As the depth of food options at Westfield UTC continues to grow, the assortment of eateries will be joined by Sweetfin Poke, which opens at the mall on Friday, February 9. Already a standout amongst poke shops in Los Angeles, with seven locations and counting in the area, this is Sweetfin’s first foray into San Diego. Another branch has been announced for North County’s One Paseo development, where it will launch in Early 2019.
Open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily, the fast-casual eatery’s 1,100-square-foot space at UTC features a 600-square-foot patio and holds seating for 46. The restaurant’s surf-chic design blends Sweetfin’s style with elements of San Diego beach culture in bright and airy backdrop of whitewashed woods and handmade tiles is shades of blue and white.
Founding chef/partner Dakota Weiss is behind the “pole to bowl” menu based on fresh, sustainable seafood which allows diners to build their own bowls or order signature creations from Weiss, which include salmon in yuzu kosho sauce and mango albacore with ponzu lime sauce, macadamia and ginger. Add-on toppings range from pickled shiitake mushrooms to wasabi toasted coconut.
Available exclusively at this location for the first month of business is a special collaboration between Weiss and local chef Claudette Zepeda-Wilkins, who share the bond of being competitors on Top Chef. Weiss was on season nine while Zepeda-Wilkins, who is opening El Jardin in Liberty Station, is featured on the current season. Their special Baja Bowl, priced at $13.95, was inspired by the flavors of tostilocos, a popular street food snack, and the desire to showcase cross-border cuisine. The bowl includes sustainably-sourced albacore tuna with a sour plum and serrano sauce, cucumber, tajin jicama, tortilla strips and sticky rice with crispy corn.