For Dallas-area fans of poke, the trendy Hawaiian raw fish salad, the first week of February brings exciting news.
Never to be behind in a trend, Dallas is getting its own fast casual poke restaurant in Preston Center.
Dallas-based restaurateur Tony Lin, 35, decided to open Go Fish Poke after seeing the dish’s increasing popularity in California.
“The [location] is so perfect for poke because you have so many healthy people who want to have something healthy,” Lin said. “In the shopping center, you don’t have much like what we’re offering there, so I think it’ll be a great fit for the location.”
The quintessential Hawaiian dish is influenced by Asian traditions, Lin said. Poke (pronounced “po-kay”) is a Hawaiian word meaning to cut into pieces and has been eaten for centuries on the islands, but has only recently become popular in the rest of the country.
At Go Fish Poke, Lin wants to create a mom-and-pop feel, but more upscale.
Customers can customize their bowls, served over rice, with a variety of raw or nearly raw fish options, such as salmon, yellowtail, or shrimp.
Lin said it is important to use sushi rice rather than traditional white rice. “I want to do it a little bit different, but [the bowls have] still got those sushi qualities in there,” Lin said.
He’s not too concerned about local competition, since his restaurant is the only one of its kind in the area, according to Lin. Lin owns two other restaurants, both focused on Japanese cuisine — one in Alabama, and a Hibachi steakhouse and sushi joint in Rockwall.
His eventual goal is to expand within the Dallas area.
“This [poke restaurant] will be our first one, but hopefully in the future we are going to expand in the next three to five years,” Lin said. “We want to have at least 10 in DFW.”