Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Home Eat & Drink Laid Back Poke Shack brings Hawaii to Salt Lake

Laid Back Poke Shack brings Hawaii to Salt Lake

The notion that we cannot get fresh seafood in Salt Lake City is antiquated.

“If this were 40, 50 years ago, sure. But the way logistics work and how we can get things shipped around, I don’t think it’s strange to have fresh fish in a desert,” says Jimmy Zouras, who along with his wife Deanna, owns and operates Laid Back Poke Shack in Holladay. “We get our fish directly from the Honolulu fish auction and it comes fresh three times a week.”

Zouras’ family opened Gourmandise the Bakery in the early 90s. But for his latest business venture, Zouras switched his focus from French pastries to fresh fish in the form of the Hawaiian delicacy, poke (pronounced poh-keh), and opened up Laid Back Poke Shack in February.

In the Hawaiian language, poke is a verb that means to cut or to slice. A basic poke consists of cubed, raw ahi (yellow fin tuna) marinated in soy sauce, sesame oil, seaweed and chili pepper.

But don’t simply call it sushi.

“We’ve had people come in who try to compare it to sushi. Some people come in expecting a sushi-style experience but that’s not it,” Zouras says. “This is poke and poke is something different.”

Poke has appeared on menus of several sushi restaurants in Salt Lake City as an appetizer in recent years. In Hawaii, however, poke is so pervasive that many grocery stores (even chains like Costco) keep several different flavors of it in stock.

With Laid Back Poke Shack, the Zouras’ tried to recreate something they experienced and loved in The Aloha State. Their shop offers a variety of poke, including ahi, salmon and tako (or octopus).

“We put this together so we could come get poke. It started off very selfishly,” Zouras quips.

Their affinity for poke is spreading and Zouras says the reception for Laid Back Poke Shack has been great so far. But some people are still skeptical of seafood in Salt Lake.

“We’ve come across a few challenges as far as perceptions but the only thing we can do is to let them try it,” Zouras says.

Laid Back Poke Shack is in Holladay, at 6213 S Highland Dr. They are open from 11-8 Tuesday-Saturday and closed Sunday and Monday.

Happy Friday! We all know the best way to celebrate the end of the week is with a cocktail 😉! ⁠

🍸 And our next highlighted cocktail is the perfect way to start your weekend. @alibislc's 'Far From The Tree' by Clif Reagle:⁠

1.5 oz. @shdistillery Bourbon⁠
1.5 oz. Utah Honey and Akane Apple Shrub⁠
.25+ oz. @waterpocketdistillery Snow Angel .25 oz. lemon juice⁠
Barspoon of simple syrup⁠
2 dashes Regans Orange Bitters⁠
Combine in shaker over ice, shake and strain into a footed glass. Serve with dried apple garnish.⁠

“My goal for this drink was to make it with as many local ingredients as possible,” says Reagle, “and seeing as the farm scene is pretty quiet in November I decided to go with a classic method of fruit preservation: the shrub.⁠

VOTE VOTE VOTE AWAY! Grab our magazine, grab a cocktail (or make it yourself) and get voting. Cheers!🥂⁠

Link in bio to vote and learn more about Clif Reagle!

Yes. Thanksgiving is going to be different this year. So instead of stressing out to prepare a meal, help support local restaurants who need our love this Thanksgiving. 🦃⁠

Restaurants are doing what they can to make this Thanksgiving seamless for us. With offerings of curbside pick up, meal kits, and even delivery, ordering out this Thanksgiving seems like a no-brainer.⁠

Oh and did we mention no family-sized mess to clean up afterward? That’s a win-win in our book. 😉 Check the link in bio for full list of restaurants. 🍽️

Don't forget to vote in our 2020 Cocktail Contest!! 🍸🍹🥂⁠

Our next highlighted coktail is @thecopperonion's “Not Today Satan” by Frank Mealy:⁠

1.5 oz. @shdistillery Bourbon⁠
1.5 oz. pear shrub (Champagne Vinegar/Earl Grey simple 2:1)⁠
.75 oz. lemon juice⁠
Preheat glass with hot water. Mix ingredients, pour into the hot glass, top with hot water and garnish with cinnamon stick, star anise and dried pear.⁠

Mealy is a full-time bartender for the Copper Group. “Inspiration for this drink came from the expectation that we’re going to be running our outdoor patio season longer because of Covid.” People are more comfortable sitting outside, Mealy says, “So I wanted to make a hot drink for the colder months.”⁠

VOTE VOTE VOTE AWAY! Grab our magazine, grab a cocktail (or make it yourself) and get voting. Cheers!🥂⁠

Link in bio to vote and learn more about Frank Mealy!

Our 2020 Cocktail Contest is live!! 🍸🍹🥂

We’ll be highlighting our cocktail contest contestants throughout the next few weeks. Starting with @takashi_slc’s “Red Dirt Garden” by Crystal Daniels:

- 1.5 oz. Amaro Bilaro
- .5 oz. @shdistillery Barrel-strength Rye
- .75 oz. Lemon juice
- 1 oz. Red rice orgeat made with @redbuttegarden botanicals
- Pinch of Jacobsen Salt from @caputosmarket

Daniels garnished her cocktail with banana leaves and an edible begonia- if you can’t get the begonia, another colorful edible bloom will do. 🌺

VOTE VOTE VOTE AWAY! Grab our magazine, grab a cocktail (or make it yourself) and get voting. Cheers!🥂

Link in bio to vote!

Did you know that the first woman to cast a ballot in the United States voted right here in Salt Lake City?

In 1870, on her way to work as a schoolteacher, Seraph Young stopped by SLC’s old City Hall—right across from the Capitol—and made history as the first woman to vote under a women's equal suffrage law.

Like many of us, Young voted early in that election simply because she had to get to work on time. Her story reminds us of the power ordinary people have to make history. Now, get out and vote!

Photo: Ron Fox

Our November-December issue is on stands now!!⁠

And our annual cocktail contest is open for voting! Take all precautions, support our hardworking hospitality community and remember to smile. 🍹🍸🧉⁠

Pick up a magazine, grab a cocktail and vote! Happy November, everyone! ⁠

Check the link in bio to vote.

Trick or treat? COVID cases are getting scary.

111K confirmed cases and 601 deaths in Utah.

Link in bio for a little op-ed on face masks. 😷

Here in Utah, we live on the traditional and ancestral homelands of the Shoshone, Paiute, Goshute and Ute Tribes. Today we celebrate the people who first called this land home. We remember the struggles and tragedies they endured and recognize the fight for justice and autonomy that Indigenous Peoples still face. ⁠

Go to the link in bio to give to Diné Bikéyah and support Bears Ears. 🏜️

Last night’s vigil for Breonna Taylor. ...