Claire Corlett

Fish Food, Fish Tanks, and More
The Best Cheap Poke Bowl in NYC || 5 Buck Lunch

The Best Cheap Poke Bowl in NYC || 5 Buck Lunch


– My name is Prez, and I work at Thrillist. Around these parts, I’m known as the 5 Dollar Lunch Guy. Every episode, I’m going to put you guys on to the very finest New York
grub for $5 or less. Who are these people who are still poking people on Facebook? Isn’t that feature, like,
30 years old now? Yo, hey, you just gonna
start poking people now? I mean… There’s a — thank you. Oh, poké. Ah OK, poké, poking. Listen, I appreciate the effort, but there’s no denying the
recent poké craze in New York. I do like sushi and I do like ceviche, so I have a feeling that I’m gonna hate to love me some poké. Let’s go. There is nothing I love
more than being exposed to the different ingredients, and flavors of different cultures. That’s why I am super
excited to be heading back to Crown Heights to check out Chisai. Because of their special relationship with local fish vendors,
they’re said to have some of the freshest fish
and best poké around. It’s five bucks somewhere, let’s do it. (upbeat drumming music) Bill Weir of “Wonder List” on CNN. – That’s right. – How you doing, man? – I’m well, good to see you, Prez. – Thanks. Have you ever had poké before? – No, I have not have. – I don’t like it. – You don’t like it? – I just don’t think it looks good. – I think it’s like
Chipotle mixed with sushi. – I have. I think that, you know, we live in this incredible melting pot. We’re on the forefront of street
food from around the world, and I’m always trying to get my Omega-3s. – Oh, yeah. – In the best way I can. So, you know, a little salmon in a bowl, I’m down with that. – What does it make you think of? – Pokémon. Small. – Did you have a favorite Pokémon? – Squirtle. – My man, my man. – While poké is popular,
there’s still some folks who need to catch up with rest of us. But for those of us who have, there seem to be many
different ways to poké. And many different ideas
about what it means, but we’ll get into that later. Here we are, we finally made it. Chisai Poké Bar, you can’t miss it with its beautiful, blue storefront, and its slick font, and of course the inside looks super-clean,
which is really comforting, when you’re dealing with raw fish. So let’s go inside. – Hey, what’s going on man? How you doing? – Pretty good, how are you? – Yeah, this is my first time to Chisai, so what do people need
to know about this place? – We’re doing a
Japanese-style take on poké, which is a pretty hot dish right now. See it all over the place. So basically if you really
wanted to boil it down, you can think of this
as deconstructed sushi. Really approachable, and a nice bowl, you can really get in there. Lot of vegetables, fresh
fish, lot of flavors. – So what would you say is the
most popular poké bowl here? – I would have to say
either the shiso salmon bowl or the spicy tuna, but the spicy tuna bowl definitely takes it by a nose. – I’m actually gonna go with that. So let me get the spicy
tuna bowl with rice. Let me get the cup size — the smaller one. – Cool. – The spicy tuna, that’ll be $6.53. – OK, perfect. $6.53, there you go. – Exact change? – Yes. – Wow, awesome. – All right guys, so here we have it: the spicy tuna poké bowl, and of course a little
water never hurt nobody. But guys, get in here,
take a look at this thing. Of course we have our spicy tuna, we have black and white sesame seeds, we have toasted almonds, of course we have our vinegar and rice,
we have the spicy mayo, and the avocado puree,
which I’m curious about to see how the spicy mayo
and the avocado puree kinda play off each other, and yeah. Of course you have the
scallions and the cucumbers, and all that good mess but
let’s get straight into it. (slurps) Wow, wow. The texture of this
tuna kinda reminds me of the texture of lox in a way. It’s very kind of velvety and silky, almost evaporates in your mouth. and the flavor is super-rich. Take a look at this thing —
this is just the cup version of the bowl, but this is kind of massive. I feel like I’ll be full just from this so this really is like
deconstructed sushi. You can see the Japanese
direction that they went in for the preparation,
which means that the rice is one of the most important
ingredients in the bowl, and this vinegar rice is otherworldly. You can see the care
and love that they put in each and very ingredient. This is beautiful food, man. If I had to describe this for somebody who’s never even saw poké before, I would describe it as if
sushi had a baby with ceviche, and they all lived
together in the same bowl. Now this cucumber and sesame
seed combination for me is giving me banh mi vibes,
like deconstructed banh mi. Whenever I get a good banh
mi, I’m always expecting cucumber and sesame seeds, and they’re hitting it for me, so. The star of the show for me,
is gotta be the spicy mayo. Feel like I could take
a bath in it, you know? Now what you might not know is that poké is all American, baby. Yeah, that’s right. Poké popped up in the ’70s
as a fisherman’s snack. Now while a lot of contemporary poké uses Japanese cuisine as
inspiration, for flavors, at the heart of it,
poké is actually a dish put together by a few bored fishermen while they were hungry,
bored and away from home. Crazy, right? All right guys, last bite. – I’m a mess. (laughs) – Yo Josiah, that was incredible. Thank you so much. – [Josiah] You’re welcome. Thank you. All right guys, let’s take this outside. Today’s mission was poké,
which brought us back to Crown Heights to try a dish
with its rise in popularity, especially in New York,
I’ve been curious to try. Now a place like Chisai,
I 100% co-sign, especially if you want
to jump on the poké train without breaking the bank. And not to mention, I mean, support the local fishing economy, I mean — that’s winning, right? Today’s mission was an absolute success, it’s not a big chain, it’s in
budget, and it’s damn good. Anyways guys, I’ll see you later. (snapshots) Hey what’s going on guys. Thank you so much for watching my show. If you have any comments
on where I should go next, kindly leave them in the comments below. Also follow us on
Instagram @5dollarlunchguy, other than that, follow (raises pitch), and I’ll see you guys next time. Peace.

