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Hope I'm not blowing anyone's cover, but look at this planning document I found on the web. The discussion about thatch roofs and Trader Vics is kind of interetsing. Wish we could get a full transcript.
http://www.scottsdaleaz.gov/Boards/DRB/_docs/2002/Sep/090502Mn.pdf

CA

hey. what is the skinny on this? I'm not much of a reader... just a carver...

i grew up in the shadow of the original TV in Scottsdale... sort of a forbiden shrine. Never got to enjoy the place, it shut down well befor my 21st birthday... even befor my eighteenth... Eighteen was the age back in the good old days of AZ.

Sorry, but I can't open that document, I get a www page started and simultaneously a download offer and...then nothin' happens.
Anyway, this might be the Trader Vic's project that Peter Seeley announced in Palm Springs...(one of them?)

Sorry Bigbro, you need a pdf file reader open the page. I have one at work, but not on my home PC and I'll be traveling the next few days. Maybe someone with a reader can open it and then copy and paste the text here.
Anyway, they alude to Trader Vics as the type of restaurant they want to open, but don't identify it as such.

H

Here's some details from the document:

It's a restaurant/bar called "Drift"
4341 N. 75th St

Owner: Greg Donely
Architect/Designer: City Spaces, Scott Wunderlich as representative

It was approved by the council, after some debate that didn't sound very contentious. Sounds like they like to keep everything southwest themed in Scottsdale, but several council members mentioned that the old Trader Vic's was something historically important to Scottsdale, and it was polynesian in appearance. They asked to have the outer walls of the building painted a different color than was proposed to help it blend into the area better, but at the same time, one of the councilmembers suggested they add tikis to the outside. Sounds like they thought it was cool. Didn't see any details about when it'll open; the meeting took place Sept. 5, 2002.


The best tiki bar is the one that's within stumbling distance of your bed
The Humuhumu Room

[ Edited by: Humuhumu on 2003-01-16 19:52 ]

Thanks Humuhumu. I was wondering if the current bar is called "Drift" because the document makes it sound like they are doing a conversion of existing space. Hopefully, someone will drive over and check it out for us.

H

Aha!

http://www.driftlounge.com/

It's too bad we didn't find this just a week earlier -- this is walking distance from where I was staying!

Edited to add:

AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH! They're open! I was right there! AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH!


The best tiki bar is the one that's within stumbling distance of your bed
The Humuhumu Room

[ Edited by: Humuhumu on 2003-01-16 20:11 ]

M

Interesting, did everyone check out the menu?

I shall be in the area in two weeks, will make an effort to view the place and partake in their board of fare. The pics look pretty good.

Anyone able to get there before that?

midnite

The place opened on January 2nd and it looks like, from the menu, that they serve their drinks in tiki mugs too. Looks like a pretty cool place. If I didn't have a personal grudge against Arizona I pack up and go check it out. If anybody does head out there be sure to bring the camera.


Spike

[ Edited by: Luckydesigns on 2003-01-17 01:04 ]

Alright LD. Give up the 411. What happened to you in AZ?

The desert stole a girl from me a couple of years back. I enjoy misplaced anger. Sounds like a good song concept huh?

L.D.,
She was not, for you. (was there a mullet involved?)

I don't know, I never met the guy.
I'm guessing probably though.

M

Munktiki mugs on the menu! Cool!

Those drinks actually look kind of well thought out. Though nowhere do I see the words "fresh lime". Could be too expensive in the desert.

Dammit, we need reports!

-martin

On 2003-01-17 10:33, martiki6 wrote:
Though nowhere do I see the words "fresh lime". Could be too expensive in the desert.

On the contrary, the place I was staying this week had trees full to bursting with ripe oranges and lemons that were amazingly sweet and tasty. My mother-in-law went to a nearby farm one morning and came back with four huge shopping bags full of oranges, for dirt cheap. I was itching to mix a cocktail.

I was moaning in misery all last night with the realization that I could have gone to this place. It's amazing that someone would like tiki enough to invest in creating a restaurant, but not know to come here to advertise it! Doesn't anyone Google anymore?


