Forbidden Island is a tiki bar at its best, offering everything it takes to capture that elusive blend of island kitsch, pure spectacle, and festive mood: a nautical wood interior, gaudy cocktails, a jukebox crammed with vintage Martin Denny and Frankie Laine tunes, and a tropical lanai for outdoor guzzling. It’s apparently the only tiki bar in America that makes fresh fruit juice in-house every day, and there are appetizers of the deep-fried variety. Entertainment includes live surf-rock bands and dance parties with DJs.
Owners Peter and Cindy Kahl are no strangers to the bevy of talented local musicians, having previously run San Franciscos famed Cafe du Nord. That means that in addition to serving traditional German food and bier in the elegant restaurant (which also includes an outdoor patio), Speisekammer also features some talented bluegrass, funk, blues, and Gypsy jazz musicians on Friday and Saturday nights. Conveniently located right off Park Street in Alameda, with plenty of free street parking.