It’s when I feel a little uncomfortable about being in a restaurant, for one of many reasons, that it seems to be the times I’ve discovered an unpolished gem of a meal. I felt uncomfortable going to a raw fish place in a business complex filled with offices. Plumbers, locksmiths, piano lessons, and Poke’? I felt uncomfortable entering from the back door of restaurant (there is a front door, I just missed it). I felt uncomfortable ordering for the first time from a “Subway” like line filled with the ingredients for a poke’ bowl. I felt uncomfortable that many of the people were there alone, with no one joining them. Once I had the first bite of poke’ at Wow Poki in San Juan Capistrano, I felt very damn comfortable.
Wow Poki lived up to it’s name. I understood why people came alone. They either couldn’t wait to have it again and it didn’t matter if they had someone to go with or they didn’t want to share this spot with others and find themselves waiting in a long line. The food was very fresh and flavorful. Does the atmosphere lack something, or maybe a lot of things? Sure. But when you end up staring at the amazing food you’re eating, the atmosphere becomes far less important. Look beyond the wrinkles, and see the beautiful ingredients you select. Accept that it’s not in a hip and trendy place like 4th Street Market or Anaheim Packing House, and focus on the food. And certainly feel comfortable that you’re in a hole-in-the-wall that works hard to serve an outstanding bowl of poke’ at a reasonable price.