Atlanta >Food & Dining > Trader Vic's
255 Courtland St NE, Atlanta, GA | Directions 3030333.761581 -84.384170
Neighborhoods: Northeast, Northeast, Downtown
Weird, Wacky, & Werewolves – With Atlanta being a convention city, there's two things we have plenty of- strip clubs and hotels. And the best place for us locals to get weird and party with tourist is Trader Vic's.
Sure, it's a chain, but it's a chain in places like London and Tokyo, not Stockbridge and Lawrenceville. Located inside the downtown Hilton, Trader's is almost like a hip Pacific Island family version of The Clermont Lounge. Everything just seems so mid 1980's, it's perfect. You keep waiting for Magnum P.I. to come in and question someone.
Thursday's is definitely the night to go. With the band Kingsized reformed as Tongi Hiti, giving their tropical versions of songs like Sade's "Smooth Operator", or on the spot request for Van Halen. And the $5 Mai Tai's and giant rum bowls will have you sugar buzzed like a 10th grader with out of town parents.
The tourist, wacky motif, and the mostly foreign staff give us locals a sense of a mini vacation in far away, exotic downtown Atlanta. And if you see a werewolf or a ghost of Warren Zevon at the bar, make sure you buy him a pina colada.
EXCELLENT FOOD, SERVICE, & VIBE! LOVE IT!! – Awesome drinks. You cannot and wil not get a better Mai Tai in the world. Vic invented the drink himself. The food from the wood fire ovens is so succulent and tender. We were treated with top notch service. The decor and vibe inside is classic Tiki to perfection. Thank God some idiot hasn't come in and redone the place as it's vintage TIki vibe is awesome. Very relaxed environment with high-end food and service. The drinks alone are stunning! You will not get better drinks in Hawaii, Tahiti, or anywhere. It's a little pricey but worth every dime. The negative feedbacks left previously range from amazing to clinically retarded. Trader Vic's is famous world wide- O'Charley's never will be. I cannot believe someone would stoop so low as to state that- to each their own. You can have your cookie-cutter O'Charley's I'll take Vic's anyday! This one hasn't been in business for over 30 years because of mediocre service and food. Those that think the vibe is cheesy are actually those type that have redone the world so now everything everywhere is practically the same everywhere you go- BORING! Trader Vic's will never be boring to those who appreciate great fun, food, drinks, and service. Thank you Trader Vic's Atlanta!!
Worst Experience – We called to make our reservations at the restaurant and were told there could be no jeans, short pants, and gentlemen must wear a jacket. When we arrived to a crowd of about 6 customers, we saw bathing suit trunks and a t-shirt on one man! The food was TERRIBLE, not to mention that the price for the food was ridiculous, to say the least! They have nothing on any of your restaurants, such as, O'Charley's, etc. In fact, the salmon at O'Charley's is MUCH better than here! After we left the restaurant, and my daughters checked their bank account, Trader Vic's had added $20 to the debit. If this is customary, it should be told to the customers using debit cards! We are waiting to see what's up with that!!! If you are contemplating dining here, you may as well go to a fast food restaurant in the area! And, if you do decide to go to Trader Vic's.....just go straight from the pool, you'll fit right in!
"Gilligan's Island"-meets-super hibachi at this fantasy-themed cult favorite. – The Scene
Hidden underneath the downtown Hilton, this large, dark room quickly seduces with elegant kitsch. Vic's Polynesian-themed surroundings overwhelm with carved wooden masks, bamboo, batik, flowered carpeting and the occasional turtle or blowfish dominating the decor. Huge barrel-like Chinese ovens sit in a glassed-in room, where a chef tends to pork, chicken, lamb, beef and salmon. Friendly servers with nametags announcing their birthplace pamper you like Mr. Howell--or Ginger.
An ambitious menu boasts a number of slow-roasted, fork-tender meat specialties from "world-famous ovens." The sheer variety of offerings ensures that even the largest of parties can find group happiness. But the real draw is the drinks. From the mai tai to the Scorpion Bowl fit for two (or three), the drinks capitalize on presentation. Cocktails arrive in ceramic coconuts, pineapples and even conch shells, all garnished with fresh fruit and the obligatory umbrella.
