Best Poke Bowls in Chicago

From fast to fine, the Hawaiian fish dish is sweeping the city
July 30, 2017
by Zagat Staff

The poke craze has officially reached a fever pitch in Chicago, with variations of the Hawaiian fish dish popping up on menus all over town. From designated poke shops to restaurant menus, here are the nine best poke bowls, and in some cases nachos and tacos, in Chicago right now.

Aloha Poke co.
Hawaiian · West Loop · $

These affordable Hawaiian outposts specialize in customizable, raw tuna- and salmon-based bowls (rice or salad) with Asian-influenced toppings and sauces served at funky, low-key counters.
Hawaiian · Lincoln Park · $

A delivery-only venture from the minds behind Naoki Sushi and other Lettuce Entertain You venues, this Hawaiian-inspired operation provides customizable bowls and maki with a choice of three types of fish or gingered beets, plus rice, tabouli or greens, and a wealth of creative toppings.
Cocktail Bar · River North · $$$

The Tanta team shakes up the River North cocktail scene with this hip lounge pairing a long list of elaborate, globally inspired mixed drinks with equally international small plates in a lofty setting with funky light fixtures, etched mirrors and a dramatic mural on distressed brick.
Oyster Bah
Seafood · Lincoln Park · $$$

Lettuce Entertain You is behind this New England–style seafood joint in Lincoln Park, serving up a large selection of raw oysters plus fish sandwiches and plates in a rustic, multilevel space with nautical decor and two bars, including a cellar, Low Tide Lounge, with its own food and cocktails menu.
High Tide Poke
Hawaiian · The Loop · $

This Hawaiian cafe in the Loop specializes in house and build-your-own raw fish bowls, wraps and ‘power bowls’ served over the counter. The extensive drink selection includes a variety of coffee and tea drinks, fresh-squeezed fruit and vegetable juices, smoothies and craft sodas.
Buzz Bait Taqueria
Taco · Old Town · $

Fish tacos headline the budget-friendly Mexican menu at this funky Old Town sibling to the Lou Malnati’s pizza chain, also offering landlubber options to fill tortillas, rice bowls and salads, plus margaritas, beer and wine. Beachy meets cosmopolitan inside the counter-serve space, featuring giant fishing lures and barn wood, and while there’s limited indoor seating, garage doors open to a seasonal patio.
American · Gold Coast · $$
Food 4.1 · Decor 3.9 · Service 4.1

It’s "classic Gold Coast" at this "upbeat" neighborhood "gem" offering "reliable" American comfort food such as "excellent burgers" and "standout" fried chicken, plus "good drinks" including an "impressive whiskey selection" ; the "bar is always lively at night" , but if it gets too "noisy inside" , there’s also "lovely outdoor dining" with "people-watching" in summer.
Yard House
American · Lincoln Park · $$

Known for a vast beer selection, these Glenview and Lincoln Park links in a national chain tap upwards of 100 brews in family-friendly tavern settings with sports showing on multiple TVs. Midpriced American pub food with global accents (including a gluten-free menu) pairs with the pours, and happy hours both early and late offer a variety of food and drink specials.