Hawaiian-style poke restaurant Island Fin Poke is about to strengthen its D.C. area presence with its first Virginia location. The Florida-founded restaurant serves traditional poke in the form of build-your-own, customizable bowls, and has been operating its first D.C. area location in Bowie, Maryland, since January. After a successful first six months in Bowie, the brand is pushing to expand and has just announced its first Virginia location coming to Falls Church this Fall at 7501 Leesburg Pike Suite 129.
The restaurant provides guests with farm-to-fork, locally and responsibly sourced ingredients for each individual to create their own perfect poke bowl. With eight proteins, over 25 toppings, house-made sauces and specialty mix-ins, the endless possibilities allow guests to get creative and try something new every visit. With the restaurant’s comfortable beach shack environment, co-founder Mark Setterington hopes to bring Falls Church residents straight to the tropics as they enjoy fresh and healthy meals.
“One of the most important things for us as a brand is to uphold traditional Hawaiian standards in our cuisine,” said Setterington. “Not only is our menu authentic, but we make sure every restaurant reflects the value of Ohana. For us, ohana is a way of life, and we want every guest that walks through our doors to know they are a part of the family.”
Island Fin Poke’s operating locations have been successful throughout the pandemic, which has poised the brand for continued growth. The brand’s business model gives restaurants the ability to pivot quickly to remain up-to-date on local guidelines to ensure the safety of staff and guests.
After working in the restaurant industry for 36 years and overseeing 10 restaurants throughout Las Vegas and Los Angeles, Setterington and his co-founder, Paul Reas, decided to launch Island Fin Poke to bring guests high-quality poke in an immersive tropical environment. The duo’s first location opened in Orlando, and over the past three years Island Fin Poke has grown to eight locations across five states. The Falls Church location will be Island Fin Poke’s entry to Virginia, with plans for more growth in the area.
“We are excited to expand to Falls Church because of the amazing food scene,” added Setterington. “We believe that the local residents will appreciate our family-oriented culture and personal attention given to every guest. Our Bowie location has been very successful and our expansion to Falls Church is just the beginning for the D.C. metro area.”
The new location comes at a time when Island Fin Poké continues to rapidly expand its national footprint. In addition to its open restaurants, Island Fin Poke has 26 locations in various stages of development across the country. While Setterington operates his own locations in Florida, the brand is actively seeking franchisees to join the ohana and bring the poke concept to their home communities.