Trad'r Sam

Dive Bar / Tiki Bar
Trad'r Sam It may get cold and damp on the city's west side, especially way out in outer Richmond, but it always smells like sun-drenched pineapples and rum at Trad'r Sam, a tiki-themed dive that's been serving up big bowls of sugary... San Francisco United States 37.780231 -122.485645
4.16 10
Trad'r Sam - Dive Bar | Tiki Bar in San Francisco.
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Ratings:
Lucas
Adriana
Jonah
Emma

Party Earth Review It may get cold and damp on the city’s west side, especially way out in outer Richmond, but it always smells like sun-drenched pineapples and rum at Trad’r Sam, a tiki-themed dive that’s been serving up big bowls of sugary... ... read full review

  • Phone:

    415-221-0773

  • Hours:

    Daily 11am–2am

  • Recommended as:

    • Night Spot

Party Earth Trad'r Sam Review

The Scene

It may get cold and damp on the city's west side, especially way out in outer Richmond, but it always smells like sun-drenched pineapples and rum at Trad'r Sam, a tiki-themed dive that's been serving up big bowls of sugary...

It may get cold and damp on the city’s west side, especially way out in outer Richmond, but it always smells like sun-drenched pineapples and rum at Trad’r Sam, a tiki-themed dive that’s been serving up big bowls of sugary sweet drinks to a party-happy young crowd since the 1930s.

Surfboards, palm fronds, life preservers, and a stuffed parrot form the backdrop for the round bar that acts as focal point in the single-room venue, while bamboo booths provide ample space for the working-class locals who drop in during the week to catch a game or land a few summer cocktails.

Come the weekend – which apparently starts on Thursday in the tiki universe – the bar is packed to the gills with everyone from frat boys and newly minted twenty-one-year-olds to unapologetic cougars hell bent on guzzling slushies until they hit the sticky floor.

Folks who have wandered in out of the cold are quickly inducted into the rum lover’s scene through heavy-handed favorites like the Scorpion Bowl or the Zombie, though the loud whir of blenders is easily drowned out by the clamorous conversation and the focus on flirting.

Trad’r Sam’s fun-loving patrons know full well they’ll be feeling it in the morning, yet like a school of sand crabs, they keep crawling back, thirsty for more.

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Tip from Emma:

They’re not kidding when they say the Scorpion Bowl stings! Be sure to bring plenty of pals to help you out, because if you tackle it by yourself, you’ll either be sexting your ex-bf or crying in a corner by 2am.

  • Crowd

    Frat boys, blue-collar types, party girls, young tourists, and a good sampling of young-at-heart older folks, early 20s to late 30s.

  • Entertainment / Music

    Jukebox with a wide selection of tunes. TVs tuned mostly to sports.

  • Food / Miscellaneous

    Snack food like chips and peanuts. Cash only. ATM on site.

  • Prices

    Snacks $1. Beer $3.25–$4.50, cocktails $4–$7, Scorpion Bowls and other shared drinks $14–$16. Jukebox $1/two songs.

  • What to Wear / Dress Code

    Anything goes: polos, khakis, sexy skirts, vintage duds.

  • Hot Nights / When to Go

    Thursdays through Saturdays for a packed and rowdy scene that runs all night, or earlier in the week for a mellower vibe and more space to attack that Scorpion Bowl.

  • Close By

    Tommy’s Mexican Restaurant (5929 Geary Boulevard) offers a full restaurant and a lengthy tequila menu, including margaritas and some of the rarest sipping tequilas in town.

