When it comes to local expansion efforts, few homegrown food concepts have been able to match the pace of Sam Demetriou’s Cheeky Poké Bar. Brisbane’s pioneering poke concept has thrived in recent years, opening new locations at Westfield Garden City and Ulster Lane in The City while also putting plans in motion for one more site in West End before the end of the financial year. Those plans were realised this week when Cheeky Poké Bar officially launched at West Village on Wednesday June 9. Cheeky Poké is no stranger to West End – an express location was a staple of West Village’s open-air dining space The Garden Pantry up until the strip was broken down in anticipation of the precinct’s latest stage of development. Now, Sam has brought Cheeky back into the fold with this newly open locale on the ground floor of the historic Peters Ice Cream Factory. Beyond Cheeky’s established relationship with West End, Sam’s own familial roots are planted deep in the suburb – his grandmother called West End home after arriving in Australia from Cyprus in 1972, making this return somewhat of a homecoming.
The 85-seater site, which sits between Beirut Bazaar and Anita Gelato’s soon-to-open first Queensland location, boasts a mixture of indoor and outdoor seating (while the nearby green space is perfect for impromptu poke picnics). Design crew Archie Bolden and construction specialists DCB Developments have once again teamed up to apply Cheeky’s established modern-industrial aesthetic (complete with deep blues, gold trim and concrete textures) to the heritage-listed space. Inside sits a central horseshoe-shaped counter that dispenses poke from one side and drinks on the other, while cushy booths and banquettes line the walls. The full menu of Cheeky Poké Bar eats has been brought across to West Village, including its customisable poke bowls, nori- and wonton-shell tacos, warming soups (including chicken-bone broth, tom yum noodle and green curry), wagyu-beef tataki, sashimi tasting plates, red-curry scallops and tuna nachos. In addition to the eats, the bar also dispenses tap and bottled beers, signature cocktails, a range of G&Ts, Australian and international wines, and refreshing mocktails.
Cheeky Poké Bar West Village is now open to the public seven days a week. Click over to the Stumble Guide to peep the menu and opening hours.