2022 TOP STORIES
Top 10 Tiki stories of 2022 include legends lost, hope for the future
Join us in paying tribute to the influential figures we lost and reflect on their great impact. Let's also give thanks for the positive news that made it into our annual list of the most impactful stories of the year.
>>> The Atomic Grog's picks for the year's top news stories
Bonus cocktail recipes: Harry Yee's Tropical Itch | Stephen Remsberg's Planter's Punch
The Year in Tiki 2022: Take a trip back to the year's top events
Relive the year's top happenings with photos and video, social media posts, plus promotional artwork and links to official sites.
>>> CHECK OUT THE FULL 2022 EVENT ARCHIVE
The Mai-Kai turns 66 as work progresses on multiple renovation projects
There are many reasons to be hopeful that the 67th anniversary in 2023 will be the first since 2019 when we'll once again be able to gather inside the historic South Florida restaurant to appreciate its grandeur and beauty.
EXCLUSIVE: The Mai-Kai Restoration Guide
Miami festival fills weekend with rum seminars, tastings
Event includes two full days featuring some of the world's best spirits, premiere industry experts, and a friendly gang of easy-going rum enthusiasts.
UPDATES: Social media highlights
The Mai-Kai's deadly Zombie is resurrected for Halloween, along with its mysterious legend
The iconic cocktail is available for the first time since the historic restaurant closed after an October 2020 storm, and for the first time in takeout quarts and gallons.
HISTORY: 5 greatest moments in Zombie lore
>>> The Mai-Kai Cocktail Guide: Ratings, reviews, history of all the drinks
The Hukilau 2022: Daily recap, photos and video
The 19th Tiki weekender featured four days of live music, educational seminars, cocktails and rum tastings, plus lots more.
>>> FULL DAILY COVERAGE
The Mai-Kai's new owner reveals renovation plans during The Hukilau
Tiki enthusiasts get preview of refurbishment of the 65-year-old landmark during discussion at annual event in June.
>>> FULL COVERAGE OF THE PRESENTATION
The Mai-Kai's renovation plans include reimagined entryway, new event space
When The Mai-Kai completes a multimillion-dollar renovation, guests of the historic restaurant will be treated to several major enhancements, including a more immersive arrival experience and a new banquet hall.
SEE THE FULL STORY, PLUS PLANS AND RENDERINGS
Roof project: Crucial work underway to shore up historic structure
Entrance experience: Flow of parking lot to be reimagined
New event space: Banquet hall planned next to reconstructed kitchen
Behind the scenes: The Mai-Kai interior intact with exciting additions in the works
What's next? New owner promises continued effort to restore and upgrade
Miami Rum Congress 2022 kicks off full schedule of worldwide rum events
Industry VIPs and rum enthusiasts gathered for seminars, tastings and special events at the Hilton Cabana Miami Beach.
Social media recap: Photos, coverage of Miami Rum Congress 2022
Support Tiki bars: Visit their online stores, buy merchandise
Check out our guide for links to dozens of establishments with online stores.
>>> ORDER YOUR MERCH NOW
2021 TOP STORIES
The Mai-Kai sale, Oceanic Arts closing among top Tiki stories of 2021
It was a landmark year thanks to all the talented people in the Tiki community.
>>> See The Atomic Grog's picks for the highlights of 2021
Bonus cocktail recipe: The Tiki Lover
The Year in Tiki 2021: Take a look back at the year's top live and virtual events
Recap the year's top happenings, including official artwork and links plus photos and video.
>>> Full list of past events
Photos, recap: Miami festival reunites rum family for tasting event
Quick takes and highlights from the 2021 Rum Renaissance event, including photos and our favorite sips.
>>> RECAP AND PHOTO GALLERY
RECIPES: French, Haitian Zombies reflect true roots of deadly cocktail's namesake legend
Savor the complex flavors and stories behind the original deadly cocktail as we present two new Zombie recipes that feature the flavors and spirits of France and Haiti.
FULL STORY: History, mythology and cultural significance of the zombie
New original cocktails: LE ZOMBI | VODOU ZONBI (Haitian Zombie)
Hulaween on hiatus: Relive 12 years of madness at The Mai-Kai
With the Tiki temple closed for refurbishment, the annual Halloween bash isn't happening this year. But that won't stop us from taking a look back at 12 years of madness at the signature event.
>>> SEE PHOTOS FROM ALL THE PAST EVENTS
The Mai-Kai fans rejoice as new partnership paves way for reopening
Full coverage of the historic restaurant's joint ownership deal, announced in September 2021.
>>> CHECK OUT OUR IN-DEPTH REPORT
Exclusive photos: The Mai-Kai through the eyes of The Hukilau villagers
See images from the annual Tiki weekender shared by loyal fans.
>>> BROWSE THE PHOTOS NOW
The Hukilau 2021: Daily recap, photos and video
The Hukilau returned to the picturesque Fort Lauderdale area oceanfront for an 18th time Sept. 16-19 for four days of Polynesian Pop paradise in America's vacationland.