The best tiki bar is the one that's within stumbling distance of your bed
The Humuhumu Room

[ Edited by: Humuhumu on 2003-01-17 10:54 ]

T

Tiki Road Trip says:

"Drift South Pacific Fusion, 4341 N 75th St., Scottsdale, AZ (480) 949-8454
Category V - Neo-Tiki restaurant

Opened in October, 2002, this restaurant is a fusion of 1950's and 1960's design and the island style of the traditional Tiki Bars of the same era. Drift serves Tropical Drinks in Tiki Mugs, and has a South Pacific influenced menu. The owners have been “researching the history of Tiki for several years in order to get it right”."

This based on an Email the owners sent to me in September.

M

On 2003-01-17 13:54, tikibars wrote:
Tiki Road Trip says:

"Opened in October, 2002, this restaurant is a fusion of 1950's and 1960's design and the island style of the traditional Tiki Bars of the same era. Drift serves Tropical Drinks in Tiki Mugs, and has a South Pacific influenced menu. The owners have been “researching the history of Tiki for several years in order to get it right”."

This based on an Email the owners sent to me in September.

I am in Phoenix the first weekend in February and will definitely visit. If nobody else makes it there by then I will do the whole nine yards, or my close approximation, reviewing the place.

midnite

Aloha! I surveyed my Arizona gang (who are all hip to tiki madness) to see if they knew about this joint and here are a couple of replies:

"The Drift is a cheezy Scottsdale bar with a bunch of pretentious snobs.  The decor is trendy and the drinks are served in glasses that break even if you barely knock them over.  Not your typical tiki bar.  Stay away from this joint.  We all vowed never to go back.  I think we are still waiting for our drinks that we ordered Friday night. "

"Horrible.  Went there Saturday night.  Typical Scottsdale club.
Bartenders didn't know what a Navy Grog was.  Drank mediocre Mai-Tai's
when I could get them, service was awful; unless you had plastic tits.
Typical dance "oonce..oonce (high hat/bass dance riff)" music.  Awful.
Don't waste your time.

btw- no good glasses."

It seems as though maybe they didn't like it so much perhaps. That said, I'm sure I'll check it out for myself next time I'm in the area. Looking forward to more Tiki Central reports.

-Weird Uncle Tiki

How disapointing! Some of the mugs on their menu page look like they are from Munktik. http://www.driftlounge.com/ I love my Munktiki mugs! http://www.munktiki.com/
And The Drift's site looks cool! Bummer! :tiki:

[ Edited by: DawnTiki on 2003-01-20 13:04 ]

This place is too cool. How weird we wouldn't have known about it before now.

Typical Scottsdale club. Bartenders didn't know what a Navy Grog was.  Drank mediocre Mai-Tai's when I could get them, service was awful; unless you had plastic tits.

HA HA, that's too funny, what a great review....it actually makes me wonder, kind of sounds like that other (name?) Scottsdale bar that was the sister operation of that Thai titty bar...

H

Giligin's Kon Tiki!

http://www.giligins.com

Thanks to the caring souls here at TC, I knew to stay away from the place.

Hmmmm..."and no party would be complete without our extensive ?umbrella? drinks, wine and beer list"...that websight has a slight eau de Roxbury Boys scent that has me quite concerned. I think I'm gonna have to avoid that one. Maybe just head up to Vegas for the evening.

Here are a few more reviews that have rolled in from my Arizona gang:

"The Drift aka The Shit-Hole! Staff Sucks, Drinks Suck, the decore 1/2 ASS= I give it 2 thumbs up my Butt!" (This one sounds negative to me)

"It reminded me of a flatulent monkey at the Bronx Zoo I once knew." (I'm not sure, but considering the source, this actually may be a positive review)

And a voice of reason:
"The only comment I would add is that this was prime-time on a Saturday night. Who knows what this place is like if you are sitting at a table with waitress service on a Wednesday night."