Trad'r Sam User Reviews

Average rating:
For that "going out" feeling
Bambi J. Jun 4, 2013
After a few days of staying inside and watching Netflix, we all get that itch to go out and get the party monkey off our backs. Not just any place can satisfy that urge, especially in San Francisco, home of the mellow dive bar (not that anything's wrong with that). But Trad'r Sam's is definitely the place to go for a truly satisfying social experience. It's loud, it's crowded, and the drinks are strong enough to leave you uninhibited enough to talk to anyone. Speaking of drinks, that's exactly what the bar is famous for. It's a tiki themed bar with giant, delicious drinks meant to be shared between a group. It's the type of place you can go alone and soon find yourself surrounded by a group of new friends sharing drinks. The weekdays can be a bit more mellow. It's quieter and significantly less crowded. On the weekends, the bar features a variety of different music from old school rap to rock, always loud and always good. The truly beautiful thing about Trad'r Sam's on the weekends is that even though the drinks are strong and the music is loud, it's too packed to dance and make a proper drunken fool of yourself. Definitely not your sit in the corner, sip a beer, and read a book kind of a bar (again, not that anything's wrong with that).
Tikki Bar in the Outer Richmond
Kimberly K. May 13, 2013
Don't come here unless you're planning on having a wicked hangover the next morning. Most 20 somethings (or 30 somethings trying to prove that they can still drink) come here as a last call to drink a scorpion bowl to keep the party going. That's a lovely concoction of about 5 liquors and lots of sugar. It's served in a bowl with about 10 straws. They also make pretty awesome pina coladas and mai tais, but be warned, these are no girly drinks as 2 will knock you on your ass. Crowd can change depending on the hour from out of town tourists to drunks to ladies of the evening. Sit at the bar, sip your mai tai slowly and watch the place evolve hour after hour. Also make sure you planned how your getting home, as this place is hidden deep in the outer richmond, not the easiest to get a cab
Tiki Fail
Jessica C. Apr 24, 2013
I usually love hanging out at tiki themed bars and sipping on topical drinks. I really, REALLY wanted to like this place, but it was crowded and stuffy from the moment we walked in. The waitress sat us at a table way too small for our group of 10. Not long after our scorpion bowl arrived, we found a strand of hair floating on top that obviously belonged to the blond and long-bearded bartender. Eek! The worst part was, we informed our waitress but she refused to serve us a new drink... at first. I guess she changed her mind after realizing how disgusting it was, and so she eventually brought out a new bowl. I just hope the bartender didn't spit in the second one. I did not have a great first experience at Trad'r Sam. Customer service was definitely lacking that night. But it is conveniently located in the Richmond district, and I can see the potential this place has, so I am willing to give it a second try the next time I'm in San Francisco.
Easily One of the Most Fun Bars in the City
Wilder S. Apr 23, 2013
Trad'r Sam's is, if not the best Tiki Bar in the city, the most accessible. If you don't feel like waiting in a six-hundred year line for Smuggler's Cove, Trad'r Sam's is your place. The bartenders are friendly, fun, and have no problem fixing you a strong drink. Not enough ice-cream in your drunken adventures through the Richmond district? Don't worry, Trad'r Sam's has ice-cream drinks. Get yourself a Butterscotch Surprise and then mail me a check for one-thousand dollars for changing your life. Not happy with the music that most bars play? They've got a jukebox. Not a fan of Tiki drinks, and just sticking out the night with your friends while you wish you were at Buckshot? They've got a decent beer selection. Like nachos? Sometimes they have nachos. Scorpion Bowls are consistently a grand-slam, and the atmosphere almost always lends itself to making new friends. They've also got a good amount of drinks on their "secret menu", so you can mail me another check if you want to know about them. Moral of the story, Trad'r Sam's the place to be. And there's a bunch of food nearby that you can stuff your face with when you stumble out their doors. See ya there.
Original Tiki Hut
Marla F. Feb 20, 2013
I love this bar because it's right by my house. The drinks here are all quite tasty, and the bartenders are always up for a good conversation. Everyone comes here for the scorpion bowls, which in my opinion are pretty damn good. The atmosphere is a bit funky inside, but the bar kind of has a dive feeling to it. Great place to hang out with friends, and meet some new people at. If you are cool, and make friend with the bartenders, you might just get yourself a free shot or two.
Tiki Tiki
Rachel G. Nov 21, 2012
The scorpion bowls are booooomb here, plus they put cute umbrellas in them! When it comes to a drink, most of the things I look forward to are garnishes and style! The drinks here always aim to please. The tiki theme is so well suited for this place. I am not particularly found of going to locations that have such a theme, but I for some reason like this place a lot. But let's get back to the scorpion bowls. These things are deadly, much like jungle juice they are sweet and throw down really easily. I love these, but really beware. They get you drunk so fast!
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