>>> SEE PHOTOS & VIDEO, NEWS FROM SOCIAL MEDIA
A new Zombie becomes final challenge for The Hukilau villagers
Upon completion of The Hukilau, villagers had one Final Destination: the "Hereafter Party at Death or Gory in Hellray Beach." To bring the theme full circle, The Atomic Grog presents a Zombie to end all Zombies.
>>> Event overview | Photos, recap
RECIPE: The Final (Destination) Zombie
Tiki Marketplace offers a taste of The Mai-Kai
The July 18 event featured vintage art and collectibles, food trucks, authentic Mai-Kai cocktails and entertainment.
>>> CHECK OUT THE PHOTOS AND VIDEO
Take a trip down the Tiki Trail for a lethal new Zombie recipe
It was a honor mixing up an original cocktail on the longest-running weekly online gathering of Tiki enthusiasts.
>>> Check out and order the special merchandise featuring new Zombie artwork
RECIPE: Tiki Trail Zombie from The Atomic Grog
The Atomic Grog 10th anniversary: Beware! Deadly Zombies ahead
After 10 years and more than 1 million page views, we take a look back at the blog's best posts and most popular cocktails. A special anniversary Zombie kicks off 10 months of deliciously dangerous drinks.
>>> RECAP: A decade of The Atomic Grog
>>> Tiki Top 10: Most popular blogs | More blog posts worth reading
Most popular cocktails | More drinks worth trying
NEW RECIPE: Revenge of the Atomic Zombie Cocktail
Zombie hunters: Beachbum Berry, Ed Hamilton join forces on rum blend
Two of the spirits and Tiki cocktail world's most respected figures are putting their names on the label of an exciting new release: Beachbum Berry's Zombie Blend from Hamilton Rum.
>>> FULL REPORT AND INTERVIEWS
NEW RECIPE: Hamilton Zombie by The Atomic Grog
The Mai-Kai hosts first Tiki Marketplace featuring vendors, entertainers, cocktails, rum tasting and more
The historic restaurant may be closed for repairs, but a new event took advantage of the large parking lot for a safe and fun-filled day featuring the generous spirit of 'ohana.
>>> PHOTOS, COVERAGE
Thousands of fans unite to show support for The Mai-Kai during closing
More than 10,000 signed a petition and thousands flooded social media channels as the historic restaurant sought potential partners in the wake of devastating storm damage.
>>> CLICK HERE FOR THE FULL STORY
2020 TOP STORIES
Year in the rearview: The Top 9 Tiki stories of 2020
Not all the news was negative in a year many would rather forget.
>>> See The Atomic Grog's picks for the news highlights of 2020
Bonus cocktail recipe: The Urban Archaeologist
The Year in Tiki 2020: Recap the top virtual and in-person events
Take a look back at the top happenings, featuring artwork and links plus photos and video.
>>> SEE THE FULL LIST
Photos: Remembering Dawn Wells at The Hukilau
Lucky villagers cherished the memorable chance to meet the actress at the Tiki weekender in June 2015.
>>> Photos of Dawn Wells at The Hukilau
The Mai-Kai celebrates 64th anniversary under the moon as challenges loom
Check out all the details on The Mai-Kai's sold-out 64th anniversary party on Dec. 28.
>>> CHECK OUT FULL STORY
Photos: The Mai-Kai's Polynesian Islander Revue
News: Extent of flooding damage, closing detailed
Previous coverge: Fundraisers, online sales aid The Mai-Kai
Rum Spotlight: Ed Hamilton brings new West Indies blend to Florida
Importer Ed Hamilton has announced the arrival of a new blend bottled for the Florida Rum Society.
>>> GET THE FULL REPORT
>>> 15 things you need to know about Ed Hamilton and Hamilton Rum
>>> Recipe: Hamilton Navy Grog, as served at The Mai-Kai
The Mai-Kai celebrates Hulaween 2020 with drive-in movie party after closing for renovations
The historic Polynesian restaurant transported revelers to a socially-distanced celebration like no other, including an appearance by Appleton Rum's Joy Spence. FULL EVENT RECAP
News: Latest on the temporary closing
Photos: Hulaween Drive-In Movie scene, costumes
Tribute recipe: Blood Island Green Potion #2
Daiquiris of Hope: Keeping the spirit of our favorite bars and bartenders alive
A salute to our favorite industry professionals in their time of need.
Daiquiri of Hope #2: Beachbum's Special Daiquiri (Dedicated to Jeff "Beachbum" Berry)
Daiquiri of Hope #1: Martiki's Merchant Daiquiri (Dedicated to Martin Cate)
Contributed: The Underground Cardamom Daiquiri (Dedicated to Tiki Underground)
Skinny Jimmy's Picks: 5 underappreciated surf bands of the first wave
The first wave of instrumental surf (late '50s through mid-'60s) included many bands that remained under the radar and lack the notoriety they deserve.
>>> AUDIO: See and hear Jimmy's top 5
2019 TOP STORIES
The Year in Tiki 2019: A look back at all the top events
Photos: 10 highlights from The Hukilau 2019 in Fort Lauderdale
Check out photos and video plus links and coverage of top happenings around the globe.
