The Mai-Kai is going mobile: We definitely need an app for that

Updated Jan. 9, 2013
NEW: Tap into The Mai-Kai anywhere with the new smartphone app

The Mai-Kai drink app by Go11 Media

UPDATE: April 26, 2012

As not-so-subtly hinted at below, a special announcement was made on Saturday, April 21, at The Mai-Kai during The Hukilau main event that indeed a new drink app has been developed by Go11 Media and will be introduced soon.

The Hukilau event program also included information for attendees to sign up to be beta testers of the app when it’s released. The Atomic Grog signed up, and we’ll pass along info and reviews once we’re able to get a look at it.

According to Go11, iPhones, iPads and iPods will begin testing soon. There are also instructions for Andriod users on the Go11 site. Apple allows only 100 users as testers, so there may or may not be any spots left. If you’re interested, you can find further instructions here.

The app will allow users to track and rate The Mai-Kai cocktails, suggest them to friends and much more. It promises to be the perfect accompaniment to The Atomic Grog’s Mai-Kai Cocktail Guide.

Check back for updates soon.

Original story from April 16

The Tiki hordes have not yet descended on The Mai-Kai in Fort Lauderdale for the 2012 Hukilau (the annual Polynesian Pop festival runs Thursday through Sunday), but there’s a flurry of activity at the 55-year-old landmark restaurant.

This mysterious phone was spotted at The Mai-Kai

This mysterious phone was spotted at The Mai-Kai.

And not all of the activity is behind the bar or in the kitchen. Last night, some Atomic Grog readers spotted a cellphone that someone left on the bar near the front of The Molokai lounge, so they went to make sure it wasn’t left by a customer. They couldn’t help but notice what looked like an application loaded on the phone (see photo). It appeared to have Mai-Kai graphics but it wasn’t the Web site. They quickly snapped this photo, but before they could pick up the phone the waitress quickly grabbed it and disappeared into the back office with some urgency.

I checked with a different source who I knew was at the bar during the previous hours and they reported seeing Mai-Kai owner Dave Levy and marketing director Pia Dahlquist in some sort of meeting with Hukilau photographer Bill Dillard (aka Bohemiann). We all also know Bill as the leader of the creative team from Go11 Media, creators of The Mai-Kai Web site.

“They were all sitting around looking at something on smart phones, speaking in hushed tones, and giggling like little kids,” the source said. He couldn’t tell me if they were enjoying happy hour, which could explain the giggling.

The Mai-Kai's Web site

The Mai-Kai's Web site was designed by Go11 Media.

So what could be afoot? Could it be a Web site update, or something more? The Go11 Web site prominently touts its new media services, such as mobile and apps. Calls to The Mai-Kai regarding this matter have yet to be returned, but Go11 co-owner Dillard released this statement when pressed:

“I can neither confirm nor deny that something fabulous is under development for The Mai-Kai, and I certainly could not say that a significant announcement will be made Saturday night at The Mai-Kai during The Hukilau, probably just before the first dinner show. However, if something were to be under development, I can promise no animals were harmed during its development. We only test on humans.”

He did, however, admit off the record to giggling like a little kid. When I caught up with Christie “Tiki Kiliki” White – Hukilau co-founder, producer and organizer – she gave me the standard “no comment” but said it with a Cheshire Cat grin and a twinkle in her eye.

We promise to pursue this story like a flower on a Lei. Stay tuned for further updates. And stop that giggling.

The Mai-Kai
* Official site | Facebook page

From The Atomic Grog
* Mai-Kai Cocktail Guide | Exclusive tour of The Mai-Kai’s bars and kitchen

The Hukilau
* Official site | Facebook page | Facebook group

From The Atomic Grog
* Polynesian Pop movie sneak peak and other Hukilau updates
* Beachbum Berry digs deep to unearth vintage Zombies
* Heeeeeeere’s the rich history and lost stories of The Mai-Kai
* Sven Kirsten added to 2012 lineup | Full Hukilau coverage

About Hurricane Hayward

A professional journalist and Florida resident for more than 30 years, Jim "Hurricane" Hayward shares his obsession with Polynesian Pop and other retro styles on his blog, The Atomic Grog. Jim's roots in mid-century and reto culture go back to his childhood in the 1960s, when he tagged along with his parents to Tiki restaurants and his father's custom car shows. His experience in journalism, mixology, and more than 20 years as an independent concert promoter make him a jack-of-all-trades in the South Florida scene. A graduate of the University of Florida's College of Journalism and Communications, Jim is a longtime web producer for The Palm Beach Post. In his spare time, he has promoted hundreds of rock, punk, and indie concerts under the Slammie Productions name since the early 1990s. In 2011, he launched The Atomic Grog to extensively cover events, music, art, cocktails, and culture with a retro slant. Jim earned his nickname by virtue of both his dangerous exotic drinks and his longtime position producing The Post's tropical weather website.
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