We’re lucky to be from a city where really good Poke bowls are the norm. Poke has been my go-to lunch choice when taking a break from work. On our recent trip to Curacao we drove by a Poke place called Poke Food Station – they had clean branding from the outside – enough for us to be intrigued and stop by. The first time we got there they were closed for training and we were a bit bummed but the owner came out and greeted us and told us to come back and a drink would be on her. It’s a build your own bowl type establishment which means you can really fine tune what you’re getting and only get things you like eating! The decor was clean, fresh and hipster. Definitely a place I’d feel good about hanging out and having a bite.
Build a bowl to suit your tastes. It’s hard to make a recommendation at a place with this much customization because everyone has their own likes. We tried one vegetarian and one fish-containing bowl and will tell you all about it below!
The atmosphere has a fresh, clean, hipster feel with plenty of tables and the bowl station where staff create your bowls for you. There’s also a snazzy couch area at the back of the restaurant if you’re hanging with a group of friends. You could easily eat in or just take your bowl to go! As the restaurant was just opening up when we went it wasn’t crowded though lines started to form as we were leaving (on a Saturday afternoon).
We got a free drink from the owner as a come try our place out incentive as they were closed when we first stopped by – that was a kind gesture and the outside heat definitely made me crave a nice cold drink. The drinks are pretty standard and I got a diet coke which I got with a cup of ice – it was refreshing (I think the cola on Curacao tastes way better than in Canada, maybe it’s the heat but it has an extra sharp zing).
Poke bowl with salmon and tuna
I got the standard size salmon bowl on sushi rice and added a scoop of tuna to it. I normally get salad greens as my base but wanted to try the recommendation and get the full experience. It was great to be able to customize options on their order sheet. I had wakame, masago and alfalfa sprouts as my toppings, chose the coconut sauce, and had onions and sesame seeds as my toppers.
The coconut sauce flavour was really great and mixed well with my toppings. I got what I considered to be the right amount of protein and toppings – the bowl didn’t seem too rice heavy or topping light so there was a great mix and it wasn’t over sauced which was great too. The fish was fresh and diced to a nice size. Overall I loved the flavours, protein and toppings. My only recommendation would be to have warm sushi rice (mine was cold) as a base as I’m used to a warm poke rice base with cold toppings.
We also got a standard size vegetarian bowl with tofu. The tofu was marinated in teriyaki sauce and we had mango, wakame and avocado as the toppings. Again we chose the coconut sauce (it’s vegetarian) and topped it off with sesame seeds. The flavour was great for the vegetarian bowl and the ratios of protein, toppings, sauce and rice were still great. I also just wanted to mention that avocados in the Caribbean are amazing…so creamy.
Our waitress was super helpful and looked up ingredients for us for the sauces and answered our questions for us. The service is fast but attentive and the bowls come out high quality with the right proportions. We were happy to eat there and would drop by again when we’re on the island!
Curacao could definitely use a growing trendy and hipster restaurant scene which I’m used to when I travel. The Poke Station definitely fits into that bucket – the food is fresh and delicious, the atmosphere is clean and hipster, and the service is great.