Tropical decor. Luau-themed nights. Mai Thais and Bahama Mamas. The tiki bar is a longstanding American tradition that first surfaced in the 1930s, thanks to Texas native Ernest Raymond Beaumont Gantt. By the 1960s, the glamorous tiki traditions of classic Hollywood had extended to all corners of the U.S., providing a portal — an escape — to exotic locales in the form of cleverly designed restaurants, bars and libations.
This week you can relive the allure of this American cocktail movement at special events across Texas. The second annual Texas Tiki Week features plenty of festive events to quench your tropical thirst without having to leave the city limits.
We've rounded up the best tiki events in Austin this week, brought to you by the United States Bartenders' Guild.
June 26: Bou-Tiki Night at Bar Congress and Midnight Cowboy
Jason Stevens shares his most inventive and elegant interpretations of tiki cocktails at Bar Congress from 6 p.m. - 11 p.m. (open to the public). The fun starts at Midnight Cowboy at 10 p.m. with a tiki-speakeasy experience like no other (reservations required and are available online).
June 27: Rhum Extravaganza at Twin Liquors
Producers from all over the rum world will present a rum and rum cocktail tasting bazaar at the Hancock Center location. Featured spirits include Rhum Clement, Rhum JM Agricole, Treaty Oak, Mt. Gay and more. Texas Tiki Week commemorative mugs will also be on sale during this event, which is open to the public.
June 28: Bat-Ass Tiki Happy Hour at the Four Seasons
Soak up the sunset and enjoy the iconic flight of the bats under the Congress Avenue bridge with a tiki cocktail in hand. The first 100 guests at the Four Seasons bar will receive a commemorative Texas Tiki Week mug with the purchase of any tiki cocktail.
June 28: Tiki Cocktails and Live Music at Mohawk
How about a little tiki to go with your Red River live music experience? The Mohawk will feature El Dorado rum in simple, refreshing tiki libations from 10 p.m. - 2 a.m.
June 29: Four Roses Bourbon Tiki Brunch at drink.well.
Tiki milk punch and other whiskey-based tiki classics will be passed across the bar, accompanying a special menu of island-inspired brunch dishes from drink.well.’s chef Jeremy Bruch. The event runs from 12 p.m. - 4 p.m. (no reservations, open to the public).
June 29: Treaty Oak Tiki Block Party
Close out Texas Tiki Week with a true Austin experience: an East Side block party. Hosted by Treaty Oak Rum, the pool party runs from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. RSVP is required to firstname.lastname@example.org.
A full list of Texas Tiki Week events is available on the USBG website.