Entries in the 'San Francisco' Category

June 5, 2006

Papua New Guinea Tikis at Stanford University

Filed under: Art,My Travels,San Francisco,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 3:57 pm
Tiki "Thinker" at Stanford University
Tiki "Thinker" at Stanford University

While making plans to visit the Rodin sculpture garden at Stanford University a couple weeks back, I made a startling discovery… the Cantor Arts Center, which manages the Rodin sculptures, also has a second, separate sculpture garden on the other side of campus — and this one is all art from Papua New Guinea.

In 1994, several artists from Papua New Guinea were brought to Stanford to create carvings on-site. The sculptures are all clustered in a wooded area at the corner of Santa Teresa and Lomita. At the center are a cluster of poles carved from trees that are 20-30 feet tall, surrounded by still-untouched trees. There are two large slit drums on the ground, ready to be thumped. To one side, there are some painted poles, and some great tikis. To the south is a large, striking carving with bird wings outstretched, and to the north are a variety of lovely stone carvings.

The Cantor Arts Center museum also has a small collection of Oceanic art, but the real treasure is this somewhat-hidden sculpture garden. Just a short ways down the road from Stanford, right on El Camino Real, is the Palo Alto Trader Vic’s; while this Trader Vic’s pales in comparison to other TVs, it does house an impressive private collection of Papua New Guinea tikis and art, making a visit to both spots in one trip work well.

I’ve been a couple times now, and naturally, I’ve taken a bunch of pictures. You can see them at Humuhumu’s Life in Photos, or in a thread at Tiki Central.

June 4, 2006

San Francisco: The 6th Annual Tiki Central Tiki Crawl

Filed under: Events,News,San Francisco,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 1:17 pm

The dates have been announced for the sixth annual Tiki Central Tiki Crawl in San Francisco — it’s happening the weekend of July 21-23, 2006. This is the only official Tiki Central event, designed for TCers to meet each other in the city with the highest-density high-quality Polynesian Pop in the world. The first one happened in early 2001, making it the longest-lived of all the annual tiki gatherings. It’s a little different each year, and with the opening of two outstanding new tiki bars in the East Bay in the past year, there’s a fresh abundance of tiki to be seen. Details about the crawl have not yet been announced, but save the date — whether you’re a local or you’ll be coming in from out of town, it’s a great way to see all the tiki that the Bay Area has to offer!

May 3, 2006

Alameda: Poor Man’s Tiki Oasis at Forbidden Island

Filed under: Events,San Francisco,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 12:59 pm

Sadly, we aren’t able to make it to Tiki Oasis this year — work is getting in the way. This is the first Oasis I’ve missed in the past four years, and it feels strange to not be joining the tiki hordes in the festivities. There are a whole bunch of Bay Area folks in the same boat this year, and we’re going to have our own Poor Man’s Tiki Oasis at Forbidden Island in Alameda, both Friday and Saturday nights. If you can’t make it to Oasis this year, too, come on out and join us. You’ll quickly forget you’re missing anything when you realize you’re sitting in the best tiki bar this side of the Mississippi.

April 24, 2006

Forbidden Island is Now Open

Filed under: News,San Francisco,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 1:37 pm
Inside Forbidden Island
Inside Forbidden Island

This weekend was the grand opening of Forbidden Island, and it appears to be a massive success. There was a line out the door Saturday from before 6 p.m. to the end of the night; the line stretched to the end of the block, with people willing to wait as long as an hour to get in. Once inside, there was a lot of enthusiastic raving about the drinks and the decor to be heard. I’ve now had a chance to sample at least half of the menu, which has 38(!) drinks. My favorite right now is the Krakatoa, which is from Jeff “Beachbum” Berry’s Grog Log, and is a take on the Mai-Kai’s Black Magic. I also really love the Hawaii Kai Treasure, from the Hawaii Kai in New York. Everyone’s having a lot of fun working their way through the menu. There is also an extensive menu of fine rums available. It’s truly thrilling to see Forbidden Island off to such a great start, and getting such a positive response — and not just from tikiphiles, the crowd this weekend was a broad cross-section of people. Just goes to show that anyone can appreciate quality.

Now that Forbidden Island is open, the local tiki crowd is planning on gathering there every Wednesday, in the years-long tradition of the Wednesday meetups at Tiki-Ti in Los Angeles. Everybody is welcome, feel free to go up to the group wearing the aloha shirts and introduce yourself. Forbidden Island co-owner Martin says:

Come one, come all, to Wednesdays at FI!

Help make this inaugural Wednesday one to remember- there’s a surprise in store, so be there by 7pm and wear your finest aloha- you’ll want to look your best!

