Tiki is very much a thing right now. Since the closing of quintessential West Coast tiki bar, Trader Vic’s, Dallas has been a little behind on the tiki trend that has swept not only the U.S., but abroad. Yes, we’ve seen some great Tiki Tuesdays from Rapscallion and Small Brewpub, a tiki mug here and there from The Standard Pour and Bird Cafe and tiki-themed pop-ups from time to time, but it’s not enough. Dallas wants more overproof rum served in kitschy mugs, and with Pilikia opening tonight at 8 p.m., Dallas got it.
The team behind some of Dallas’ most theatrical bars — including The Tipsy Alchemist, Truth & Alibi and Punk Society — are giving us something new, at least for North Texas. Expect the usual tiki trappings —dramatic mugs, more straws and flowers than should ever be in a normal drink, some fire and all the great flavors that tropical locales could ever hope to deliver. And all of these things are delivered in an immaculately decorated space (in the space that was formerly Three Sheets) just outside of downtown. The space was updated with an additional outdoor bar and a stage for live music.
The menu offers some classic tiki options like Trader Vic’s Mai Tai, but they’ve remixed and rethought some of them to be a bit more ... Dallas. Either way, the drink options come strong not just with tiki game, but also in the booze department. Not a tiki fan? They offer a full bar — but whatever, hater.
You can go hard into the tiki theme with a drink or a shared bowl with friends. Not enough? Go for one of their large-format options that, for the most part, come delivered smoking to your table in a treasure chest or some equally over-the-top vessel. Just be careful what you order, because you could accidentally (or totally on purpose) find yourself with a $2,000 bar tab.
The food, some of which is offered in a veritable pu pu platter complete with an a flambé centerpiece, is brought to Pilikia by the Common Table’s Rodman Shields and is utterly mouthwatering. Also mouthwatering? Knowing that, once things are in full-swing, Pilikia will open on Sundays for pig roast luaus. To liven up the luaus, they’ll have live music in the spring.
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The former Three Sheets space underwent a remodel complete with the installation of an LED wall, campy luau lights hanging from the ceiling and the invasion of every piece of bamboo furniture ever made. The sweeping patio is still spacious and open and offers TVs, a bar and a fireplace. But we’re still looking for all the books that Three Sheets stored in its walls — here’s hoping they were donated to a worthy cause.
Stay tuned for Pilikia’s happy hour that will launch soon — until then, join them for a cocktail and more than a bit of trouble.
Pilikia, 3113 Ross Ave.