2016 was the year of poke since poke shops were popping up left and right. WestCoast Poke is one of the newer ones (or maybe by the time I publish this post it won’t be) outside of the downtown core on 8th and Cambie.
It’s conveniently located near the Canada Line and they’ll probably get a lot of lunch time traffic from people working nearby.
The store has a super clean and minimalist look with hardly any furniture besides a long communal wood table and their logo adorning one wall.
My friend and I decided to share a bowl since I wasn’t too hungry. It was her first time trying poke so I was really hoping it would be good! WestCoast Poke offers 3 sizes: snack size $10 (2 scoops protein), regular $12.50 (3 scoops protein) or large $15 (5 scoops protein). For the base you can choose from: white rice, brown rice or a vegetable medley.
For their protein choices, they have: ahi tuna (+$3), albacore tuna, salmon, and tofu mushroom medley.
We went for the regular size with half white rice and half brown rice and 2 scoops salmon and 1 scoop albacore tuna.
I felt like their mix-ins and toppings were a bit limited here. Or they were going for the minimalist approach here as well. Less is more? They had: chili flakes, scallions, cilantro, sweet onion, pickled red onion, cucumber, cucumber kimchi, jalapeno, edamame, and thai chili.
For the toppings they had: avocado (+$1.50), house salsa (+$1), ginger, radish, pea shoots, crab salad, seaweed salad, pineapple, mango, sesame seeds, furikake, togarashi, and masago.
Sauces: ginger soy, wasabi aioli, maple soy, green coconut curry, spicy yuzu sriracha
Crunch: fried onion, fried garlic, taro sticks
We asked for all the mix-ins and all the toppings except for avocado and house salsa since there was an additional cost for those toppings. For the crab salad and seaweed salad, they also offered spicy options but since my friend isn’t into spicy foods we just had the regular version. Then we added the maple soy and the green coconut curry for our sauces and I believe we added all the crunch options as well. The taro sticks were interesting and I’ve never had anything like it before but I don’t think they tasted good on their own. A bit too crunchy and didn’t have much flavour. The guy putting together our bowl took great care into arranging everything and making it look nice so props to them for presentation.
The final product was tasty and refreshing after you mixed everything together. However, I still feel like the mix-in and topping options were limited or they just didn’t appeal to me personally. Also, maybe they should cut up the pea shoots more because they were awkward to eat. The mango was also unripe so winter may not be the best time to get it.
WestCoast Poke isn’t my favourite but there are really small differences between all the poke places so it really depends on your personal preference. I think I’m also getting sick of poke now after trying so many… The Poke Shop, Pokeritto, The Poke Guy, Poke Time. Which one is your favourite? Any predictions for 2017 food trends?