Don’t forget your VIP cards, or pick one up if you don’t have one yet

Mahalo, and see everyone on Wednesday!

I’ve updated Critiki with a ton more information about Forbidden Island, and many photos of the beautiful interiors.

April 14, 2006

Alameda: Forbidden Island Grand Opening

Filed under: Events,News,San Francisco,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 4:16 pm
Forbidden Island Flyer
Forbidden Island Flyer

The much-anticipated opening of Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge in Alameda is just around the corner — doors open to the public on Saturday, April 22. That’s next weekend! The opening event is going to be, as I described to my mother, “batshit insane, but in a good way.” The best thing about this event is that it’s not really a one-day deal… Forbidden Island will still be there in the days, weeks, months and hopefully years to come.

I’ve gotten a sneak peek at the menu, and it alone is exciting. There are a few new creations I’m dying to try, and there are a lot of old traditional cocktails that are delicious yet hard to come by in today’s bars. And knowing Martin, you can bet that he will make absolutely sure each and every drink on the menu is served right — I’ve listened (kind of) to him jabber on for seemingly hours about which Falernum is the best. “Passion” does not describe Martin’s feelings on the subject of tropical drink making — “obsession” comes a lot closer. The drinks are all going to be made with only fresh-squeezed juices, premium spirits and natural ingredients. Even their maraschino cherries are made with natural colors and flavors, and no preservatives.

But even if all they served was beer (perish the thought), it still would be the coolest tiki bar in the area, thanks to the thorough decking-out the space has received from Bamboo Ben and Martin. Martin has been shooing away any looky-loos over the past couple weeks, but when even in its half-done state it was breathtaking.

It all starts next Saturday, April 22 — if you can’t make it on opening day, be sure to visit it soon! And if you know someone who has serving experience and some cool aloha shirts, let ‘em know that paradise is hiring.

April 7, 2006

Forbidden Island is Hiring

Filed under: News,San Francisco,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 1:00 pm

I’ve been able to visit Forbidden Island in Alameda a couple times in the past few weeks, and it’s going to be amazing. It’s certainly dominated the conversations among the Bay Area tikiphiles of late. They have already hired two world-class former Trader Vic’s bartenders (not counting co-owner Martin Cate, who himself is a former Trader Vic’s bartender), making Forbidden Island one of the world’s few tiki bars where the drinks are top-notch. Now, they are looking to get some great serving staff to match:

Aloha! Forbidden Island is only a few short weeks away from opening in Alameda and we’re looking for experienced servers to work in our fun, tropical atmosphere. We’re looking for enthusiastic, outgoing, and friendly people to work with our great bartending crew. Knowledge of tropical drinks is not necessary, but an eagerness to learn more about them and to memorize our extensive drink menu is a must. POS experience is preferred. Full and part-time positions are available. Servers must provide their own tropical attire. If interested, please email your resume and details to: info@forbiddenislandalameda.com. Or, if you know someone who might be interested, please pass this information along! Mahalo!

Everything is on track for an April 22 Grand Opening, I’ll be posting more details about that event soon.

March 31, 2006

San Francisco: Trader Vic’s Tiki Party Book Signing

Filed under: Events,San Francisco,Shopping,Tiki,Trader Vic's — Humuhumu @ 10:25 pm

Trader Vic’s is having another book signing party for Trader Vic’s Tiki Party, by Steve Siegelman. The book has over 100 tropical drink recipes, including some of the old Trader Vic’s favorites, and some food recipes, too. The book signing is at Trader Vic’s San Francisco, at 555 Golden Gate Ave (just west of Van Ness). Party attendees will get one free Mai Tai, and can enjoy complimentary pupus. Attendance is limited to only 100 people, and you must RSVP in advance by calling (415) 775-6300.

March 29, 2006

Game Developers Conference & Smoke Tiki, San Jose

Filed under: My Travels,San Francisco,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 4:46 pm
The bar at Smoke Tiki in San Jose
The bar at Smoke Tiki in San Jose

Last week, I spent a bit of time in San Jose, thanks to the 2006 Game Developers Conference. I’m not a game developer myself — I just like to play them — but my boyfriend is a game designer (when he’s not busy doing UI design). His primary claim to fame is as the creator of Rocknor’s Donut Factory, but he also worked on one of the Monkey Island games, which of course makes him incredibly and irresistably sexy. Hanford went to the daytime stuff, and I met up with him in the evenings for the social events. It was a lot of fun seeing the reactions at GDC as people learned who Hanford was… there were a lot of “oh, wow!”s.

