In the past year, we've seen a rapid proliferation of poke around DFW, particularly in the fast-casual realm. Now, TJ's Seafood owner Jon Alexis is jumping on the bandwagon with "Shark Tank-featured venture capitalists" Ben and Eric Kusin.
Opening in fall 2017 at 3888 Oak Lawn Ave. in Turtle Creek Village, Malibu Poke will serve what Alexis calls "fishmonger's poke," according to a press release. "Our emphasis is on freshness, nutrition and sustainability," Alexis said in the release. "And we will utilize cutting-edge self-ordering tech to minimize lines and deliver the freshest bowls."
Malibu Poke will have the poke standards – ahi tuna, Atlantic salmon – but will "utilize TJ’s network of premier fish vendors to feature unique sashimi-quality seafood selections such as king salmon, toro and hamachi," according to the release.
So where does tech fit in? "Malibu Poke will feature a unique tech-based ordering system minimizing waits, educating guests on unique ingredients and making customized bowls easy," the release says. Computer-based ordering is neither new nor unique in the restaurant industry, but there is room for exploration, especially among fast-casual eateries looking to significantly decrease labor costs.
Keeping on-trend with what Dallas diners are into now, the fast-casual spot will have vegan and gluten-free options and will serve "Texas and California beers, wine on tap, sake, kombucha, teas and fresh juices," according to the release.
The space itself is described as "California chic," also something found in just about every new Dallas restaurant right now, and will be designed Hatsumi Kuzuu (FT33, Tei An, Sprezza).
It's hard to say whether Malibu Poke really will stand out in the crowded poke/"California chic" Dallas dining landscape, but Alexis' connections in seafood could give this forthcoming spot an edge.
Malibu Poke, 3888 Oak Lawn Ave., projected to open fall 2017
Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.