>>> BROWSE ALL THE PAST EVENTS
Take a look back at last year's festivities with dozens of photos and 10 memorable moments.
>>> SEE THE PHOTO RECAP
Bonus cocktail recipes: Passion Fruit West Indies (Pagan Idol) | Playboy (Tiki Underground)
Sippin' Santa comes to town: Beachbum Berry interview, plus recipes
We caught up with Tiki historian, author and bar owner Jeff "Beachbum" Berry to ask him about his growing family of Sippin' Santa surf shacks, the delicious drinks, and what makes holiday pop-up bars so popular.
Bonus recipes: Tribute to Christmas Eve of Destruction | Nutty Old Fashioned
Previous story: Another holiday Miracle: Sippin' Santa locations double
VIDEO & PHOTOS: Skinny Jimmy Stingray talks classic surf, performs at The Mai-Kai
Skinny Jimmy Stingray and his band rocked The Molokai bar during December's Retro Rekindled community gathering. The live set followed a Q&A with The Atomic Grog about the guitarist's journey from punk to instro surf.
>>> See new video and photos from the event
Skinny Jimmy's Picks: The all-time top 5 Dick Dale songs
Dick Dale uncovered something special in Southern California's sandy beaches that, like a powerful wave, could not be contained. In this second in a series of top 5 lists, Skinny Jimmy Stingray picks his favorite Dick Dale songs.
>>> AUDIO: See and hear Jimmy's top 5
Gone but not forgotten: Surf guitar pioneer Dick Dale, 1937-2019
We knew him as the "King of the Surf Guitar," but he was so much more than that. Check out our tribute featuring South Florida remembrances and photos plus obituaries and social media reaction.
>>> Dick Dale's discography and top YouTube videos
The living dead came to party at The Mai-Kai's Hulaween 2019 luau
After 10 years, we know what to expect from The Mai-Kai's infamous Hulaween party: Kooky costumes, rockin' tunes and many cocktails consumed in The Molokai bar. The 2019 bash lived up to those standards.
>>> Full recap and photo gallery
Eerie and evil tunes for your Halloween shindig
In this first in a series of special features on instro surf music, Skinny Jimmy Stingray gives us his picks for the most sinister surf songs. "Nothing echoes quite as ghoulishly as the sound of a reverb-soaked electric guitar."
>>> AUDIO/VIDEO: See and hear Jimmy's top five
What we learned at Appleton master blender Joy Spence's rum tasting
What could be better than an Appleton rum tasting at The Mai-Kai? How about the first-ever such event at the historic Polynesian palace hosted by Joy Spence, the longtime master blender for the venerable Jamaican brand.
>>> CHECK OUT OUR FULL RECAP AND PHOTOS
>>> Recipe: Joy Spence's favorite rum cocktail
The Hukilau 2019 rewind: Photos and video from social media
The Hukilau careened through Fort Lauderdale for its 18th annual Tiki weekender with an exhaustive schedule of events at the Pier Sixty-Six Hotel, B Ocean Resort and the historic Mai-Kai restaurant.
>>> SOCIAL POSTS FROM THE ATOMIC GROG AND VILLAGERS
The Atomic Grog presents new class and symposium at The Hukilau 2019
We took a virtual journey to the Caribbean to learn about the key rums and styles that have dominated The Mai-Kai's acclaimed cocktails for more than 60 years. Hurricane Hayward was joined by rum expert Stephen Remsberg for an Okole Maluna Cocktail Academy class at the Pier Sixty-Six hotel and by Cocktail Wonk writer Matt Pietrek for an on-stage symposium at The Mai-Kai.
>>> HEAR THE SYMPOSIUM: Inside the Desert Oasis Room podcast
>>> Full preview plus last year's recap and photos
>>> Related: The history of the potent, funky flavors from Guyana and Jamaica
New cocktail books, magazine prove Tiki underground is alive and thriving
Is the printed word is dead? The appearance of several new cocktail and recipes books, along with a quarterly magazine devoted to the revival of Polynesian Pop and mid-century culture, would indicate otherwise.
Surprise winner, new spirit of aloha at fifth annual Art of Tiki in South Beach
Find out how an unassuming chef beat out Miami's top mixologists in the South Beach Wine & Food Festival's tropical bartending competition.
>>> Full event coverage, cocktail reviews, exclusive photos and history
VIPs, connoisseurs of fine spirits flock to first Miami Rum Congress
The inaugural Miami Rum Congress was an unqualified success, a star-studded gathering of rum industry experts that sold out the cozy and picturesque Shane Center in Miami Beach.
>>> Photo gallery and event recap
Special event: 'Demerara Rum - The Mai-Kai's Secret Weapon'
The Atomic Grog was pleased to present a special happy-hour talk during The Mai-Kai Takeover event, presented by the Magical Tiki Meet-Up and Retro Rekindled.
>>> Full event recap and photos
Epcot's Native American exhibit includes Hawaiian, Polynesian artifacts
The Hawaii and California display spotlights one of seven geographic regions of art, both historical and modern, in the American Heritage Gallery.