When it comes to health food fads we sometimes struggle to keep up. The latest craze (we think) is for poke – a Hawaiian rice bowl dish topped with raw fish. The latest exponent of it in Dubai is Cali Poke, a small, unlicensed outlet overlooking Dubai Water Canal. The venue is small and simple, with only a few tables. The food is served assembly line-style.
Choose your base (white or brown rice, tortilla chips, salad or half and half of any of those), add some veg, pick which seafood you want (salmon, tuna, shrimp and, for some reason, cooked chicken) and decide on toppings (seeds, ginger, onion and more). There’s also the chance to stick your fillings inside tacos.
We end up getting a bowl of brown rice with spicy tuna and raw salmon with pretty much every topping and dressing you can think of. Perhaps surprisingly, it turns out well. The fish is maybe a little too cold, but once it’s all mixed it’s a tasty, filling bowl. The quality of the seafood is good, too. Cali Poke is also available for delivery in the area and while eating in isn’t unpleasant, it’s not a destination you’d go out of your way for. The food, on the other, hand, we heartily recommend. Fad or not.
The bottom line Top poke, not-so-top setting.