Well after a bit of will they / won’t they concerning the future of Tiki Ti, it’s nice to see that the beloved Los Feliz Tiki drink spot is back in the saddle. Except — uh oh — you can’t smoke inside anymore.
The surely upsetting news first broke on Facebook about a day ago, and has since been picked up across Los Angeles, as longtime fans react to the news. Tiki Ti was perhaps the last remaining public eating and drinking place that could allow smoking indoors in L.A., because they don’t technically have any employees, only owners from the Buhen family. The law was designed to actually protect employed waitstaff more than the occasional drink-and-a-smoker, so as long as ownership (the family) was cool with everyone puffing away, then so be it. And for many years, that’s exactly what happened, with Mike Buhen Sr. himself firing up the occasional cigar inside.
Now, as changes continue behind the scenes at Tiki Ti, it looks as though Saturday will be the last time you can light up indoors without getting tossed out. Comments on the Facebook post announcing the change are mixed, with many people coming out in support of the no smoking rule, while still others are up in arms at yet another loss of freedom. So it goes.
As long as Tiki Ti itself doesn’t go anywhere for another half-century or so (at least), the city is still winning.