Guangzhou Restaurant Review: Poke Wood

By Ryan Gandolfo, September 30, 2019

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The Place

Image courtesy of Poke Wood

Coming off the success of their much beloved Jiangnanxi location, Poke Wood decided that it’s time to expand – opening their second poke bowl shop in Guangzhou’s bustling Zhujiang New Town area. We arrive at their new shop on Huaqiang Lu on a Friday around lunchtime. While the outside is very much a construction site at the time of our visit (a common sight in this city), the interior design boasts a clean, modern touch with subliminal messages and art neatly decorating the walls and floor.

The Food

If you’ve ever eaten a poke bowl – you know, the popular Hawaiian dish that blew up in the mid-2010s – you’d know why we’re excited about Poke Wood’s new shop in Guangzhou. Like most poke eateries, Poke Wood’s DIY poke bowl (RMB42) is broken down into four steps: You first select your base, followed by your desired protein, sauce and toppings. 

Image by Dessy for That’s

We opt for white sushi rice and lettuce for the base, salmon and shrimp for protein, honey mustard for a rich dressing and broccoli, corn, mushrooms and avocado (extra RMB8). We find Poke Wood’s main menu item to be a perfect lunchtime meal, and more than enough for two people to enjoy. The salmon and shrimp are both fresh and tender, while the avocado, rice and other veggies blend perfectly with the light honey mustard sauce. 

We cap the meal off with one of Poke Wood’s ice-cold beverages (September heatwaves are no joke). We settle on their honeydew soda (RMB22), which, despite its name, isn’t as sweet as expected.

Image by Ryan Gandolfo/That’s

Poke Wood’s menu also has two alternative dishes, both priced at RMB52: the cow tongue poke bowl and eel poke bowl. One thing worth noting – for those of you still putting off Chinese lessons: The restaurant’s current menu is only in Chinese. However, the food list includes photos and the staff are a helpful bunch.

The Vibe

Image by Ryan Gandolfo/That’s

Poke Wood has, you guessed it, wooden tables spread out around their small space, with additional seating by the main window. A rather large poke-themed mural greets diners on the left-hand wall – it clearly took some time and effort and is a nice addition to Canton’s newest poke shop.

Price: RMB50
Who’s going: hungry and healthy eaters, the poke posse
Good for: healthy eats, fresh seafood
Nearest metro:  Zhujiang New Town (Exit A2), 15 minutes’ walk

Open daily, 11.30am-11.30pm; see listing for Poke Wood’s Zhujiang New Town location.

[Cover image courtesy of Poke Wood]

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