Frequently Asked Questions

Do you have food?

Yes! We have a small menu of tasty fried appetizers and snacks, including like Guacamole, Crab Rangoon, chicken strips, and our famous sweet potato fries. Perfect for soaking up all that rum and fruit juice!

Where’s the Grey Goose?

We take pride in featuring locally made wines, beers, and spirits. That’s why we’re proud to offer Alameda’s own Hangar One vodka as our sole premium vodka. Fortunately, it’s outstanding vodka. We also offer Alameda’s own Rosenblum Cellars as our only wine, and feature select microbrews from around the Bay Area. In addition, look for other great Bay Area brands, such as 209, Sarticious, and Junipero gin, Charbay Rum, St. George spirits, Qi Liqueurs, and more.

Do you really squeeze your own juice?

You bet we do. We juice our own lemon, lime, orange, and grapefruit juice fresh in-house every day. There’s just no substitute for the flavor of fresh juice. You’ll never find sour mix, Rose’s, juice from a gun, or frozen concentrates at Forbidden Island. We also make our own syrups and grenadine with pure cane sugar- never corn syrup. Our cranberry juice is naturally sweetened pure cranberry juice (not cocktail) from Oakland’s own Voila Juice. And yes, even the maraschino cherries are naturally colored and flavored and contain no sulfites. We take this pretty seriously.

How do I book a private party?

Forbidden Island is an ideal location for a private party and one you and your guests will never forget!  The bar, lush patio, and parking lot are
available for booking outside of regular business hours, Monday-Saturday 2-5 pm, Sunday 12-3 pm.

You may bring in your own food/ caterer or we can facilitate that for you. Request our Private Party Catering Menu. Forbidden Island has
partnered up with a few local businesses to provide buffet style catering for your guests at very reasonable prices.  All you have to do is decide what
you would like to order and for a small food service fee, we place the order, pick it up, and set it up buffet style for you in the bar or on our

We also do “big batch” Mai Tais for parties, at a very reasonable price, which works out to less than $6 a drink.

You may bring your own music, and we can accommodate small bands inside the bar.  For more information or to check on the availability of a date please contact Michael by sending an email to:
We look forward to serving you!

Can I bring the kids?

No! We are strictly 21 and over only. We are licensed as a bar only, not a restaurant. We don’t have a kitchen, just a fryer. Please note that the parking and patio are also 21 and over only, and this includes private events. And yes, babies count as well, even if they (probably) won’t order a Mai Tai.

Can I at least bring my dog?

Dogs are welcome on our patio, but not inside the bar (except service dogs)- please bring them through the gate on the side. Please note that we currently operate a one-strike dog policy: the first dog to fight with another dog or attack a patron will cause dogs to be permanently banned from Forbidden Island. Please make sure your dog is sociable and “plays well with others”. Please note, dogs are NOT ALLOWED on the patio during big events. If you are unsure of whether an event will be in progress, please call first.

Why does the patio close so early?

It is a condition of our use-permit that the outdoor patio is to close no later than 9pm nightly as we are surrounded by residential property on all sides. In addition, when going to you car or leaving for the night, we kindly ask that you leave quietly out of courtesy to the rest of the neighborhood. Also: Please do not block any of our neighbors driveways when parking! Mahalo!

And why can’t I get any service out here?

One more thing about the patio: Because of the terms of our liquor license, we can’t have servers on the patio to take drink orders or deliver drinks or food. We really wish we could, but I’m afraid we can’t. Head back to bar for your orders, and we’ll drop the food and drinks on the end of the bar- remember to check back in before the chow gets chilly!

Why do I have to wait outside?

On weekends, we will usually start a line to get in. This is to comply with fire code regulations, but also to make sure that the bar stays comfortable and not too crowded inside. We want you to enjoy your experience, be able to get to the bar for a drink, and let our servers get through to the tables as well!

What’s with the dollars on the ceiling?

It started as a local tradition soon after we opened, and has been going strong ever since. In WWII, sailors shipping out to the Pacific would leave a dollar at their local bar to get a drink when they got back. Don’t forget to leave a message on them! Please note that they are not tips, and you should leave your tips on the bar for our hard working staff!!

Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge