Thursday, May 26, 2011

Bars : Trader Sam's is now OPEN!


I have survived the amazingness that IS: Trader Sam's.

Honestly, I went in with very LOW hopes since I'm used to getting let down with 'new' Tiki Bars, but seriously these guys nailed it.

This is the exterior of the stunning (but small) A-Frame that stands outside the famed Disneyland Hotel. Just a stones throw from your hotel can you crawl up this bar and stagger back. Not to mention they serve food from the Tongaroa Terrace next door which was the only let-down. I was expecting a full restaurant but it's nothing more than a cafeteria style food. However, if you're inside of Trader Sam's you can order some of the smaller dishes inside and enjoy them with a cocktail. So that sorta makes up for it!

This is what Tongaroa Terrace looks like from the outside, very intriguing but roughly small inside.

Ok, let's get to Trader Sam's!...

So outside the front door sits so much awesome memorabilia such as this great sign, and some other pieces of decor that came from Disney's Polynesian Resort according to Jason Klepper whom was the FIRST patron inside the bar.

This guy was pretty awesome, ex-skipper and knew just about EVERYTHING about the Jungle Cruise and Disney's Tiki fascination. It was a great pleasure to meet this guy and chat with him during our visit.

 So we walk in and THIS is the first thing we see, our amazing Skippers inside the bar! All of these guys were amazing and had the same attitude and humor as the Skippers do on the Jungle Cruise, well at least the GOOD ones. I've had a few boring Skippers in my day and these guys are the best. how were the drinks?? Well I'll tell ya.. Hell I'll even SHOW ya!

Inside this little menu book had the list of snacks and beverages and shot all the parts I liked the most to display for you..

First I'll show you the cocktails I enjoyed..

Here we have the pouring of the 'Hippopoto-Mai Tai' ! This was a very well executed drink since they followed very closely to the Don Beach recipe and a smidge of the Trader Vic's style but completely creating their own. Also another key point was they were using Trader Tiki's Syrups as their main mixers! That alone was a good choice for them as Trader's makes excellent Orgeat, and other classic flavors like Don's Mix and Falernum.

Here is their version of the Painkiller dubbed the 'Tiki Tiki Tiki Tiki Tiki Rum', which was delicious! a little heavy on the ice but hey it was still good considering it had Pussers, Coco Lopez and the proper mix ratio to give that nice spiced taste with the nutmeg and cinnamon on top. Extremely recommended.

So next up, ..wait actually. I need to show you the snacks..

This was the Kalua Pork flatbread pizza thing, I love making these at home and now they have em at the bar! Very convenient! They were delicious by the way, crispy flatbread, slow roasted pork, and the sauce was delish! It was about 8.99 for this but that's typical for Disney faire.

So here was my 2nd cocktail, the Shrunken Zombie Head! Now this was a zombie that packed a serious punch. With 151 in that mix, it had to be my last drink before venturing into the park for the afternoon. It was really good, and it went down WAY too easy. So this drink could be very deadly for those seeking adventure such as myself..

The final drunk consumed was the Krakatoa Punch and indeed it was the last straw. This guy was very similar to a traditional Tiki Punch and was on the sweeter side but absolutely delicious with the hibiscus grenadine in full force! It also comes with an awesome show as do a few of the drinks on the menu; The Uh O'A!, the Shipwreck on the Rocks, and the Krakatoa Punch. For this drink, you'd see something like this...

As you can see this bar is stocked with surprises, amazing scenery and amazing staff that has love for the part of Disneyland us Tiki folk really really enjoy.

On a scale of DARK & TIKI i'd have to go with an 8 because there is in-fact some darkness in that bar, hence NO windows (true tiki bar), and a great ambiance that has been created there and hopefully will last for years and years.

Mahalo! till the next one! = full Flickr set of all the photos I shot that day!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Disneyana Tiki fans take note!
Yes my friends, this is in fact one of the composites for the upcoming Trader Sam's opening at the Disneyland Hotel in Anaheim!!!!!!!!!

I've been a Disney fan as much as any, but now.. I might not even enter the park. The proposed the new restaurant is now also the motif for the hotel as they are trying to redo the style. It's pretty exciting pending since I would've never thought the Disney camp would say, hmmm let's re-do the resort... hmm HOW ABOUT TIKI?!

According to one of my sources at the beloved Tiki Central Forums has posted that the Hotel is trying to keep this as classic as possible. So think classic Trader Vic's, The Luau, The Tikis, Don the Beachcomber, know, all the big name classics. At first I read a thread saying they were looking for a "Jimmy Buffet" style entertainer, but apparently that has been cleared up and they're not going to have entertainment as of YET. You can definitely bet that I'll be begging for a DJ gig in the upcoming future!

So going back to this amazing place. 
So here's an idea of what the place is gonna look like. HUGE a-frame building, lots of outdoor as well as indoor seating. Kind of reminds me of the Bali Ha'i in San Diego and hopefully the drinks & food will be just as good! I just read the new menu on their blog today:

...sounds amazing to say the least.

The more info I get, the sooner I'll post!