Since their first appearance on the dining scene in 2016, the poke bowl trend has continued to grow rapidly in Melbourne, with what seems like a new poke eatery opening up every second week.
And there are absolutely no complaints from me! I'm one of the many enablers of this food trend as I can't seem to stop ordering them whenever I encounter them, be it at a poke eatery or on the menu at cafes. Fresh, delicious and healthy - what's not to love? Those in Richmond are now able to get their poke fix with the opening of Mahalo Poke, by the folks behind Botherambo.
The launch of the recently opened eatery kicked off with a selection of drinks that took our taste buds on a trip to either Hawaii or the Orient. Or both! No stranger to the tasty cocktail concoctions of Botherambo, the drinks we were treated to on the evening of the launch fell into the same category of deliciousness.
I quite enjoy my seafood poke bowls, and opted for the Mahalo Tuna bowl (although, I was also eyeing the Spicy Salmon). The bowl featured silky pieces of fresh tuna accompanied by pickled chilli, heirloom tomatoes, ka'ukama (cucumber), carrot, purple cabbage, pineapples and creamy Hawaiian Gribiche sauce. Alongside the tuna, the standouts were the tangy sweetness of the pineapples and the flavoursome Gribiche sauce. The crispy taro pieces were also a great addition, adding some crunch that oomph'ed up the textural component, but encounters with it were far and few between. The serving size was quite generous and I ended up with a lot more brown rice than I could finish. Other base options include kale, jasmine rice or soba noodles. If you're not the biggest fan of raw seafood (and possibly the overall poke bowl trend thus far), Mahalo Poke has fried chicken and crispy soft shell crab options.
On another note, the eatery also serves up a Hawaiian inspired breakfast menu that has certainly piqued the curiosity of my taste buds, and runs until 11 am on weekdays and all day on weekends. Needless to say, a breakfast poke bowl also makes an appearance on this menu :)
Machicko Fried Chicken (with pickle chilli, pineapple, cucumber, edamame, corn, wasabi mayo and tonkatsu bbq sauce) / Mahalo Tuna bowls.
77 Swan St,
Richmond, Victoria, 3121.
(03) 9428 7342
Disclosure: I dined as a guest of Mahalo Poke. All opinions expressed in this post are based entirely on my experience and observations made during the time of my visit.