Not since Cheers unsuccessful battles with Gary’s Olde Towne Tavern has there been a barroom brawl the likes of the Tiki Tangle pitting the Trader Vic’s famous original Mai Tai recipe against the concoction created by the relative newcomer to the Tiki scene and former sports bar The Kings X out of Oakland, California. In a Coke vs. Pepsi type challenge both versions were prepared and sampled by an expert pair of Cocktologists, and judged by an esteemed panel of Mai Tai aficionados.

In 1936 Victor J. “Trader Vic” Begeron re-imaged his Oakland based family owned pub giving the establishment a Tiki-Exotica flavor, experimented with what was to become the first Pan fusion restaurant concept, and started dabbling in drink recipes from the Pacific Rim. His restaurant that was soon to be named Trader Vic’s, quickly became the toast of “O” Town, where it was often said that the best restaurant in San Francisco is in Oakland, and it is Trader Vic’s. In creating the Mai Tai, his signature cocktail meaning “the very best”, Vic held fast to the blueprint he used for all his cocktails, fresh ingredients with layered flavors where each ingredient was meant to enhance the drink as a whole and not overpower the entire proceedings. The drink that includes Light Rum, Orange Curacao, and Orgeat (an almond flavored syrup) is not as sweet as other versions, and can be a potent, tropical treat if prepared with the proper passion and with the proper proportional care in combining the ingredients.

The Kings X, an Oakland institution since the early 70’s, began life as a sports bar and was one of the first bars in America to feature and endorse fantasy football leagues, some teams staying intact for 20 years or more. A recent Polynesian makeover has reinvented the bar, and placed it right in the cross hairs in the battle for Oakland Mai Tai supremacy. Their delectable concoction is a somewhat sweeter version than the original and favors passion fruit juice instead of orgeat syrup.

And the Winner Is…………………………………………….

                             The Original Trader Vic’s Recipe………Try it……You’ll like it!!