Houston has a new poke restaurant. Pokéworks, one of the fastest growing poké concepts in the country, with 11 stores nationwide and an aim to operate 70 locations by 2020 (we'll just be hiding under this safety blanket until then), opened at 213 Heights on October 2. This is the first Texas location.
Like much of its local poke competition, the shop offers customizable bowls and house signatures. Poke, if you're not aware of the fad that's taken over the Bayou City this year, is a Hawaiian dish comprised of raw fish marinated in soy or sesame oil and typically served over rice. In its Americanized form, sustainably-caught fish including tuna, salmon, and yellowtail are dressed in a number of marinades and sauces from spicy sriracha mayo to truffle oil, and are then served over rice, quinoa or greens, usually with an array of toppings ranging from nori to the very non-health minded Flamin Hot Cheeto dusting.
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Pokéworks' menu features eight signature combinations including a Spicy Ponzu Albacore with albacore tuna, green and sweet onion, mango, spicy furikake, sesame seeds and ponzu, and Sweet Chili Tofu with organic tofu, blanched kale, green and sweet onion, cucumber, edamame, sesame seeds and sweet chili gochujang sauce.
The build-your-own options go a touch deeper than other spots in town with proteins that also include scallops, sous vide chicken and organic tofu. You can also turn your creation into a sushi burrito.
The restaurant, which started in New York City in 2015, plans to add a fully-sustainable poke bowl featuring an underutilized fish this fall. The bowl will be created by guest chef Sheldon Simeon, owner of Maui’s Tin Roof and alum of Bravo TV’s "Top Chef," as part of the eatery's “Sustainable Series.”
Pokéworks, 213 Heights, pokeworks.com
Hours: Daily, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.