Here’s something we somehow overlooked when reporting that Bango Bowls had opened last month on East Main Street in Bay Shore:
The place is also offering poke bowls.
To the uninitiated, poke bowls are flavor-packed raw fish salads made popular as appetizers in Hawaii.
Their popularity on mainland U.S. has exploded this past year.
In its 2017 annual delivery report, Grub Hub listed poke bowls as the No. 1 trending food choice in the country — with a 643% rise in popularity over 2016.
And Bango Bowls has been right in the thick of things, having already offered poke bowls at its Walt Whitman Mall location.
“They’ve turned out to be extremely popular and they’re really starting to rival acai sales,” said James Bonanno, a co-owner in the Bango Bowls chain, which also has locations in Massapequa and East Setauket.
There’s two more on the way in Pennsylvania and Scarsdale, N.Y.. And, coming this summer, Bango Bowls will be opening two locations on the ocean right here on the South Shore. (Keep an eye on sister site GreaterBabylon for details.)
Bango Bowls also offers acai bowls, pitaya bowls and cold brew coffee,
So, what makes the poke bowl so popular?
“Basically, it’s similar to the acai bowl, where it’s the healthy alternative to what people might be eating for lunch or dinner,” Bonnano said.
Here’s how ordering a poke bowl works at Bango Bowls: You get to choose a base of either rice, quinoa or kale. The bowl is topped with raw tuna or raw salmon. Then there’s an array of topping to choose from, such as edamame, seaweed salad or crab salad.
Dressings options include spicy mayo, cucumber wasabi, poblano avocado and blood orange chalet sauce. “And that’s the name a few,” Bonnano said.
“We couldn’t be more excited to be a part of Bay Shore,” he said of the chain’s latest venture. “It’s a growing community and we’re right in the heart of town. We’re already personals friends with our neighbor over at Verde and Local Burger Co. …
“And it’s even better on nice days with those accordion windows up.”