I'll keep you all posted if more folks send in their thoughts.
-Weird Unc

Kinda sounds like Taboo Cove. Probably pretty cool in the afternoon when the hype to draw dance party people isn't there. Nothing kills a tiki bar like music from Nelly and...... who ever else is big right now. Unfortunate that most of our style bars are better for us during the day.

are there any updated reports of this place. i would like to go there for dinner. but it doesn't look promising. need to know the info....throw me a frickin bone here

There haven't been any more reports from my crew in Arizona (I don't think any of them will ever go back there!). I'll be in Scottsdale at the end of February and, despite my friends' objections, will venture into the forbidden (by my friends) realm of The Drift. I'll go early so as not to get caught up in the awful Scottsdale nightlife and maybe the experience won't be as bad. Let's keep our fingers crossed.

-Weird Unc

OS

I think the cocktail hour might be splended there. Good luck in you ventures and i will give a full report of mine.

thank you don't drive through

B

What gives? There are all these new (allegedly tiki) bars opening which should be a good thing. Only problem is, nobody seems to get it right. It's like they start with good intentions but then someone from some evil corporate restaurant consulting firm takes over and convinces them that in order to make money they need to serve crappy drinks and play rap or disco or heavy metal. I mean, should it be that difficult to put together a decent tiki bar or restaurant? I guess I would hold off on judging a place until I have seen it myself- the website looks pretty cool and folks were critical of "The Tikis bar and Grill" which turns out to actually be an OK place. However we were just in New York last month and made a point of visiting Waikiki Wally's and were very disappointed. I wrote up a little review and was going to post it with a few pictures we took after we checked out the "Rock a Tiki" in Chicago- I thought it made sense to review the two new places together. But maybe I should just put that up now?

[ Edited by: boutiki on 2003-02-07 23:56 ]

OS

yes please do.

i am stoked because we will be taking grandma there for dinner. she said that the website looked cool and the place reminds here of when my grandpa and her used to go to the trader vics in chicago, like every week for lunch. a pupu platter and a few cocktails at lunch, makes the day go by much quicker. ahh to live in those times where rules were not as strict.

Has anyone braved the college crowds to visit the tikis at this Sushi Bar in Tempe, Arizona?

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=2157986762&category=2002

Sabu

Well, I finally made it to Drift. And you know, it wasn't as awful as I was made to believe it would be. Yes, the Scottsdale pretty crowd populates the place and the music is awful incessant uuumm...tssss, uuumm...tssss, uuumm...tssss, uuumm...tssss club stuff, but other than that, I found it quite pleasant indeed. The drink selection is wide and provocative. Many of the cocktails are served in Munktiki mugs, which gives them super points in my book and the drink menu itself is wood covered and cartoonishly illustrated giving fun and mysterious descriptions of each beverage. I had a Witchdoctor served in a Munktiki Zombie skull mug, a fine drink with some subtleties to it. They even serve huge drinks in giant clamshells garnished with real orchids, enjoyed with loooong straws, of course. There's a fireside patio with burlwood chairs outside and OA doorpulls, Bosko tikis, pufferfish lamps, and a tropical fishtank inside. The bathroom hall is done in faux lava, and there's a large Moai in the back of the main room. The service wasn't as bad as I expected either. Even the bar manager who had previously told my friend to "Fuck off!' when my buddy complained about the rude service, remembered him and greeted him warmly. My guess is that when they opened, they just weren't prepared and maybe now they've found their rhythm. Of course, there's room for improvement with lighting and decor, but if you're in the area it's worth checking out, just try to avoid weekend nights.

-Weird Uncle Tiki

The Drift Entrance

The patio's burlwood chairs

Tropical fish behind the bar

The Drift patio

Wall Tiki

This drink is called The Grotto

Entrance tiki

The main room

The Drift Moai

Another view of the main room

[ Edited by: weirduncletiki on 2003-03-12 12:18 ]

Here are some local articles about The Drift:
http://search.azcentral.com/search/?sub=&sp-q=tiki&sp-q-1=&sp-x-1=&sp-date-range=-1&sp-a=sp10021ba9&sp-f=ISO-8859-1&sp-g=&sp-s=0&sp-p=all

Too bad, Nicole Losey has to use the cliche's about tacky and gaudy to define tiki. She needs an education!

Too bad Howard Seftel article can not get the facts correct either. Captain Bligh in Tonga, Mr Seftel he never made it out of Tahiti with the entire crew.

T

I wrote up a little review and was going to post it with a few pictures we took after we checked out the "Rock a Tiki" in Chicago- I thought it made sense to review the two new places together.

