“You know I had to have some sort of poke on the menu. 🙂 ” That’s the Instagram message I received from chef Dakota Weiss after Instagramming her Ahi Tuna Poke Nicoise Salad from Estrella. Weiss and her her partners now run this stylish spot on the Sunset Strip along with progressive Sweetfin Poke in Santa Monica. Clearly, this arrangement warranted a mash-up.
The Sunset Strip has seen a revival in recent years, and Estrella is the latest player to bolster the boulevard’s culinary landscape. Ahi Tuna Poke Nicoise Salad ($18) had the biggest appeal of any dish during my lunch on the restaurant’a bamboo-framed patio. Rosy ahi tuna poke cubes joined blood orange ponzu (citrus segments and all), Chinese five-spiced green beans, intensely savory black olives, seasoned eggs, romaine, and multi-colored cherry tomatoes. My server said to crumble accompanying taro chips over the salad for extra crunch. This was a great poke-salad hybrid with vivid color and big bursts of flavor.