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Monday, April 2, 2012

NYC Tiki Bar: Otto's Shrunken Head

Otto's Shrunken Head

538 East 14th Street

Otto’s was the first to come up on my Google search when looking for tiki bars in New York City. Therefore, I had to try it. Located between “East Side 99 Cent Store” and the elegantly trash-bag-chic “Rainbow” clothing dump, was this neon-lit sign calling me in for a mid-day zombie.

The décor was beachy, tacky, neon, and creepy. I loved it. The walls had giant Hawaiian prints hanging, with neon blowfish lighting over the bar. PBR’s are always $3, and there’s a lengthy happy hour running 2-8PM, but I sprung for the $10 tiki drink. The menu had several different cocktails, each served in a different glass. It’s an additional $5 deposit for the funky glass because, well, I guess people try to steal at Otto’s. Anyway, $10 plus a $5 deposit later, I got the house specialty, Otto’s Shrunken Head.  “Dark and sweet with a little bite. Keeps ya head screwed on tight”. It was everything I could’ve asked for in a tiki drink: rummy, coconutty, fruity. And that's my professional critique. I also tried Otto’s Octane. “Our pineapple rum, coffee liquer, and banana concoction will help speed you to your destination”. This was not as good as the other one but still got the job done. 

Eventually, I would like to try each of the tiki drinks on the menu. But let’s face it, unless I am in the area on a “Rainbow” shopping spree, I don’t see how I will stumble across Otto’s again. The location was strange for me, so unless I make the conscious decision to revisit, I'll never drink from that shrunken head again. Okay I'll go back, but I will be taking the tiki glasses home with me!

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