McDonald’s is closed for renovations.
But a much more flavorful and interesting fast food place just opened in Compo Acres Shopping Center.
Pokéworks is the newest addition to Westport’s fast-casual culinary scene. It’s also the first to serve Hawaiian-inspired cuisine here.
Poké today is based on Hawaii’s variety of cultures, though it dates back to Polynesian times. It features pungent sauces, crunchy toppings, and bases like rice, lettuce and kale noodles. The key to most poké is fresh, raw fish.
In Hawaii the dish is a mainstay of social gatherings, as a side or appetizer. Instead of deli counters, Hawaiian grocery stores have poké counters.
Pokéworks — which sits between Compo Farm Flowers and Jersey Mike’s, not far from Trader Joe’s (where the staff, coincidentally, wears Hawaiian shirts) — offers an array of choose-your-own proteins (ahi and albacore tuna, salmon, shrimp, scallops, organic tofu and chicken), plus mix-ins including edamame, seaweed, shiso and mangoes; flavors like umami shoyu, wasabi aioli and spicy ginger; toppings (furikake, surimi salad, thai chicken) and “crunch” like roasted macadamia nuts.
Pokéworks is a rapidly expanding national chain. They’re in 23 states — but this is only the second location in Connecticut (the first was in Wilton).
The company website says that all seafood is sustainably and responsibly sourced.
I tried Pokéworks today. Ordering was fun. The food was certainly flavorful. It blows McDonald’s out of the water.
But it’s not 100% Hawaiian. No shave ice, unfortunately.