scottish girls are waving at everyone on that road)

Trader Woody

I f I wave at every group of drunk "***" (fill in applicable nationality) I'd get nothing done! It goes with living in the City, but at times , usualy 2 am, gets tiresome.

Good to see the mates enjoyed Tonga. Without a doubt it is worth a visit for the storm effects alone. I have some family coming in next week...that means another trip there! Good news/bad news: Tonga visit, family visit.

Hope they see Fort Point (under GG Bridge) and Alcatraz as well.

midnite (Shut up out there!)

M

On 2002-10-23 18:50, TikiMel wrote:
Great place that's not very mainstream is around 3rd and Geary called the Rhohan (sp?) Lounge. They play film footage of people surfing on the bamboo covered walls, have a lot of tiki art on the walls, and very interesting drinks. A lot ot their specialty drinks are made with a liquor called 'soju' and are really good. Of course you can also get rum there.

My only complaint is that the music is kinda loud...

Well, Mel, I'm sorry If I have to disagree- I think the Rohan kind of sucks. It's become a yuppie hangout in my so called "sleepy" neighborhood. It's very sleek and minimalist inside. I went for "tiki night", and it was lousy. Here I was, busting out my best hawaiian shirt and TK necklace, and the place is full of beautiful people in black. Soju (about 18% ABV) is a Korean rice wine, a little like sake, and it does make for some tasty drinks. But last time I checked, they did not have a full alcohol licence, so it was beer, wine and soju. So while the drinks are good, you pay six bucks for a cosmo that's half strength.

The food was up and down, with some of the korean-tapas style dishes being very good, but some needing work.

And then the house music came on (as you mentioned) at earsplitting volume. Drove us right out. In fact I had Otto pull it from his Tiki News event listing email. Believe me, I wish it was good, because it's only 4 blocks from my house.

If yer coming out to my neck of the woods, just stay on the bus and keep going to Trad'r Sam's.

-martin

T

Wow Martin, I had no idea you'd had such a bad experience there. I went a few weeks ago (my first and only visit) to meet a friend who is opening a surf shop across from the zoo. (Aqua Surf Shop, 2830 Sloat Blvd. 415.242.WAVE - there's your plug, Dev!!) It was a weeknight, so it wasn't TOO crowded, and not "meat marketish" at all. We didn't eat there, so I don't know about the food, but the 6 soju drinks I tasted were yummy. It turns out that the artist of some of the tikis hanging on the wall is a friend of my friend who's opening the surf shop. All in all, it seemed pretty laid back, except for the music, but the overall experience for ME was enriched because of the company I was in.

Sorry you didn't like it, Martin :(

T

I agree with TikiMel. I've had nothing but lousy experiences at Trader Sam's - lousy drinks, lousy music, full of drunken frat boys and stoopid Marina girls....yuk! Makes me ill just thinking about it. It was barely tolerable when it was an unknown dive 10 years ago. Now it's completely INtolerable.

On the other hand, all three of my visits to the Rohan Lounge were quite pleasant. It's not a tiki bar, so I don't think it's fair to compare it to one. Yeah, it's kinda yuppie, but so what? The food's decent, the bartenders are knowledgeable about the soju drinks, and I LIKE downtempo electronica.

I don't think I'd make it a destination, but if I'm in the 'hood and feel like stopping somewhere, I wouldn't hesitate to go there.

T

I went to Trader Sam's once. I ordered a drink from the mean bartender, thought the drink tasted awful, looked at the run-down decor, and was driven away by the clientele, mostly frat boy jock types who can't act like gentlemen after a couple drinks.

No reason to go back. I have yet to check out the Rohan but it can't be any worse then Trader Sam's.

M

Dean, Mel, Rich: Fuck the lot of you! :)

No, I'm kidding, of course. Here's the thing: Rohan, like I said, has some good food and the drinks are tasty. True, too, that it's unfair to compare it to a tiki bar. It's definitely a different experience.

But:

  1. I don't care if the electronica is up, down, left, or right tempo: Unless I'm dancing, I like to hear the person that's a foot away from me. I just don't like having to scream when I want drinks with friends. This is why I generally drink earlier, because I hate noise, and I hate standing to drink for a long time. So I'm usually blistered by 9:30 pm, passed out by 10, and up early. It's the way Ben Franklin would have wanted it.

  2. Stupid Marina Chicks (Midnite is obviously excluded) are just as irritating at Trad'r Sam's as they are at Rohan. They suck everywhere. Sam's can get lousy when it's crowded with frat slobs. But if you go early, grab one of the nice round seats with a few friends and a scorpion bowl, that's the beginning of a good night. The TC Crawl in 2001 started there and it was great. 60% of the people inside were TC, so there was plenty of seating and it was good times. This year's crawl ended there, and it was packed. It was still pretty cool 'cause I was lit up, but I prefer it quiet.

