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  • Vintage Drink Recipe: The Asbury Park Cocktail

    Posted on September 28th, 2012 "Tiki Chris" Pinto 1 comment

    time-for-cocktailsNot so much a “Tiki” drink as I usually post, this recipe is in honor of the Asbury Park Boardwalk’s Weekend Tiki Festival going on right now in Asbury Park, New Jersey.

    The Asbury Park Cocktail

    I couldn’t find much info on where this drink originated, although by the ingredients, I’d have to guess it’s a mid-20th century concoction, maybe leaning closer to the 1930s. It’s a simple recipe that’s perfect for this time of year.asbury_park

    1 1/2 oz brandy
    1/2 oz apple brandy
    1/2 oz sweet vermouth
    Shake over rocks, strain into a Martini glass. Serve straight up; Optionally garnish with a slice of fresh red apple and cinnamon stick. To make it more of a “Tiki” drink, serve it in a Tiki mug!
    -Tiki Chris reporting from behind the bar at Tiki Lounge Talk
  • In Jersey this weekend? Go to Asbury Park for the Endless Summer Tiki Festival!

    Posted on September 27th, 2012 "Tiki Chris" Pinto 2 comments

    greetings_from_asbury_park-149190809_stdPeople don’t usually think of the Jersey Shore when they think of Tiki. The boards are about surf and sand, T-shirts and bikinis, hot dogs and fries, not so much about Mai Tais and Aloha shirts. But that’s changing this weekend, as the Asbury Park Boardwalk present their Polynesian-Inspired Event, The Endless Summer Tiki Festival!

    Get ready for three days of Poly-pop fun, kicking off on Friday, September 28. There will be plenty of Tiki-inspired events, movies, art, collectibles, and more for festival-goers of all ages.

    Here’s some info on the event from the Tiki Festival’s press release:

    “We couldn’t think of a better place to celebrate Tiki culture than on the Asbury Park Boardwalk,” commented Marilyn Schlossbach, owner of Langosta Lounge. “The boardwalk businesses, music venues, bars and restaurants are excited to program special events and promotions for Tiki fans from all over the country. We look forward to the ‘Endless Summer Tiki Weekend’ becoming an annual event in Asbury Park, joining the likes of the Ohana Luau in Lake George and the Long Beach Tiki Festival.”

    The “Endless Summer Tiki Weekend” will begin on Friday, September 28 with a special launch party and art show at the new Asbury Park Yacht Club on the Asbury Park Boardwalk. Polynesian pinball at the Silverball Museum, a bonfire on the beach, and a live drum circle hula-hoop performance will round out the opening night festivities.asburyboardwalk

    On Saturday, September 29, the Festival’s Rodeo Surf Contest will begin at 7:00 a.m. and include a full day of wave-riding in support of The Jersey Shore Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation. Later that day, animal lovers will be invited to bring their four-legged friends to the Wonder Bar for a Tiki-inspired Yappy Hour and pet-friendly fashion show. The Festival will continue with a Tiki golf tournament at Asbury 18 Mini Golf, Tiki carving, lei-making and hula-hopping lessons at various boardwalk locations.  The classic 1961 film “Blue Hawaii” presented by the Asbury Park Film Initiative will screen on the Third Avenue Beach at 8:00 p.m.  The Jersey Shore Roller Girls will also entertain Tiki crowds with a bout at Convention Hall.

    The third and final day of the “Endless Summer Tiki Weekend” will include another Tiki Yappy Hour at the Wonder Bar, the continuation of the “Endless Summer Tiki Art Show” at the Asbury Park Yacht Club, and a pool party at the Berkeley Oceanfront Hotel. Blue Hawaii Vintage will present a vintage fashion show in the Carousel starting at 2:00 p.m. and Elvis fans can find El King, the Hawaiian Elvis, strolling the boards on Sunday with a special 3:45 performance on the 4th Avenue Green Space.  Attendees will then be invited to bring their beach chairs and towels to Asbury Park’s 3nd Ave. beach for a screening of the original “Endless Summer.”

    wonderbarIn addition to the varied day-time events, live music at legendary Asbury Park music venues, including the Stone Pony and Wonder Bar, will be programmed in conjunction with the Festival. The Berkeley Oceanfront Hotel will offer festival-goers with a discounted room rate throughout the weekend; interested parties are instructed to mention the event when securing a reservation. For more info visit the website at www.apboardwalk.com

    Unfortunately I won’t be able to attend the event, since I’m about 1400 miles away, but it does sound like fun. Like the “Yappy Hour”…all I can think of is a bunch of dogs getting tanked on Zombies.

