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3641 Fishinger Rd
Opened in 2006
Closed in 2008
by 5 people
Tropical Bistro took over a space in a strip mall that was previously a rather typical Chinese buffet. It had many connections to the Kahiki Supper Club
Kahiki Supper Club
Bar & Restaurant
in nearby Columbus, which closed in 2000. The owners were Ngo and Soeng Thong; Ngo was a general manager at the Kahiki, and Soeng was a chef there. The Thongs tracked down many former employees for their new restaurant, including the Kahiki's Executive Chef, Mickey Cheung. Tropical Bistro still felt much more like a Chinese buffet than a tiki bar, but there were Orchids of Hawaii lamps from the Kahiki, monkey pod tables, and even a few tikis.
What Tropical Bistro was able to offer was the same food and drink menu as the Kahiki. Drinks were served complete with dramatic dry ice, and in tiki mugs. Those who missed a particular drink or dish from the Kahiki were excited at the arrival of Tropical Bistro.
Over time, with the help of dedicated locals, the Tropical Bistro built up its tiki level (including the addition of a scaled-down replica of the Kahiki's famous signature tiki fireplace).
Tropical Bistro closed for "minor remodeling" in January 2008. The closure was supposed to last for only one week, but Tropical Bistro never reopened.