Get hooked on fresh, affordable meals at the Poke Joint in Downtown Alhambra

By Adriana Maestas

Marc Hoang demonstrates his own poke making skills. He is focused on quality and customer service.

On Feb. 28, Marc Hoang introduced the Poke Joint to Alhambra’s cluster of restaurants along Main Street. Located at 6 W. Main, this is the M Restaurant Group’s first restaurant in Alhambra. This is the only poke bowl combined with a build-your-own ramen concept in the city.

“I want to make this restaurant a cool, hip, and welcoming location that the community can feel proud of,” said Mr. Hoang, owner and CEO of the M Restaurant Group. “I envision this as being a good place for high school students to come and hang out after school or for people who work or live nearby to stop for a quick and healthy meal.”

Formally educated as a pharmacist, with more than 18 years of professional experience serving San Gabriel Valley customers at the Payless Pharmacy, Mr. Hoang decided to follow his entrepreneurial spirit and his creative passions for food. He wanted to create restaurants that would appeal to foodies with fresh, healthy ingredients. Mr. Hoang is convinced that the fast food industry has added to our health problems, and he didn’t want to publicly contribute time and money to that hazardous condition.

The poke bowls resemble a sushi salad. Whether cooked or raw, the staff at Poke Joint can easily make a delicious concoction. Mr. Hoang pursued this idea because in his own family, some enjoy sushi and raw fish, while others prefer cooked seafood. So he added ramen to the mix, giving people the option of a warm dish.

The poke bowls are affordable and healthy. First you choose your base with the choice of white rice, mixed salad, half rice or half salad, or barley. Then you select your protein where you have a choice of raw fish (salmon, tuna, spicy tuna, or albacore) or cooked items (chicken, shrimp, octopus, or scallops). And finally, you select your toppings and sauce. There are more than a dozen toppings to add texture and flavor to the poke bowl, and the sauces provide the perfect seasoning. Poke bowls start at $6.99 and go up depending on how many items you want.

The ramen dishes are straightforward. You can select pork or chicken, add more meat or noodles, and select two toppings. The ramen bowl is $8.99.

When I visited Poke Joint, I was able to sample a poke bowl, and I was impressed with the freshness of the fish and how well the flavors combined for a satisfying and quick meal. The selection of teas and specialty drinks is impressive as well.

One of the most notable things about Mr. Hoang is his enthusiasm for starting new restaurants and his positive attitude.

The Poke Joint is open seven days per week. It opens at 11 a.m. every day. The restaurant closes at 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday. On Friday and Saturday, Poke Joint closes at 11 p.m.

For more information, phone 626-588-1788. You can also check out the Poke Joint’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/ThePokeJointAlhambra.


affordablehealthypoke bowlsdelicious concoctionfresh ingredients

Dec 2018


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