Hang loose, dude! Everyone wants to be a beachbum. Crashing waves, sand between the toes, a gentle ocean breeze floating over the palm trees. A day in the tropics is a little pinch of heaven. The Hawaiian Islands possess a special beauty which captivates the heart and enriches the soul. Historically, Hawaiian was the last state to join the United States of America. The only state made up entirely of Islands, on August 21st, 1959, Hawaii officially became the fiftieth state. Because of its long history as a nation itself, Hawaii carries a special culture unlike any other state. One of the unique aspects it contributes is exhotic foods.
The Poke Bowl (pronounced “poh-kay”) is an exclusively Hawaiian cuisine, although other Asian cultures have a similar variation. Hence the slight Asian influence in the modern style Poke Bowl. Back in the day, the Poke had its humble beginnings with the Hawaiian fishermen. With the long days out working on the water, the hungry fishers would season little cut-off from their catch to have as a snack. This little snack grew into a national food! The icon of the Poke Bowl would be the raw fish, skinned and deboned and usually cut into little cubes. Frequently made with ahi tuna or Salmon, the Poke Bowl can also feature octopus or shrimp. Adding a plethora of crisp vegetables, soft rice, and seasonings and sauces to the Poke Bowl, it’s all tossed together for a delicious meal. A more modern take on the Poke Bowl can feature each ingredient placed together in its own section of the bowl.
In 2012, the Poke Bowl started showing up in California. With it’s beautiful beaches and laidback surfers, it only makes sense that Hawaiian cuisine would find its place in the Golden State. In fact, for the past 10 years, San Diego hosts an annual “I Love Poke” festival which celebrates Hawaiian Poke made by the finest chefs and restaurants in the area. It also features a Poke competition and tasting, embracing the long time tradition of food and family. Becoming more popular in recent years, the Hawaiian restaurants serving the Poke Bowl have doubled from 342 to 700 restaurants by 2016. People are hungry for more!
And this is where Uncle Sharkii Poke Bar’s story begins. Raymond was a native Hawaiian, who loved his heritage. Fenny hailed from China, world’s apart from Raymond. But nothing stops true love and the two were happily married. Very soon their little family grew with the addition of Melody, a precious baby girl. Starting out as budding entrepreneurs, Raymond and Fenny owned a small ice cream shop. It was a sweet life! Then one day, Fenny had a spark of creativity. She added the Poke Bowl as a special addition to the menu, tying it all back to Raymond’s Hawaiian roots. The Poke Bowl was an instant success. Shortly after, the family took a vacation to China to see Fenny’s relatives. It was there that Melody met her Uncle who gave her a special present of a cute stuffed shark. And from that shark was born Uncle Sharkii Poke Bar, a franchise intent and passionate about making the perfect Poke Bowl.
Uncle Sharkii Poke Bar takes a heartfelt approach to the Poke Bowl. Built off of historical legacy, family unity, and delicious food, Uncle Sharkii Poke Bar stays true to the original Poke Bowl. Many restaurants put a modern twist on the Hawaiian cuisine, which loses some of the uniqueness of the traditional recipe. But believing that simplicity is the key ingredient of the Poke Bowl, Raymond and Fenny’s restaurant stays true to the Hawaiian style. They are committed to serving only the best ingredients and everything is fresh, organic, and of course, delicious. Fenny, always coming up with creative ideas, added delicious Asian boba teas to the menu to slake the thirst of hungry customers. The unique blend of Asian boba teas combined with hearty Hawaiian Poke Bowls reflected the perfect unity between Fenny and Raymond and their own individual cultures. The franchise has become one of the leading restaurants to serve exclusively traditional Poke Bowls.
With Americans craving healthy fast food alternatives, it’s no surprise that Uncle Sharkii Poke Bar plans to open new locations up the coastline of Californian and several in Arizona. The Poke Bowl’s popularity is rising. A recent study showed that since 2018, google searches ran on the Poke Bowl had increased by 335%. With social media being a huge source of popular trends, food photos and hashtags have contributed to the rise of interest. But the Poke Bowl is more than just a trendy sensation, it’s a lifestyle that follows the time honored tradition of food, family, simplicity, health, and vitality. These fundamentals are the building blocks of Uncle Sharkii Poke Bar. Understanding the need for healthy fast food, they’ve created a franchise that contributes to society in a beautiful way. The Poke Bowl might seem simple, but really, it’s simply wonderful!