Alameda >Bars & Clubs > Forbidden Island
1304 Lincoln Ave, Alameda, CA | Directions 9450137.774639 -122.263007
Tuesday to Thursday 5 p.m.-midnight Friday and Saturday 5 p.m.-2 a.m. Sunday 3 p.m.-10 p.m. Closed Mondays
3 Star can be given to them – We usually want a more interesting menu to choose from so we go out of town, but on occasion we stop in. BTW The service is usually good and fast.
Best drinks in the Bay area, Seriously! – Forbidden Island is an delicious escape from everything, I've been there several times in the past year and have never been disappointed. It's not just the drinks that are amazing, the entire atmosphere is great. I can't wait to get back there.
Best China Clipper – I like the place, I like the outdoor patio although I don' t understand why the servers cannot serve drinks there (because it is a parking?) but I have yet to receive good service there, especially when it gets near closing time. I am sorry but aren' t you working for tips? I enjoy drinking their China Clipper cocktail. They have a wide selection of rums including top shelf Venezuelan rums (and the rums are all located on the top shelf). On weekend nights, I have now noticed a roped entrance with the obligatory guard at the door. It means two things. The place is crowded and I am making a U turn to go somewhere else.
Painted Pig with a grass skirt – This dive bar gone tiki is a great after work hangout. Drinks are generally strong and well made, however service is slow and some of the bartenders are superior to others. (The chicks seem to know what they're doing better than the men.) Don't bother with the food. Its over priced and is only edible after 2-3 of their Hurricanes or Royal Hawaiians. There is outdoor seating in back for the smokers, however the waitress is not allowed to serve out there.
Overall its a neat destination that creates conversation.
This nails traditional tiki bars - great place – Have frequented Forbidden Island since June. Great ambiance. Kinda reminds me of Trader Vics. And as traditional Tiki bars go, it's ambient lit. It's not supposed to be sunny -- it's like walking into the galley of a wrecked shipped in Polynesia. Every time I go in there I notice different details. There are two new bartenders, but theyre all consistently pleasant and mix darned good drinks: Sonya, Jennifer, Jim, and Ryan. Know them by name because they always greet customers and chat when it's not super busy. The drinks range from sour to sweet. Depends on what you want. Having tried most things on the menu, theyve all been good. A couple were not to my taste, but they seemed popular with others. Weekends are ok, but if you want to avoid the crowds, really experience the details, and get to know the bartenders (who will share with you the art of mixology) try going on a weeknight.
Pretentious service and a bar so dark you can hardly see – I absolutely loathe this place. I started out really liking it, going there with my sister one Friday night. I had the pirate grog which was very good, albeit expensive, and my sister got something I can't recall the name of but the recipe needed work, it was sickly sweet.
The service was ok that time, we were helped by a woman I know who is actually pretty good. The men bartenders were terrible though. In a bar you want great service, affordable and stiff drinks and a great atmosphere. You also want to feel welcomed. The second time we tried to return we were treated very rudely. Not one to just give up my husband and I tried again last night to celebrate our 1 year anniversary and were turned away for a private rum event. They didn't even have a sign on the door, we walked in and were met with a lot of stares from the people at the event. My question about this is who closes their bar during happy hour for a private event? There may have been 10 people there tops. You do that during the day, not at 6:30 pm when people want a drink.
To sum it up, this place does not fit my bill for a good bar:
Service? TERRIBLE. The guys behind the bar don't make you feel like you are welcome or would want to return.
Drinks? Good, but way too expensive. I would much rather spend my money at La Pinata where they cost the same and you don't feel so unwelcome.
Ambience? They used an old familiar Alameda bar that is legendary for being really dark. When I think of a tiki bar, I think sunshine. Not a place so dark you can't even see the people you have come with.
I would not recommend it, unless you are into places that treat their customers rudely.
Editorial Review – This fanciful 1960s-style tiki lounge serves up waterfalls, bamboo huts and inventive cocktails made with fresh-squeezed juices and seasonal ingredients.
It's like a mini vacation to the South Pacific – So if you haven't heard yet the Forbidden Island in Alameda is happening! I was completely blown away by what was waiting for me inside. Tasty drinks mixed by a knowledgeable and skilled staff, exotic ambiance aplenty and a fantastttic selection of tunes on the jukebox. The Foridden Island sets the standard for what a tropical watering hole should look, sound and taste like. If you happen to find yourself anywhere in the vicinity of the San Francicso bay area you have got to stop in and experience the enchanted magic that Martiki, Conga Mike, his Brother Mano, Bamboo Ben and their family and friends have created.
Check it out! – Forbidden Island deserves high marks on everything- excellent drinks, inviting atmosphere, great service After an evening here, you feel like youve been away on vacation! The decor is gorgeous and so thoughtful every seat in the house provides a unique experience, whether youre sitting at the bar watching the master bartenders, nestled in your own thatch hut, or lounging by the waterfall. The drink selection is amazing, and each drink looks as good as it tastes. My favorites so far: the coconut kallaloo and the combover (for sipping while you munch tasty treats from the kitchen) and the Chamborlada and Banana Mamacow are not to be missed if youre in the mood for something decadent and dessert-y. On a scale of 1-10, this one goes to 11!
FANTASTIC!! – In a word, Forbidden Islands was absolutely FANTASTIC! It is on a quiet residential block, but inside it is full of energy and fun! The music (not live) was upbeat and fun. The drinks were some of the best drinks I have ever had. They have "bowl" drinks for up to four people. Sooooo GOOD! All of the bartenders were very attentive and really nice, even after you get a little tipsy. If you want to have a great time, this is definitely the place to go! Good mix of older and younger clientele.
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