Shaka Bowl Poke
Why are there not Poke Shops everywhere in Auckland by now? It’s the perfect summer lunch (or early dinner too in the case of the recently opened Shaka Bowl) and combines the best of Asian flavours and New Zealand ingredients. Okay so it’s actually Hawaiian street food but it works very well here too, and we’re glad it’s finally made it our shores.
We visited Shaka Bowl at 6pm on a Monday night and were very pleased to find everything as fresh as it would have been when they opened at 11am (they close at 8pm). It’s not exactly a restaurant but there are a smattering of bar stools to perch on if you don’t feel like finding a spot outside in this lovely part of town.
We ordered a Salmon Poke Bowl and a Tuna Poke Bowl on salad (you can get it on rice too) and both were fresh and delicious – made to order, of course. The Salmon came with big chunks of bright orange glistening raw fish seasoned in sesame oil and soy on a salad of edamame, cucumber, mango, seaweed, onions and pomegranate seeds. The Tuna was the same but with tuna (funnily enough). We chose the regular sauce for one and the dynamite sauce on the other and both were equally delicious, with and without kick respectively. The regular sauce is sesame-based and the dynamite is a great combination of wasabi, sriracha and mayo. There is also a plain wasabi mayo option but we say go all in with the dynamite. Both complemented the fish perfectly without overwhelming it.
The staff were young and super friendly – a trio who became obsessed with this dish while in LA and brought it back here. We can see this is the start of a massive food trend, probably better for us than the ribs, sliders and mac cheese we’ve been loving a little too much recently!