Columbus isn’t exactly exploding with tiki bars. But we all know it’s about quality, not quantity, and that’s where this short list of destinations excels. There’s not too much you need to do to prepare yourself for this tiki tour, but I do have a few suggestions.
When you go, don’t hesitate to order something fruity and delicious. Arguably, the best thing about tiki bars are their drink menus, so you’d really be doing yourself a disservice if you didn’t have at least one beverage involving a tiny umbrella.
The tiki bar crazy officially started in Los Angeles in 1934 at a bar called Don the Beachcomber. The tiki bar was the brainchild of Ernest Raymond Beaumont Gantt (whew, what a name!) who was a New Orleans native who loved to travel. He changed his name to Don Beach when he set up shop in LA and created a bar inspired by the tropical flavors he found while traveling the Caribbean and South Pacific.
It took a while for the full tiki bar obsession to take hold. During World War II, young Americans were deployed throughout the South Pacific and it was there that the got they fell in love with all things tropical.
Here in Columbus, the most iconic of the tiki establishments remains The Kahiki, even though it closed years ago. But not to worry tiki fans. There are still a few marvelous places to have a drink and enjoy the bright colors and fun of a tiki bar!
If you’re seeking out a mysterious sort of night, the speakeasy under Mikey’s Late Night Slice in the Short North is the perfect fit. Sacred Palm feels exclusive. They’ve got a great drink menu and the secret entrance is super clever. Plus, you’re just a few steps away from a midnight snack!
Address: 457 N High St, Columbus, OH 43215
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As we say today & everyday at GS: Cheers, queers! Rainbow salad with red peps, carrots, pineapple, avocado, blue cheese, craisins & red wine vinaigrette. $2 from each special goes to our friends at Kalaidoscope. #happypride #tikipride #cheersqueers #kaleidoscopeyouthcenter
Grass Skirt Tiki Room takes the legacy of Kahiki very seriously. They pay homage to the iconic restaurant, all while putting their own unique spin on tiki in Columbus. In fact, their ties to Kahiki are more than just sentimental. George the Monkey, a fountain that came from Kahiki, is the star of the patio at Grass Skirt!
Address: 105 N Grant Ave, Columbus, OH 43215
Huli Huli Tiki Lounge is the newest on the tiki scene, but they’ve quickly made a name for themselves. In addition to a great tiki-inspired cocktail menu, they also have a wicked small plates menu, full of tropical flavors! If you want a great deal on a delicious drink, don’t miss Tiki Tuesdays. That $5 Mai Tai will make you feel like you’re a million miles away.
Address: 26 W Olentangy St, Powell, OH 43065
You may not be able to hit up a tiki bar right this second, but that doesn’t mean you can’t start planning!
Featured image via Facebook
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