The decor at Taiko is pleasant, relaxing, and refreshingly minimalist. Something about the atmosphere seems to encourage conversation; while the surroundings are subdued, there is always a buzz of activity going on in this popular eatery.
For starters, get a round of barley tea (it's free), a refreshing iced tea drink with a hint of smoky barley. Edamame is a tasty appetizer(boiled, salted soy beans--my friend thinks they taste like healthy peanuts), so is the burdock root, very crunchy and marinated in a slightly spicy sesame flavored sauce.
While they serve a number of Japanese dishes, the best bet at Taiko is the udon and soba. I prefer the hot udon myself: fat, doughy noodles with a slightly springy texture. Those on a diet should opt for the healthier, wheat-based soba noodles. Taiko's specials menu changes every day, and features their more exotic offerings, usually considerably more expensive than the regular menu, for the same amount of food. If you're in an a
This one of my favorite places to eat in L.A. The udon combos come with a large bowl of udon and a rice bowl of your choice. Portions are generous but nicely presented, at a very reasonable cost (especially for Brentwood). The Japanese minimalist decor is very pleasant and clean but not too pretentious. Their udon is always just the right texture, and the broth is very tasty. I love the little tempura bits they throw in. I rarely order anything else, but my friends who eat there have consistently enjoyed their salads and sushi items as well. I only wish they would open one of these in Northern California.