San Diego's Bali Hai Restaurant Celebrates Three Millionth Mai Tai Milestone

May 21, 2024

San Diego's Bali Hai Restaurant toasted a monumental achievement this week as it served its three millionth Mai Tai, solidifying its status as the city's most iconic cocktail.

On Monday, May 20, Bali Hai bar & restaurant on San Diego's Shelter Island served Mai Tai #3,000,000. A bar full of regulars packed the house the last few days in anticipation of the big moment, each ordering the beloved and extremely potent cocktail hoping to be the lucky patron. Then Sean walked in and ordered one as he sipped it down next to Ted and Amy, the winners of the two millionth Mai Tai, who were also at the bar trying to get the three millionth. 

"We rang in his order and BOOOOM, Sean was sipping on the 3 millionth Mai Tai," explained Bali Hai ownership. 

Sean celebrated the landmark with a new tiki mug and a $1,000 Bali Hai gift card. He will now and forever be a part of the history of San Diego's most famous cocktail. 
There's no denying the status of Bali Hai's World Famous Mai Tai in San Diego's drinking culture. Those who've indulged in more than one of these tropical concoctions have undoubtedly experienced the euphoric aftermath. 

Alongside the famed Mai Tai, patrons can also savor other original libations such as the Zombie, Goof Punch, and the Mr. Bali Hai - a milder rendition of its famed counterpart. Some cocktails even offer the option of accompanying souvenir tiki mugs, a signature of the Bali Hai experience.

Established in 1954 by Tom Ham and christened after a song from the beloved musical "South Pacific," Bali Hai has remained a family-owned treasure for seven decades, now under the stewardship of the third generation of the Baumann family. While the tiki haven underwent a design and culinary refresh in 2010, its classic drink menu remained a steadfast beacon of tradition. 

The Mai Tai recipe, birthed by the Trader Vic's restaurant chain in the late 1940s, has remained mostly unchanged since its inception at Bali Hai. A dedicated counter above the bar diligently tracks the staggering consumption tally - now surpassing the three million mark and moving its way to another milestone. The two millionth Mai Tai was served in 2008. 

Bali Hai proudly touts that their Mai Tai recipe excludes any fruit juice, delivering a dangerously delightful fusion of Coruba Jamaican Dark Rum, Ron Castillo Light Rum, a hint of orange liqueur, a touch of Trader Vic's orgeat syrup, and a splash of sweet & sour.

Bali Hai Restaurant is located at 2230 Shelter Island Drive in San Diego's Point Loma neighborhood. For more information, visit