Is it seriously named "Rock-a-tiki" ??

:tiki:

C

I've been to Drift several times now and have enjoyed everything about it until this Friday. (Of course you have to be careful not to knock over a fabulous Munktiki mug!) But when a bar gets popular in Scottsdale the well-groomed but spoiled, ill-mannered wannabees show up and the atmosphere gets sleazy. Go on a weekday.

Looks interesting, but a bit sparse on the interior decorating... needs some floats, fishnets, palm leaves... more, more, more....!

Excellent photos, WierdUncleTiki.

Does anyone have any opinions on the other Scottsdale tiki bars: The Tiki Hut, Gilligan's Kon Tiki or The Kona Grill?

Mahalo.

I go to Scottsdale once a year on my annual spiritual retreat for baseball Spring Training. I stay in "Snobsdale" (as the neighboring locals refer to it) because there is a ton of clubs and nightlife within walking distance.

If you don't like a crush of spoiled, pretty, pretentious people, arriving in Hummer limousines, and an atmosphere of a party at the frat house where the richest kids go, you should probably just steer clear of Scottsdale period. It's not exactly my demographic, but it does have a ton of lively nightlife choices and the highest ratio of attractive women of any city I've ever visited.

The Drift is a beautiful place, and you can pretty much entirely avoid the complaints previously registered by going before 10pm. I made a rare non-Spring visit last Halloween, and have to say that I couldn't find much to complain about sitting comfortably outside in late October, drinking from a Munktiki mug and a Buddha mug (with the straw going through the navel) and a quite tasty pu pu platter, as large bowls of flame flicker overhead.

Gilligans is more downscale and much more of your typical frat house atmosphere -- a ramshackle, seafarer decor that's a little to contrived and festooned with advertisements to be charming. There's really nothing tiki about it except the general nautical theme. But the food and drink prices are reasonable (a rarity in Scottsdale) and they keep the atmosphere fun with various games, contests, karaoke, trivia, etc.

I'll take my camera next spring.

Mostly in my 10 or so visits to Drift I always go early for 3-5 drinks and I am gone before the "Scottsdale Sett" arrives.
The selection is not bad, with about 23 rums on the menu and 21 Specialty Drinks.
Happy Hour is from 4-7 Monday through Friday, and I always make a pit stop if I am making sales calls in that part of Scottsdale and want to avoid rush hour home.

The fact that Drift is a trendy tiki, clean, and offers something means to me that it is better than nothing. The food is very average, and I only order the crab dip to soak up my round of Mai Tais. The bartender is a nice chap from Detroit, and remembers my likes and dislikes, and is a positive asset for Drift.

Last Saturday, I had a friend come into town so it gave me the rare opportunity to just go out for drinks. The place was a total zoo, and full of very Scottsdale "Sorastitutes"
(Sorority Girls meets Prostitutes)and Credit Card Millionaire Playboys (think Guido the Killer Pimp meets yuppie posers). I felt like I was in a casting call for the Mtv's Real World Tikiville. At 39 years of age, I am no spring chicken, but I am no old foggie either. The dudes definitely were a long neck drinking crowd, and the pixie and weakfish women were Red Bull Vodkanistas. It just lacked style to me, and the Tiki Island became a sort of Paradise Island Reality meat market show. My friend and I departed back to my home patio and tiki garden to smoke and drink. As cigar smoke wafted above my palm, the serene tiki torches flickered their warm glow. Softly, the sounds of Yma Sumac set the mood and moon for relaxation. My Fogcutter's and Cuba Libre's (using real Mexican Coca-Cola..no corn syrup..real sugar!)were better than our drinks at Drift. My Fiance, Kim's leftovers in the fridge, were better than the food at Drift. My patio at midnight was a much better Tiki bar in Tempe than the theme bar atmosphere at Drift on a week-end night.

I will still go to Drift at Happy Hour, but on week-ends it feels like a disco to me.

MH

Oxolotl folksies!

Anybody know who da peoples iz dat gonna open/manage da new Trader Vics in Scottsdale or Vegas? If you have email/phone please contact Ho-san on da coconut wireless. ok

mahalo now, and OKONKULUKU!

Ho

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