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Tiki Central / Locating Tiki

Thatch, Portland, OR (bar)

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Street:2733 NE Broadway St.

New tiki bar in Portland's northeast quadrant, opened in 2007 by Robert Volz (roberttiki). Features items from the recently-defunct Jasmine Tree that originally were in the Portland Kon-Tiki.


I was sure there'd be a Locating Tiki thread for Thatch, but I couldn't find one -- mea culpa if I missed it!

It's really quite silly it's taken this long, but I finally made it to Thatch in Portland. Of course, the Portland tiki crowd can make any ol' hole a blast, but Thatch is hardly any ol' hole... I love this place! First off, it's dark, and I'm a sucker for a nice, dark tiki bar. It's not as dark as The Alibi, of course, but I think there are sensory deprivation chambers that are brighter than The Alibi. I digress...

:up: Thatch!

:up: Thatch! Again! Only in portrait this time!

What light there is at Thatch is provided by a lineup (literally -- I'd actually love to see the lamps scattered a bit more) of really beautiful lamps by Kahaka, and lovely, lovely pufferfish. Appropriate for the home town of the [url=http://www.velveteria.com/]Velveteria[url], the place is lined with velvet paintings of varying quality. There's a reclining wahine behind the bar who looks lumpy in good ways (boobies!) and in bad ways (I couldn't shake the notion that her cheeks looked disturbingly like some paintings of Santa Claus). But much of the velvet there is really quite good, even great.

:up: Tiki Mama suspects she knows where this painting is going to wind up, and she's not really looking forward to that day.

Also: there's a clown. At least the clown is obvious in its wrongness, and Portland is a place that prides itself on obvious wrongness, so it sort of works in that regard, but really it'd be happier in a new home.

:up: Sturdy-as-hell (thank goodness!) clam shell from the Kon-Tiki -- it holds paper towels in the bathroom now.

There are pieces from the Portland Kon-Tiki all over the place -- the famous three cannibal tikis and the large mask that hung on the outside, of course, but also scads of other, smaller pieces that are probably better showcased here than they ever were at the Jasmine Tree.

The sunken bar is way cool. I chatted to one of the bartenders about what it's like to work at a sunken bar, and he actually really likes how it gives a sort of intimate feel when he's chatting with customers seated at the bar. The seating throughout much of Thatch came from an old Armet & Davis Denny's, and it fits quite nicely. I didn't get to spend time in the raised hut at the back of Thatch, as it was taken over by a large group by the time we arrived, but it looks like someplace I could lose many a happy evening.

The water at the walkway is great -- the bridge amazingly has no railings, but there haven't been any drunken spills into the pool yet. Robert says that the absense of a rail forces even drunk people to pay a bit more attention to what they're doing. So far, so good!

:up: Yummy scotchy goodness, my London Sour

I had a London Sour, which was quite tasty. Overall, the selection of drinks looked pretty good (though I wouldn't miss the "Donkey Punch" if it left the menu -- ugh). We didn't try the food, since we'd just come from dinner (meatloaf & potatoes au gratin at the Doug Fir -- yum!).

The music! The music was all spot on -- lovely Exotica. Yay! I don't know exactly what the music mix was, as I was paying attention more to the conversation of my companions... but I take that as a good sign, that the music didn't jar me with its inappropriateness. Thank goodness.

Huge mahalos to Robert for showing us a grand time, and to Melintur, Tiki Mama, Kim, tikimonkey & the rest of my friends who are TC-nameless for sharing yet another memorable tiki-scented evening with me. I'm already looking forward to my return in late July!

:up: View of Thatch from behind a tiki's bum

:up: Please, one of you Portland regulars who knows all the sordid details -- fill us in on who this lovely couple is. The male half, specifically. We Googled & Googled with the little we were told and came up empty.

More completely blurry photos, in the Humuhumu style you've come to expect, at:

(p.s. -- booyah! I still have my BBCode mojo!)

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