Hope you’re not tired of poke yet, as Ballard and Capitol Hill will soon be home to new dedicated restaurants and the southern tip of Denny Triangle will welcome an expansion of Wanderfish Poke from Capitol Hill.
Southern California-founded Poké Bar has been creeping north for the past year or so, spreading into Northern California and recently opening a Kent location, too. The first Seattle location will open in the former home of Gnocchi Bar at 1542 12th Ave as soon as this week; a sign on the building’s exterior notes that poke will be half off on May 12, 13, and 14 as grand opening specials.
For its part, Poké Bar follows the now-standard formula for fast-casual fish lovers: Order pre-constructed bowls or make your own with protein options that include ahi tuna, salmon, spicy tuna, shrimp, octopus, scallop, albacore, and tofu.
Meanwhile, in Ballard, Poke Square is expecting to open in late May — thanks to a reader for the tip. The restaurant is opening at 1701 NW Market Street in a former pot shop and claims to offer “the freshest ingredients in support of healthier choices for our community” with sourcing from local farmers.
Owners Daniel Pham and Loc Nguyen, who come from the mortgage and banking industries respectively, fell in love with poke in Maui and learned to make it from Nguyen’s Hawaiian relatives. Bowls will be made to order at this eatery, with white or brown rice or a green salad as the base; proteins like tuna, salmon, shrimp, or scallops; housemade sauces; and add-ins seaweed salad, edamame, and pickled ginger. For a slight departure from the norm, Poke Square will also offer the option to get your fish seared.
There are about 12 seats in the space, with hopes for outdoor seating eventually. The shop will be open Wednesday to Monday 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.
And at the corner of 6th and Stewart, in the Lloyd Building, it appears Capitol Hill’s Wanderfish Poke is preparing a second location down the hill from its original — thanks again to a reader for the intel. A sign reading “We’re up to something fishy” has the company’s fish logo on it, and Eater hears that expansion has been a goal for this poke place with a focus on sustainability.
And apparently Seattle still hasn’t hit peak poke.