    This event reminds me of some of the Tiki-ness that the Wildwood Boardwalk used to have. There was a Poly-themed motel there, years ago, and a snack bar on the boardwalk that was decorated like a Tiki hut. The piers always had rides with Tiki themes too, over the years, and lots of plastic palm trees.

    Anyway, Cheers to the good people of Asbury Park for keeping the Tiki tradition alive, and here’s to hoping you have a fun and prosperous Endless Summer Tiki Weekend!

    -Tiki Chris P. reporting from the travel center at Pirate’s Cove Tiki Lounge, hidden somewhere in Fort Lauderdale, FL

  • Lolita, 1962 – Your Old Movie Recommendation for Mod Movie Monday

    Posted on September 10th, 2012 "Tiki Chris" Pinto No comments

    lolita-1962Get a new suggestion for an old movie every Monday at Tiki Lounge Talk.

    This week we venture into the slightly disturbing yet engaging mind of Stanley Kubrick, with his first independent film,

    Lolita, 1962

    Starring James Mason, Shelly Winters, Peter Sellers and Sue Lyon.

    For those of you who don’t know the original story of Lolita, it was a book about a middle-aged man who fell in love with a sexually active 12 year old girl. The censors insisted on making the movie slightly less creepy by increasing the girl’s age to 14…and Kubrick took off with it.

    Lolita

    Lolita

    Kubrick scrapped much of the book (and a screenplay written by the book’s author) to make his own brand of dark comedy, a movie fun and disturbing at the same time. He masterfully turns each scene, making the viewer sympathize with Professor Humbert (Mason) just long enough to then realize he is basically a starstruck pedophile. By the end of the flick you don’t know what’s right, what’s wrong, or how to feel. It’s a groovy scene, man.

    lolitaConsider this flick, which goes pretty far in suggesting Professor Humbert is sleeping with Lolita, was released in 1962. This was the same era when absolutely zero cursing, nudity or realistic gore was allowed in American movies. This was the era when Rock ‘n’ Roll music was still considered “devil music” and Chuck Berry was in jail for transporting an underage girl across state lines.

    The plot is simple…Humbert, a British literature professor, takes up residence in a quaint New Hampshire house run by Charlotte Haze (Winters). At first he doesn’t want to take the room…until he sees Charlotte’s daughter, Lolita. We assume he probably doesn’t realize at first how young she is, considering she looks like she’s about 20 and acts as sleazily flirtatious as an experienced stripper. This sets up the audience to accept the blooming relationship, at least on some level, as one of a guy in his 40s with a chick in her 20s (perfectly acceptable, right?). Then Kubrick slams us over the head with scenes that very definitely show us her true age, and our brains go swimming with idea of a grown man cheating on his wife with his 14 year old stepdaughter. In a sort of a dark, funny way, of course. Eh, yeah.

    Lolita and Humbert in a very suggestive scene.

    Lolita and Humbert in a very suggestive scene.

    The movie moves from a sordid fantasy to a sordid affair, to a journey across America for the stepfather and stepdaughter on the run from themselves and others. I won’t give anymore than that away, you’ll have to watch the flick for yourself to get the details.

    Keep in mind this movie was made under the probing eyes of strict mid-century censors. It’s almost unbelievable that the flick passed ANY censorship, considering its context. I suppose calling it a “dark comedy” helped, but even with Peter Sellers in the movie you won’t find too many “laugh out loud” moments. It’s more like “it’s funny because it’s so far out and so damned uncomfortable”, IMHO.

    sue-lyon-lolita-1962-09-gYou also won’t find as much symbolism in the movie as you will in later Kubrick films. There is some, no doubt, but I’m guessing he was having a hard enough time getting the movie made without getting arrested without having to figure out two hours of symbolism.

    Trivia: Carry Grant turned down the Humbert role “in indignation”. Haley Mills turned down the roll of Lolita…probably under the direction of Walt Disney. Over 800 girls auditioned for the roll of Lolita…proving that plenty of young actresses and their stage Moms were A-OK with this controversial role.

    Food & Booze: Just booze. The hard stuff. You’ll need it watching this flick.

    Sue Lyon: Went on to make a few more movies, including Night of the Iguana in 1964 and Tony Rome in 1967. Her last movie was Alligator (yes, the one with the giant alligator in the sewers) in 1980 where she had a small part as a newswomen. She retired after that and, at the time of this posting, she’s 66 years old. Yep.

    Here’s the Mod Movie Trailer for Lolita:

    -Tiki Chris reporting from a seedy motel where the clerk doesn’t check ID, for Tiki Lounge Talk

  • VERTIGO, 1958 – Hitchcock’s Finest for Mod (Noir) Movie Monday

    Posted on September 4th, 2012 "Tiki Chris" Pinto No comments

    vertigo_posterI know it’s Tuesday…gimme a break, yesterday was a national Holiday!

    What happens when a middle-aged detective suddenly learns he has an intense fear of heights? He quits the force…only to get dragged back into the investigation business at the behest of an old friend.

    VERTIGO, 1958

    Starring Jimmy Stewart, Kim Novak & Barbara Bel Geddes
    Directed by Alfred Hitchcock

    Stewart brilliantly plays the ex-cop who, as a favor to an old college buddy, agrees to follow his wife. It seems she’s been traveling to strange places, and the guy believes she’s actually not herself when she does…in fact, he believes she’s been possessed by the spirit of her great grandmother. He fears for her life, of course, since the GG ended her own life with a nosedive out of a tower. Stewart follows…and winds up falling for the dame (Novak). You can probably see where this is heading…but in true Hitchcock style, you must be prepared to expect the unexpected.

    Helloooo, Kimmy

    Helloooo, Kimmy

    Giant redwoods, an old Spanish mission, and tons of great shots of late 1950’s San Francisco play into this strange mystery. Throw in a mod-style cartoon depicting Stewart’s fear of heights and some very kool 50s rides, and you’ve got a sort of time capsule that swings you back to CAL in the mid-20th century.

    Vertigo was nominated for two Oscars and Hitchcock was nominated for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Motion Pictures by the Directors Guild of America. Unlike some of Hitchcock’s other infamous flicks, it’s filmed in Technicolor, which adds a lot to the vibrance of the characters and the “historical” qualities of this 1950’s slice of Americana.

    vertigo-stewart-desotoSome interesting tidbits about the film (no spoilers)

    “Uncredited second-unit cameraman Irmin Roberts invented the famous “zoom out and track in” shot (now sometimes called “contra-zoom” or “trombone shot”) to convey the sense of vertigo to the audience. The view down the mission stairwell cost $19,000 for just a couple of seconds of screen time.”

    “The building exterior used for Madeleine’s apartment building is located at 1000 Mason St., across the street from the Fairmont Hotel.”

    “Poorly received by U.S. critics on its release, this film is now hailed as Alfred Hitchcock’s masterpiece.”

    Here’s the trailer…

    -Tiki Chris reporting from the Golden Gate Bridge.

  • Happy Labor Day from Tiki Lounge Talk!

    Posted on September 3rd, 2012 "Tiki Chris" Pinto No comments
    How about this cheesey, '80s-retro-style diner sign I made? As if it were in a diner in the 1980s that was trying to look like it was from the 1950s. All it needs is Cheap Trick playing Don't Be Cruel.

    It’s the last weekend of the summer for many of you kats, the last chance to get in a swingin’ weekend at the beach or park or lake..or maybe the last week to surf! While you enjoy your BBQ with a Jet Pilot or Zombie, dig these tunes to get you in the surfin’ mood…

    PIPELINE – The Chantays

    Surfin’ Bird – The Trashmen

    Surfin’ & Swingin’, Misirlou, Wedge, Dick Dale

    Surf Rider, The Lively Ones

    Have a happy Labor Day you ker-razy kats & kittens!

    -Tiki Chris reporting from the surf shop behind Pirate’s Cove Tiki Bar