After months of delay, Crazy Poke is now open. The fast-casual restaurant, located in Wynwood, joins similar concepts, including Ono, Baja Bao, PokéBao, and Poké 305, which opened this year.
Crazy Poke's founder, Argentine restaurateur Gonzalo Rubino, expected to open the eatery in early 2017, but because of construction and permitting delays, the restaurant soft-opened November 13.
Before moving to America, Rubino owned sushi bars in his native country. He received an offer to sell his restaurants back home and decided it was a sign to embark on a new challenge.
Rubino's Crazy Poke serves variety of signature bowls, sushi burritos, and a build-it-yourself option ($12.95 to 17.95). Instead of using frozen product, all of Crazy Poke's seafood, such as tuna, salmon, hamachi, octopus, and shrimp, is delivered fresh from fishermen across the country.
The restaurant's menu lists eight signature bowls, including spicy tuna, Atlantic salmon, and citrus shrimp, along with nonfish options such as chicken and tofu. There are nearly 40 toppings, mix-ins, and sauces, including orange, kale, plantain chips, passionfruit, creamy miso, and wasabi aioli. Some garnishes, such as avocado, mango, seaweed, and crab salad, can be added for an extra charge ($1 to $1.50).
The most expensive bowl on the menu is the C.R.A.Z.Y., which combines three types of fish — tuna, salmon, and hamachi — with avocado, sweet onion, seaweed salmon, and Nikkei sauce ($17.95).
"We hope that by selling a good-quality product, we will become the poke version of Coyo," he told New Times in November 2016 in regard to the wildly successful Coyo Taco in Wynwood. "We're trying to give customers the best we can. In this case, it's really fresh fish with a chef-driven menu."
If Crazy Poke's flagship does well, as Rubino envisions, he plans to open other locations across South Florida.
"You can expand a business much easier here," he told New Times. "I wanted the opportunity to create something big, and I couldn't do that in Argentina."
Crazy Poke. 312 NW 24th St., Miami; 786-401-7542; crazypokemiami.com. Daily 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.