49 comments on “The Best Cheap Poke Bowl in NYC || 5 Buck Lunch

  1. Never tried a Poke bowl, but have wanted to since I first heard of them…
    Oh another note anytime I see NYC on the TV or YouTube I get so sad, I've been once and never knew it was possible to fall in love with a City until I was crying when leaving.

  2. I was wondering where the hate came from, then i remembered his name : PREZ

    Not the good 4 years to be called PREZ he he he

  3. Why call this show $5 lunch if you are going to spend more than $5?
    Having the change roll over sorta defeats the whole concept of $5 lunch.

  4. Sorry but its definitely not all American but polynesian. I say polynesian because all islanders have a version of fresh caught fish with salt and local additions. Tourist that would visit always hated poke until we added it to a bowl of rice with spicy mayo or some avocado to make it palatable. Please share the facts correctly just because Hawaii is the 50th state, a dish created by our ancestors before being overtaken is not American but we did Americanize it just so it fits to everyones liking.

  5. I thought poke was Hawaiian… I've had spicy tuna poke bowl in Hawaii w more tuna than they put in there for 5 bucks.

  6. This isn't poke, this is sushi in a bowl. You can't do $5 lunch with a dish that has a food cost this high.

  7. For some reason the music seems really LOUD in the restaurant almost drowning Prez out. The constant repetition of the music was annoying as well. Please Turn. It. Down!
    Otherwise perfect as usual. I must try some of that poke!
    Jenn 💖 in Canada 🍁

  8. Don't think you'll see this Thrillist~but~I just read an article about something called CHOPPED CHEESE in Harlem. I'd love to see a video about that! If it's been done, apologies.
    Jenn 💖 in Canada 🍁

  9. Yo, tell me whose lunch break is long enough for you to travel from Chelsea, Manhattan to Crown Heights, Brooklyn? Google maps says it takes MINIMUM of 80 mintues (with optimal MTA conditions, which likely not be the case) from Thrillist studios to this shitty poke place and back. How is this practical or productive to your workplace??

  10. LOL I've never had a banh mi with sesame seeds. This guy needs to do research on his food missions more. Poke originates from Hawaii

  11. That's a slap of simple sushi in a bowl. I'd need it to be 3 times the size just to get something out of it. smh, american portions

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