Friday, September 24, 2010

BAR / GROG : Bahooka!

ah, the almighty BAHOOKA! Since I was a kid growing up in the suburbs of Los Angeles, I remember seeing this legendary BEAST at the corner of Rosemead and Lower Azuza Rd in the city of Rosemead. See back when I was a kid, I never ever set foot in here.. Why? Oh because it ALWAYS looked closed! Plus my parents weren't much drinkers and the place just looked a big drafty bar. I had friends that went to Rosemead High School which is literally across the street that always tried to go in there and have people buy them drinks. I think they were ALWAYS unsuccessful..

Anyway, finally later in life I arrive at the famous Bahooka and sit down.. you can see, we DOVE right into a Bowl, and get pretty buzzed off ONE. The thing with Bahooka is I've only been there a handful of times, but it seems that the effort involved in making their tropical drinks is pretty much, ALOT of booze, and some fruit juices. Nothing that tasted like it was from scratch but definitely some stuck out more than others. The food was mediocre at best and pretty much tasted like something you'd eat at some family restaurant. Ribs were pretty good, but nothing too amazing, still it's a good meal. It's mainly that you go to Bahooka for their drinks anyway!

Apparently the Bahooka dates back quite a bit. I want to estimate it was in the 70's that it was in the city of West Covina, and then closed to be relocated to the city of Rosemead. If you visit the Facebook page ( you'll see people's posts and stories of their experiences at the bar from early on to recent. It's interesting to see a bar such as the Bahooka has survived so many years in this small town, tucked away, and most never have even heard of it! Frankly, I think if you live in California and are a Tiki enthusiast, you MUST go down there and visit. It's got a million aquariums inside, tons of drinks, lots of food, and the only downside is, they're only open till 10pm.

Being inside this bar, is COMPLETELY surreal. It does NOT have any windows, (per Tiki bar rules) and inside it's ALWAYS dark. It feels like you're out at sea and the captain has collected way too many lamps, fish and other weird things from years past. It's also very large and houses probably in the vicinity of about 150 souls at once. The last time I went was for their 40th's anniversary mug party , having had Sven Kirsten design their mug and threw a big party to commemorate it! Lots of fun that night, and got completely obliterated when I ordered one of their 'secret' drinks. Ask for a Grenade, and if you're feeling bold, have them 'Pull the Pin'.


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