A not-quite-tropical paradise is just upstairs over the popular Tinwell Bar on Main Street, perfect for your next beach party—there’s no ocean so there’s no beach but that just means no sticky sand but there may be a blue plastic shark balanced on the edge of your drink and that’s as close as you want to get to a shark anyway.

This is how they did tiki drinks before they knew kitsch could border on cultural appropriation. Ever wonder what tiki actually means? It’s a Maori word and it refers to those big wooden carved statues that used to stand guard in front of Trader Vic’s. The figures represent Tiki, the first man created by Tane—many Polynesian cultures use Tiki to honor deified ancestors. In 1930s the California idea of tropical was seized by a rum-runner from Texas and New Orleans, Ernest Raymond Beaumont-Gantt, who started Don the Beachcomber. Tintiki follows in the sandy footprints of D the BC. As you should too, when you drink here—and by the way, your drink is rum, rum and more rum, in drinks concocted by Stuart Ford, resident Rum Wizard and Tiki boss. Example: the Wray M.F., (pictured, a nod to the club’s signature drink the AMF), made with Dented Brick Gin, brandy, Wray & Nephew rum, blanco tequila, fresh ginger, pineapple and Giffard Blue Curacao. (As bar co-owner Amy Eldredge points out, that’s the good kind—lots of tiki drinks depend on blue curacao and the bad kind tastes like lighter fluid.)

Eldredge and Ford will be teaching a Rum & Tiki series in mid-July where guests can learn about a variety of Tiki topics while enjoying their beverage offerings.

Every Tuesday is Tiki Tuesday from 6 p.m. to 1 a.m., and once a month or so local DJ’s play a vinyl set featuring vintage tropical-type music (think Harry Belafonte and banana tallies) Tintiki is also open every Friday and Saturday night from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. 

837 Main St., SLC, 801-953-1769. tinwellbar.com

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