Tiki bars are back. Back with a vengeance. And for good reason. Who doesn’t want a stiff, delicious drink while being transported back to the 60s?! Dream come true if you ask me. In fact I used it as a good excuse to buy a dress I fondly call my “Tiki” dress. Then I always have something quirky and fitting to wear to match the bar. Evan likes to wear his Penguin fishing lure shirt; it’s as crazy as he gets. He wouldn’t be caught dead in anything Hawaiian or Tiki! However you may find him in a Commodore hat from time to time.. But you can leave ALL the kitsch to me! (The fun too.)
Our list of the top 5 tiki bars in California
If you find the rest of this post as hilarious as I do it’s because Evan wrote it. Enjoy!
1. Tiki Ti (Los Angeles)
- Classic Spot, Tiny lil bar with big drinks. It’s family owned and operated joint on sunset exiting Los Feliz on the way to hipster Silver Lake
- Stiffest drinks in town, hands down. Try to have more than 3 I dare you!
- Cash only (ATM on site, working if you’re lucky)
- Order a Blood & Sand. Then watch the barman send out a wind up bull and hear the crowd chant out “TORO TORO TORO” while the doctor overflows the cocktail with a booze floater.
Check out Tiki site here.
2. Tonga Room (San Francisco)
- Best people watching spot in town
- The band is floating on a stage/raft. Seriously they are playing in the middle of indoor pool, eh…lagoon.
- Pupu plater magic . Made you say poo poo.
- There is a ship like dance floor. After a few drinks you’ll look like you are swabbing the deck. Aarrr!
Check out Tonga Room’s website here.
3. Trader Sams (Anaheim)
- My favorite Drink: Tiki Tiki Tiki Tiki Tiki Rum. And you have to order it this way or you don’t get served (in honor of the Tiki-Tiki-Tiki-Tiki-Tiki Room)
- Order a shipwreck…Oh my God we’re all going to die, look around you as the bar starts to come alive: thunder, rain and changing paintings!
- Have your buddy order a Shrunken Zombie Head while seated at the bar and watch him shrink down with some Disney engineering, eh…magic.
- Day drinking? Close the door you’re letting the fun out!
Check out Trader Sam’s website here.
4. Bootleggers Tiki (Palm Springs)
- These guys know their drinks and they know how to name them: Boaty McBoatface aka Lil Yatchy, Tres Puntos & Trinidadi Issues
- Small spot that gets popular late at night. It’s not the same vibe when you are on the patio (always sit inside and at the bar if able.)
- Dang good 3 dots and a dash and the Traditional Daiquiri is legit.
- Chad Austin is a wealth of knowledge of many things. If you find yourself at the bar while he is tending and you happen to be heading out to New Orleans in the near future, ask about where he likes to have an adult beverage, his list of bars is on point.
Check out Bootlegger Tiki website here.
5. False Idol (San Diego)
- Anything CH Projects touches is as gold as the skulls at Noble Experiment. Seriously, look’um up every spot is dope AF.
- Serious Tiki knowledge in every glass.
- This is somewhat of a speakeasy located in Craft and Commerce in DT Little Italy district.
- Purdy Tiki décor inside.
Bonus – Smugglers Cove (San Francisco)
- We’ve actually never been able to get in…
- There is good reason for it, as their accolades go on and on.
- I like any place that mimics the look of an old pirate ship as the décor.
Let us know if you have been or plan to go to any of these spots!
Us after we finally made an awesome night out at Tonga Room!