SELMA – Selma already has a number of Mexican restaurants, an Indian restaurant and some Chinese restaurants that reflect California’s diverse culture. Now, it can add a Japanese eatery to its list of dining-out options to the menu.
Morgan Doizaki’s family owns Fresno’s Central Fish Company and serves as the general manager. He moved to Fresno from Los Angeles in 2003. He and friend Charles Chang and Chang’s fiancée, Amy Haworth, have teamed up to open Poke Cubed3 on Whitson Street.
The Japanese are known for their longevity that results from their healthful eating habits and Doizaki said their goal is to bring these same healthy options to Selmans.
Haworth said for those who are unfamiliar with poke, it’s a deconstructed sushi roll in a bowl.
“Everything’s fresh and made to order so if there’s anything customers don’t like on it, or they want to add proteins, you can definitely do that,” she said.
On the menu are the crunchy California, original or spicy tuna, original or spicy salmon and spicy mayo tuna bowls, a ceviche bowl and vegan bowl. More options will be added to the menu soon. You can also purchase novelty items such as the sushi magnets, salad-on-the go containers or items to help you make your own sushi at home.
“We’re really flexible with our bowls,” Haworth said. “They’re preset (on the menu) just to cut down on the wait time. We have grab-and-go sushi in the fridge, Japanese drinks, candies and snacks. We cater to the average working person that normally only has a 30-minute lunch and needs something quick and easy. It’s a healthy option, too. It’s not fast food.”
Haworth realizes not everyone is a fan of raw fish. Those customers opt for bowls that feature cooked shrimp, imitation crab meat or tofu.
“Even my parents love the poke bowls because it’s a little bit different. Since the meat is pre-marinated, the bowls have all these flavors. With all the toppings, each bite is very different and unique. It makes even my parents enjoy eating the raw fish.”
Poke Cubed3 is already open for business but look for a ribbon-cutting to officially open the shop later in mid-January.
We asked them a few questions about the business and here are their replies:
Name of business: Poke Cubed3 – Fresh cubed sushi
Location: 2735 Whitson St., Selma
Phone number: 898-3097
Website or Facebook: Their main website is still under construction, but their Facebook page is at: https://www.facebook.com/pokecubed3/
Hours of operation: 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. daily
Owner/operator name: Morgan Doizaki with Central Fish Company co-workers Charles Chang and fiancée Amy Haworth on staff.
What’s your professional background? Doizaki’s family owns Central Fish Company and supplies Fresno-area Japanese restaurants with their seafood needs.
Type of business: Japanese sushi eatery with dine-in or take-out options.
What do you specialize in? Fresh sushi bowls
Why did you decide to open a shop in town?: “We were thinking about locations in Fresno, but due to the fact that Central Fish delivers in many sushi bars in the Fresno area, we wanted to stay out of their territory. We don’t have many customers in Selma so we wanted to expand in the South Fresno County market,” Doizaki said.
“I say it was my idea, too, since I live in Kingsburg so I tried to convince them to bring sushi near where I live,” Haworth said. “What sets us apart from other poke spots is that we pre-marinate our fish like they do in Hawaii. We’re taking this Japanese-Hawaiian fusion and staying true to how they do it.”
Any statement you’d like to make to your customers?: Chang was busy prepping in the kitchen but added a quick invite to new customers. “We’ll see you tomorrow!" Doizaki said they wanted to reflect the support and pride he’s sensed so far in town and is returning that by featuring orange and black at the shop as a shout out to Selma High as those are the school’s colors. They’ve also kept green and orange in the interior to reflect their menu’s fresh options and the colorful salmon meat in some of the bowls.
“Selma has a lot of pride. They want to support new businesses so it’s a good feeling. Everybody’s been great,” Doizaki said.