As it turns out, there was a bit of tiki crossover happening at GDC. It started for us when Ion Hardie, Director of Product Development at Reflexive, purchased a banner ad on Tiki Central. It turns out that he’s a tikiphile, and Reflexive has created a tiki-themed casual games portal at TikiArcade.com. Ion & Hanford chatted a bit online about their shared love of gaming and tiki, and we met up with Ion at the Minna Mingle event on Wednesday night. We had a great time chatting about gaming (I was even able to keep up with the discussion, mostly, which was nice). The whole Reflexive crew was great. We also spent some time chatting with some folks from Macromedia’s Director team — Hanford knows Director pretty much inside out.

While at the Minna Mingle, we were invited to another evening event the next day, taking place at Smoke Tiki. Smoke Tiki is a new tiki bar in San Jose. Frankly, we hadn’t been very interested in checking it out, as it sounded more grab-bag tropical than Polynesian Pop, which isn’t our thing. We knew we had to go see it eventually, though, so this was a perfect excuse. When we got there, we were pleasantly surprised to see that it was a bit more Polynesian than we’d anticipated, but it was definitely on the cartoony side. It’s called Smoke Tiki because it’s a smokehouse, and the smoked chicken skewers they were serving were quite delicious. The drink I had, however, was abysmal.


March 14, 2006

Forbidden Island Update

Filed under: San Francisco,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 10:06 pm

This weekend, we got to pitch in and help on the build-out of Forbidden Island, the new tiki bar in Alameda. It’s still on track to open in April. Regular Humu Kon Tiki readers are very familiar with the fantastic work of Bamboo Ben; he has been brought on board to do the interiors. Bamboo Ben’s mastery, combined with the fantastic vision of Martiki, is creating something unlike what you’ve seen before. The build-out has only just begun, but even with what’s already there it’s pretty dramatic. I’ve also had a chance to get to know the bartenders who’ll be crafting the fantastic concoctions (the drink menu is going to be huge), and we’ll be in very, very good hands. I can’t conjure up a word that properly conveys how we feel about this place already — we’re definitely going to be barnacles there. There’s sure to be a Grand Opening party (or two, or three), I’ll be sure to keep you posted. Better yet — go to their website, and sign up for the mailing list.

Mondays at San Francisco Trader Vic’s — Still Going Strong

Filed under: Events,San Francisco,Tiki,Trader Vic's — Humuhumu @ 9:37 pm
Tikis in the bar at San Francisco Trader Vic's
Tikis in the bar at
San Francisco Trader Vic’s

Just about every week, someone says to me, “Are you still going to Trader Vic’s on Mondays? Because I’m going to be in town on a business trip…” Yep, we sure are. As a matter of fact, since we started going in mid-October, we’ve only missed one week. It’s a rotating cast of characters — a few of us make it every week, some make it every other week or once a month, and there are always new faces coming through. Often it’s folks in from out of town, sometimes people we’re meeting for the first time, and lots of old friends, too. Great drinks, great food, great company, great conversation… what’s not to like?

The San Francisco Trader Vic’s is on Golden Gate Ave, just east of Van Ness. Parking is easy to come by on the street. There’s typically someone there by 7 p.m. or so, and we get there by about 7:30 and often stay until close. Come on by, and I’ll lift a drink with you.

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About Humuhumu
Humuhumu is the creator of several tiki websites. She is a designer and programmer based out of San Francisco.

- Website Design and Programming

- A Worldwide Guide to Tiki Bars & Polynesian Restaurants

- Tiki Mugs & More: Track & View Collections




Arkiva Tropika
Mimi Payne’s massive Polynesian Pop collection

Barefoot Bloggin’
A surfin’, ukein’, freewheelin’ monkey boy

Beachbum Berry
Author of Grog Log and Intoxica!, and one of my dearest drinkin’ buddies

Blog from the user interface designer extraordinaire

Worldwide Guide to Tiki Bars & Polynesian Restaurants

Dumb Angel
A look at the 1960s Los Angeles mod, pop, surf, and music scene

Eye of the Goof
Pop culture with a tiki tinge

Forbidden Island
My Wednesday hangout, the Bay Area’s best tiki bar

Humuhumu’s Life in Photos
Pictures of my adventures

I build websites

Junkyard Clubhouse
Random interesting things from Humuhumu & Hanford Lemoore

Kevin Kidney
Kevin loves tiki, I love Kevin, you will too

Tiki links galore

Mai Tai Online
Montreal-based tiki ‘zine

Tiki Mug Collection Organizer

The Jab
Follow the way of the jab

Tiki Bar TV
Public Access meets Modern Drunkard

Tiki Central
Community forums

Tiki Magazine
Periodical publication covering the wide world of Tiki

Tiki Talk
Hot Lava’s Tiki Blog