  3. You just have to know what drinks are good at Sam's. Many of them are sickly sweet grenadine bombs. It's trial and error. And you know what: Every drink I had at the fabled Hala Kahiki was a sickly sweet grenadine bomb. I probably missed the good ones. Sure wouldn't stop me from going there again. Yeah, Sam's is close to my place, too, so there's "the convienence bias".

You know, Rohan has been quiet lately. I hope it hasn't fallen to the danger of being trendy and then forgotten. I certainly hope they make it, because the neighborhood does benefit from a little variety among the cell phone dealers, mattress stores, and chinese restaurants.

-martin

T

I completely understand you're wanting to stay away from crowded, loud bars, Martin. A couple years ago when the dot-com boom was at a peak I would rarely venture to San Francisco on weekends cause there were so many obnoxious people dressed all in black. (And they weren't goths!) I would usually go out on mon-thurs.

Things have improved a lot thanks to the downturn. Many of those loud yuppies in black moved away. I wonder where they went? New York? Denver? Somebody let me know so I can keep away from there. Now it's more like the San Francisco of the early 90s except some of the best old restaurants (Jack's) and bars (Crown Room at the Fairmount) are gone, victims of the boom period. There are fewer clubs, too - no more Purple Onion :(

I also try to seek out quieter, more intimate bars. Daytime bar hopping is one of my favorite ways to pass a day in the city. On foot of course!

M

Just remember that the Lilo Lounge is no longer.

M
mig posted on Mon, Oct 28, 2002 7:25 PM

Dangit... we should all meet up this weekend. Who's around?

I wanted to scare up some people to greet Uncle Arty (in town tonight, one night only!) but didn't have my act together in time... in fact, even I can't make it.

Who's around this weekend? Want to scheme something?

mig

I'm 100% down Mig.
I've been hankerin to party myself!

Who the hell else is in???

T

Mig - Depending on which day, I'm in.

Smily - what do you mean LiLo is closed??? When did that happen??

Martin - no worries. I just had a good time at Rohan with my newly acquired surfer friends and their friends' tiki art. (I'm still fairly new to this, so sometimes I'm easily amused by the little things. Or maybe that's because I'm from Texas....)

Mig wrote:

T

Hello Tiki Lovers!

Thanks for all the info about TIKI BARS in SAN FRAN .... went to the BAMBOO HUT on friday nite ... stopped in HAWAII WEST for happy hour yesterday ... tonight (tuesday), looks like the TONGA ROOM for happy hour (will get there around 6:30) and might stay to see just how bad the band is! (do they play on tuesday?)... tomorrow (wednesday) the plan is to hit TRADER VIC'S for a drink or two ~7:00 ... these plans are not set in stone but almost positive that is where i will be ... if you are in the neighborhood or just craving a MAI TAI then stop by and say "Hi" ... i will check my email later today if anyone wants to get ahold of me ... or just look for a mid 30's white guy 5'10" tall with dark hair and a goatee ... will be with a buddy (and possibly a girl he is dating) ... does that help at all?? didn't think so ... ok ... tonight i will wear my purple and black with white flowers hawaiian shirt ....

todd

M

On 2002-10-28 19:25, mig wrote:
Dangit... we should all meet up this weekend. Who's around?

I wanted to scare up some people to greet Uncle Arty (in town tonight, one night only!) but didn't have my act together in time... in fact, even I can't make it.

Who's around this weekend? Want to scheme something?

mig

Noooooooo! Damn, piss & shit! I'm hella into going out, but I've got my play this weekend. I could meet up late Friday after the show, but Sat, I've got a cast party, and Sunday I have to strike the set. It's the last weekend, though, so if anyone is into next weekend or beyond, please let me know. But only if we go to Rohan. :) And move it to Tiki Events, or Hanford will bust our asses.

Can't wait to get home and watch Maury,

Martin

M

The Li Lo Lounge in SF closed about a year ago. They sold off the various tiki's and decorations to the customers.

Thanks to everyone who gave suggestions about where to go in San Fran! The trip was great! Made it to the TONGA ROOM (fantastic!), TRADER VIC'S (nice), THE BAMBOO HUT (cool), and HAWAII WEST (nice people).... THANKS AGAIN! ... Todd

TT

If you're go-ing to San Fran-cis-co, be sure to weare a tiki-loha shirt...

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