A new eatery offering poke and boba tea could open in downtown Keene as soon as early May, according to owner Nirva Driscoll.
Driscoll, of Marlborough, said The Poke Bowl Joint, as it will be called, is slated to open at a vacant 16 Cypress St. storefront next to The Barbery. The restaurant will sell poke bowls, a Hawaiian dish of raw fish often served with grains and vegetables, as well as boba tea, a sweet drink — also known as bubble tea — made with tea, milk and tapioca pearls.
Driscoll said she decided to open a poke place in Keene because a similar business in Brattleboro that she co-owns with her brother, Jean-Paul Charles, has proved popular. That restaurant, Vibez Lounge, opened last October, according to Driscoll.
"We've had people flooding here from New Hampshire to get our bowls," she said. "We're excited to bring it to Keene."
Driscoll, who will be the sole owner of The Poke Bowl Joint, said the reception from Elm City residents has been very strong since she announced her new venture on social media.
In fact, Driscoll has since asked the landlord at 16 Cypress St. whether she can rent a larger space in the building. That could delay her initial timeline of opening May 1, but Driscoll expressed confidence that local demand for poke bowls and boba tea will be worth having a bigger operation.
"It did so well here in Brattleboro, so why not bring it to New Hampshire?"