There were three of us. Two ladies and a dude walking near the housing development that borders the re-energized Hayes Valley district. Not so dangerous, but definitely not very inviting as you pass row upon row of form fit houses designed for lower income folks along Gough Street.
“How close are we?” I heard as we sidled up the sidewalk toward our destination. That was my wife, as she was asking our roommate where it was. Our roommate had been there before, but admitted it was dark when she last went so she couldn’t be sure. Then I saw something odd.
Out front of a pretty non-descript grey building which looked more like a storefront of an office, was two lights. One red, one green. They looked vaguely familiar, in that they reminded me of nautical lighting.
“We’re here” I replied, stopping in front of the place. They both were forced into an immediate stop. The funny thing was opening the door, because when I opened it I saw a strangely delightful place before me.
A doorman, wearing a large fez with a longer tassel stopped us as if he were a sergeant-at-arms in a fraternal lodge. Initially, I was afraid we hadn’t arrived at our destination.
“IDs please.” he chimed at us, taking the lot in. Just so you all know, when someone asks my ID, I am instantly complemented, so I presented tout de suite. After checking the round, we were all allowed admission into this wonderful Shangri-La.
Let’s preface this by saying I do have a love affair most illicit with the tiki bar. From the energy and atmosphere of the grass shack designs, and the glass buoys that were lit in colors of greens, yellows and reds, I think I might have beamed a bigger smile than necessary, which the doorman noted with a smile of his own.
We moved to the upper lounge area. The bar being at the main floor level and another level below that, which I never looked at while there. Now this is a place that takes their rums seriously. They also offer their clients a list with 75 drinks, Once you have drunk all the drinks on that list, you will then be offered access to some more…special rums. All in all, we met foreign tourists who just might be reading this, some great people, and had an AWESOME scorpion bowl which we all shared, in addition to other drinks.
Let’s see, three down, another seventy-two more to go? I had better get back there fast!