85th Street & Amsterdam New York NY
On Manhattan’s Upper West Side is a little slice of the Tropics with a twist of Tiki. This place is popular, which means it will be busy, even on a Sunday afternoon around 2pm when we were there. No worries, it is a very friendly crowd. We were greeted by a hostess with leis and a smile. The place is not big, but it is fun with reggae and island music playing.
Some tiki aficionados have dismissed this place, but for me, the more the merrier. I rather have a list of tiki places I decline to visit in favor of others, rather than have none at all. What the tiki cult community has to realize is that we should be grateful tiki has had its reemergence, and once again, we can get a legit Mai Tai in a place with a tropical vibe. What does not evolve, dies. We don’t want tiki to die again, so we must embrace the updates and changes.
If you cannot decide from the vast menu of classic and updated modern cocktails, no worries, they have more than a half dozen frozen tropical cocktails on tap for you to try while you examine the menu for your next cocktail. This will help ease you into the cocktail menu if you are not all that familiar with classic Polynesian Cocktails and Tropical Tiki Drinks.
The Mai Tai is a legitimate take on the one of the most popular cocktails of all time, even outside the tiki realm. I went for something different like the Chicks on Holiday.
My wife wanted something more fun like the Shark Snacks. Anything is more fun in a ceramic mug, especially if its a shark mug filled with El Dorado rum, Espolan Tequila, apricot, coconut, grapefruit and lime.
They serve some killer fried chicken here, as well as some pickle specialties.