2023 Poke Fest Recap

2023 was a milestone year for the Kauai Poke Fest. We won #4 best food festival in America by USA Today’s 10Best, we nearly doubled attendance from last year, in addition to Sam Choy, we had two new celebrity chefs join us – Aarón Sánchez and Ronnie Rainwater, we had our first international competitors all the way from Canada, and we served over 700 pounds of fresh ahi.

None of this would be possible without the tremendous support of the Kauai community, Koloa Landing Resort, Sam Choy, Aarón Sánchez, Ronnie Rainwater, our incredible competing poke chefs, and everyone that came out and made the festival such an incredible success. Mahalo!

Below are the results from this year’s poke competition.

1st Place – Ahi Poke Lumpia Roll by Grecean Manuel
2nd Place – Deconstructed Poke with Shoyu Caviar by Kepa Kruse
3rd Place – Anatta’s Twisted Thai Poke v2 by Koa Kimmerle
4th Place – Crunchy Onion Truffle Oil Ahi Poke Topped with Dungenous Crab by Kekila McCullen
5th Place – Poke ‘Awa ‘Awa Wela by Russell Fernandez
6th Place – OKA Samoan Poke by Eliza Fuimaono
7th Place – Poke Crostini by Bryson & Brooke Sugahara
8th Place – Poke Street Tacos by Taylor Sakimae
9th Place – Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow by Rafael Camarillo
10th Place – Olohelohe Oyster Poke Shooter by Jerrold Tagavilla
11th Place – Poseidon’s Treasure by Raelyn Santos
12th Place – Mango Ginger Ahi with Garden Island Gazpacho by Ajay Oppelaar
13th Place – Thunder by Yoriko Bancroft
14th Place – My Hero Poke Bowl by Sarawut Phiromkaiphak
15th Place – Da Mauna by Conrad Palakiko
16th Place – Ridin’ the Friendly Waves by Reggie Erorita
17th Place – Smok-Eh by John Kelekoma
18th Place – Ahi poke Roll with Coconut Poi & Crunchy Garlic by Meghann Matsuda
19th Place – Taekyung Poke Dressed in White Soy by Victor Sundin
20th Place – Mike’s Poke by Michael Alvarez