The Lost Inferno is the sister property of Stowaway Tiki and we ended up having a couple hours to kill in southern Orange County so decided to make a quick trip down to San Clemente to check it out. This is tiki bar with thematic decoration from the 1985 movie The Goonies. As such, there are pirate elements including a great grotto cave featuring a waterfall and skulls embedded in the rock (thank you Bamboo Ben) but also a few tikis. The music is exotic and there’s a nice back bar with plenty of interesting rums and other spirits to choose from.
As regular readers are familiar, when I visit a new tiki bar the first cocktail is always a Mai Tai. This seemed like a poor choice when I remembered that I had the Mai Tai at Stowaway the previous day, and when delivered the cocktail looked identical. But something about this version was better balanced and more rum-focused (something I’ve heard subsequently from others, go figure). Mrs. Mai Tai’s Rocky Road cocktail was right up her alley featuring vodka, chocolate liqueur, marshmallow, and peanut butter.
This venue is not well advertised from the street, though the Sushi place upstairs is (ironic since that restaurant has a speakeasy entrance). The venue isn’t large but there are a few standing room spots and tables scattered throughout. Lost Inferno’s twist on the theme is welcome, while still providing an authentic and cohesive tiki bar experience that is definitely worth checking out.