big kahuna cantina: not really our tiki salvation...
ok i went to the big kahuna cantina on friday, and needless to say, it is not the rebirth of the hawaiian room.
i would not even go so far as to call it a tiki bar. not to say that it couldn't be fun. i would call it a 'pop-culturally aware, surfing-themed mexican restaurant with tiki undertones.'
whoever came up with the concept and executed the decor knew what they were working with, and made a place that your average nascar fan might get hooked by and then maybe enjoy the quirkiness of the mexican wrestling masks and the standard tiki mugs that the drinks can be served in. they might recall the brady bunch goes to hawaii episodes... maybe mixed with some indiana jones references and endless summer. safe enough.
the drink i got was called a 'frozen your tai.' safe enough, they were not calling it a mai tai by any means. it was more or less a daquiri with a float of myers dark rum. the main ingredients were rum, a dash of captain morgan's, apricot brandy, pineapple, orange, and cherry juice. i would class it as a decent drink, easily within the realm of grog log ingredients except for the frozen part and the captain morgan's.
the coconut shrimp was tasty enough, with a really good sweet chile sauce. not unlike what you might get at roy's, not so much the mai kai...? dunno.
overall it was an interesting place, but obviously they are in the business to make the tourist dollar, not cater to an obscure minority of cocktail culture enthusuasts (such as myself). who knows, it might be a gateway to more hardcore exotica for a person or two. i don't hate on the place; you can draw your own conclusions.
but you know what? i do not despair, because i have a whif of a possible old-school style tiki establishment which might come to the area within the next couple years. i'll keep you all posted. til then, surf the harbor!