Crown & Co. Barbers unveils boozy California Lane extension King Tiki
Four years ago, tiki and retro-inspired barber outfit Crown & Co. opened on Fortitude Valley’s Brunswick Street strip, and has been deftly lining up patrons ever since. Last year saw the barbershop undergo a significant evolution thanks to the development of California Lane, affording the Crown & Co. crew the opportunity to open an on-site tiki bar at the venue’s rear. King Tiki is a charming specialty boozer offering authentic tiki cocktail recipes, craft beer and plenty of friendly chat.
Long before the news of California Lane’s arrival hit our ears, Mel Love at Crown & Co. barbershop knew it was coming. She was given advance warning of the anticipated development, which promised Mel and her neighbours a boost in foot traffic and a surplus of seating along the laneway’s length – an ideal opportunity to try something new. Seeing a gap in the Fortitude Valley market for a tiki bar, Mel and her team rolled up their sleeves and got to work transforming part of Crown & Co.’s interior space into King Tiki. Crown & Co. was condensed, removing its Brunswick Street-facing coffee bar and two barber chairs to make room for the bar setup, which was fleshed out with Mel’s own collection of original tiki furniture and paraphernalia. The finished space boasts neon signage, eye-catching artwork, an authentic bamboo bar top and plenty of comfy furniture spilling out into the laneway.
With the aesthetics locked in place, it was time to develop a drinks list to match. King Tiki looks to maintain as much authenticity as possible by adhering to the original recipes of the first tiki cocktails, developed by hospitality legends such as Trader Vic’s Victor Jules Bergeron, Jr and Donn Beach. The current cocktail menu features Trader Vic’s mai tai (first made in 1944), Donn Beach’s zombie (reportedly invented in 1934), pina coladas, passionfruit mojitos and shareable fishbowl cocktails. The menu will soon expand to Kraken rum espresso martinis and King Tiki’s own interpretation of the bloody Mary. The back bar is stocked with top-tier rums, including Angostura’s aged Caribbean rum, Gosling’s 151 Proof, Appleton Estate and Pusser’s. Craft-beer lovers will relish browsing King Tiki’s selection of ales, with a roster encompassing local brews from Black Hops Brewing, Ballistic Beer Co., Young Henrys and Green Beacon Brewing, as well as some mainstream classics for fans of XXXX and VB. King Tiki will introduce cheeseboards later this month, but those feeling extra peckish are welcome to order from the bar’s neighbouring restaurants such as Fat Dumpling and Giardinetto and eat while sipping on a cocktail.
You can find more information on King Tiki in the Stumble Guide.
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