I mention poi a lot in Penniless Hearts. Maybe I feel it's my civic duty as an author to gently warn my readers about it, kind of like a public service announcement or something.
Anyway Poi is a paste made from pounding taro root and it is definitely an acquired taste. In fact, I've heard of people who use it for other applications, such as a substitute for wallpaper paste. If you ever find yourself at an authentic luau and see a beige vat of something that looks like three day old gruel, take a chance and see if you survive. Can't say I didn't warn you.