At Poki District, customers can build their own bowls from a variety of options. Credit: VIA POKI DISTRICT/INSTAGRAM

Poki District will celebrate the grand opening Saturday of its new location in RIO Washingtonian Center in Gaithersburg.

The local fast-casual chain, which serves the increasingly trendy Hawaiian raw fish bowl, announced the opening Wednesday on its Facebook page. The restaurant plans to open its doors at 236 Boardwalk Place at 11 a.m. and to give away the first 50 poke bowls ordered by customers. A hula dance show is scheduled for 1 p.m., according to the post.

The chain has locations in Penn Quarter and downtown Washington, D.C., and plans to open another in July in The Spot, an Asian Food hall, that will be located across from Rockville Town Center. Other local locations are planned for the Georgetown Square shopping center near Walter Johnson High School in Bethesda, expected to open this summer, and College Park.

Co-founder Gary Ngo told Bethesda Beat in January the chain has long been interested in expanding into Montgomery County.

“We have quite a few customers who ask when one will open in Montgomery County,” he said.

Poki District specializes in build-your-own dishes and offers customers a choice of base—either sushi rice, brown rice with quinoa, zucchini noodles or a salad mix—and a selection of proteins including salmon, tuna, yellowtail, organic tofu and chicken breast. The bowl then can be filled with toppings such as mangos, pineapples, seafood salad, ginger and jalapeño, as well as sauces like honey wasabi and ponzu.

The chain’s county locations will join other restaurants offering similar fare including Honeyfish Poke in Congressional Plaza in Rockville. Woodmont Triangle restaurant Hanaro also has recently begun serving the Hawaiian-style dish.


Julie Rasicot

Julie Rasicot can be reached at