Best Rum Drinks in Atlanta – When you walk in I felt like I was in the movie "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas." That is what I loved about it. I didn't touch their food, and probably never would, but I did love the drinks. And the menus for the drinks were hilarious. I loved the decor. It is obviously over-done. The Tiki decor is awful, but that is what is so awesome about it. The cups they serve your rum in are hilarious, and at the same time awesome. I hear the bartender was voted best in Atlanta. I don't know if that is true or not, but I loved their drinks. Strong, and tasty is what I would say to anyone who wanted to try the drinks. The restaurant is relaxing, and someone please tell me where you can find a strong rum drink served in a skull in which they set on fire prior to serving you? Please go here for the drinks. I don't know about the food because I did not try it, but I really loved this bar. They weren't trying to incorporate all the night life garbage that can be associated with bars, and/or clubs, which means loud and God-awful music. When I am enjoying a drink I want it to be quite and relaxing, not have music blairing in my ear. I am only 22 years-old, so this review of bad music is not due to my age. Come here for some great rum, and a relaxing time. The food, well I cannot help you with that. Cheers!
WONDERFUL EXPERIENCE! – I took my fiance to Trader Vic's for his birthday. I was attracted by the Citysearch reviews, the menu, and atmosphere. As far as the atmosphere, some might think it's cheesy--we thought it was FUN.
Although it was a bit cumbersome parking and finding the right elevator, everything else was perfect. I made a reservation through Open Table, and indicated it was his birthday. The maitre'd greeted us and wished him a happy birthday. We were taken to a great table and greeted promptly by our server, Shen.
In the waiting area, there was free (and hot) Kung Pao chicken for people to eat while waiting--we didn't try it, but what a nice touch!
First, we ordered Mai-Tai's--strong and yummy! It was Thursday, so they were only $4.50 each! We ordered the fixed price Luau dinner which was incredible! (My fiance is a chef, and he was impressed!) The entrees were served tableside by our server--very cool.
When my fiance went to the restroom, Shen came to ask me what he wanted for dessert--if something other than what was included in the Luau meal. After an incredible dinner, she brought out a cheescake and extra chocolate concoction on a plate with "Happy Birthday" written in chocolate--this was a moment of excellence!
The entire meal was around $100 for two people--I think this is a good value for a special occasion dinner with drinks and 4-course meal!
Although her section was pretty full, she took care of us like we were her only table. Every employee we passed in the restaurant smiled and said hello--truly a rarity these days! Trader Vic's has a great atmosphere, and wonderful personality.
Classic Tacky & Terrific! Great Bar Food! – Whether you are a fan of "Gilligan's Island", a Keywest bum wannabee, or a hotel guest, or even a local-who just wants to getaway, without leaving the city, go to Trader Vic's, in the lowest part of the Downtown Hilton. Downtown is coming back, but those of us who are in the know, know that Trader Vic's Tiki Bar never left. Yes they have large dining rooms, overlooking the large Chinese BBQ ovens, but just stay in the bar area. The Mai-Tai, was orginated in the orginal location in Honolulu. Here it reins with many other concoctions, Grog, and my personal favorite, "The Suffering B--tard". And the next day, you will know why. Just order a pu-pu platter, of small Hawaian ribs, BBQ pork, coconut shrimp, with dipping sauces, drink and get leid!-Flower's around your neck! And explain this one to your other half the next day! Bartender's have won many awards, for the best in the city!
Cheesy Overpriced AWFUL!! – Whomever recommended this dump must not get out much - to start with, the decor was corny, ugly and dim. Some idiot's version of how Hawaii or any tropical island must look. The food was extremely overpriced for the cold, dry, tastless portions. Because of the good rating I brought relatives from out of town here (from Hawaii no less) and we were all severely disappointed and felt the entire theme, decor and food mocked the pacific islands. Do not go here if you are looking for a good meal!!!
Less than mediocre food at stupid prices – I dined at the Atlanta location and it was disappointing. While the drinks were done very well and had great flavors, my food was less than ordinary.
I ordered the Curry with Chicken. It was so bland, that the Curry flavor was the least pronounced. The toppings that come with it were the only items that gave it any flavor, but it is a dish that is on the shallow end of flavor. I am thinking it compares to a frozen entre for the masses.
As far as the service, it was good. And the decor is not cutting edge, but more of 50's basement with the Polynesian theme. Fun, but if you have ever been to the Tiki show at Disney, you will get the idea. Since the restaurant is in the basement of the Marriott, there is not a view to help out.
My companions dinners were a bit better, but nothing that could not be surpassed at a neighborhood restaurant that cared about the food.
Overall, I will not go back. To expensive for the quality.
Don't bother ... – ... unless you want to pay a lot for fast-food chinese and meat of undetermined origin. The food was horrible; we ordered the luau dinner, and the salad was the only good part. Drinks are interesting and pretty good, but the "ambience" is so 30 years ago, with old folks and business travelers stuck there because that's where they are staying.
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