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With such amazing ocean access and local fish options, it’s no surprise that there are plenty of places around San Diego with amazing poke. For those who are unfamiliar with the term, poke is a Hawaiian appetizer, salad or main dish. It has distinct Japanese and Asian influences, and it has become increasingly popular here on the mainland.

Poke is a raw fish dish that typically includes yellowfin tuna or octopus. Some eateries will offer unique spins on poke featuring different seasonings or fish. Common seasonings used in the dish include soy sauce or tamari, green onions, sesame oil, sesame seeds, dried seaweed, chili peppers, fish eggs, wasabi and even nuts.

Now THATS a spread?

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Whether served as a side or a main entree, poke is a flavorful, high-protein dish sure to be a favorite among those who enjoy foods like sushi, sashimi or ceviche.  Of course, the culinary skills of the cook, the freshness of the fish and many other factors can impact how enjoyable a serving of poke may be. That’s why it’s so important for would-be diners to make sure they’re getting their poke from a reputable and clean source.

We’ve taken all the guessing out of the process. If you’re in Kearny Mesa for work or even Happy Hour and craving some raw fish, there are a number of great places to order up poke. We’ve tracked down four of the best, so that you can get your protein fix without any concern about the quality of the establishment serving it up.

Zion Market’s Hidden Secret

Poke U
Location: 7655 Clairemont Mesa Blvd., Suite 403
Hours: Seven days a week from 10:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Price: $

If you’re looking for an affordable and well-regarded poke eatery in Kearny Mesa, look no farther than Poke.Located inside the Zion Market’s food court, Poke U makes up fresh poke bowls to order. You will definitely know you like all of the flavors in your bowl, since you’ll hand pick the ingredients.

Poke spot right across from work. I dig, not bad. #PokeU

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You start by selecting the size of your bowl. From there, you pick your base (white or brown rice, salad greens or a mixture). From there, you pick your protein from options like salmon, tuna, shrimp, scallops or tofu. Then you can add other toppings, such as a masago, green onions, pineapple, jalapenos, onions, seaweed salad and edamame. You can also add artificial crab or avocado for $1 more. Finally, you pick your sauce. Now, enjoy your poke bowl!

For first time poke eaters or those who just don’t want to spend a lot of money, Poke U is a great choice. They do accept credit cards, but that means you need to make at least a $10 purchase. A larger size bowl or a drink will be enough to bring your total up high enough. They also serve ramen if you’re in the mood for noodles instead.

Coming to a #Zion #Market near U #PokeU ??? #Poke

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Design Your Own Poke Bowl

Poki One N Half
Location: 8055 Armour St. Suite C
Hours: Sunday-Thursday: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday: 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Price: $

At Poki One N Half, you can build your own poke bowl from four different bases, seven kinds of seafood and more than ten toppings. If traditional poke bowls with tuna or octopus sound great to you, Poke One N Half should be your destination. They also offer some more creative and unique protein options.

So #colorful and #healthy #foodninja #diningoutsd #poke #pokeonenhalf

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You can get a small, regular or large bowl. You can also order a poki burrito, which has the same amount raw fish as a medium bowl wrapped up in a tortilla. The options for base are white or brown rice, salad or chips. You can order half & half, too. The burrito can only be made with white rice.

Protein options include salmon, yellowtail, tuna, shrimp, albacore, octopus, spicy tuna and scallops. There’s also tuna for vegetarians. You can add other toppings, such as avocado, white onion, cucumber, ginger, wasabi, seaweed flakes, edamame, cilantro, crunchy garlic or even masago. Finally, you get to pick your sauce, ranging from the mild poki sauce to hot, spicy and fire poki sauce. There are also gluten-free sauces available for an extra $0.49.

You can order up a hot tea or miso soup on the side. For dessert, they’ve got macaroon ice cream and Viva Pops.

Poke + Burrito = Pokirrito

Location: 4646 Convoy Street, Suite 101-A
Hours: Sunday-Thursday: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday: 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Price: $$

Pokirrito prides itself, among other things, on creating and offering the Golden Ratio Poke Sauce. Customers can take food to go or enjoy the modern and casual indoor seating. There’s a second location in Little Italy, for those seeking poke burritos outside of Kearny Mesa.

As the name implies, a Pokirrito is basically a sushi burrito. In addition to poke burritos, this place serves up poke bowls and craft iced teas. Flavors for their craft ice tea change, but common offerings including tropical green tea, mango pineapple and raspberry lime.

We like big pokirritos and we cannot lie.

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Their standard burritos include wild Pacific ocean nori and non-GMO rice. Pokirrito will let you remove items from a burrito but not add any. There are burritos with salmon, crab meat, ahi tuna, shrimp and teriyaki beef, or marinated and fried chicken karaage.

If you want to get a little more fusion with your dish, you can add Flamin’ Hot Cheetos Crumbs to your dish or have your burrito wrapped up in a soy tortilla instead of a flour one. If a burrito isn’t exciting you, you can order up a bowl. Offerings are similar to other places, but they have ground tuna as well.

Did someone say #cheetorito? ??

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Sushi With a Side of Poke

Kula Revolving Sushi Bar
Location: 4609 Convoy Street, Suite F
Hours: Sunday-Thursday: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday: 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Price: $$

If you’re looking for a place that’s as unique in design as it is in menu offerings, look no farther than Kula Revolving Sushi Bar. You can literally pick up food off of a rotating conveyor belt or special-order anything you see on their menu. The service is much faster than traditional sushi eateries, and the price and quality combination are hard to beat. This place is almost always packed.

As their name implies, Kula Revolving Sushi Bar has a lot of sushi offerings. Scallops, snow crab, salmon, tuna, squid, toro octopus and mackerel are all featured for nigiri sushi. There are hand rolls and standard rolls or you can enjoy noodles, such as ramen and udon.

They offer a Japanese poke bowl for a very reasonable price, since it’s a side dish. For those who know they like sushi but want to ease into poke, a trip here could be the best option. Be sure to save room for dessert. You can order up sesame balls, Hokkaido milk creamy tarts, mochi ice cream or even banana tempura.