Yesterday we took the chowpup to a 3:30 pm production at the Imagination Stage's new facility in Bethesda. (This is a children's theatre, recently relocated from its former location in White Flint Mall.) It didn't take much for me to figure out that this would put us in the Bethesda dining district in the early phases of dinner time.
We decided to try Tako Grill since the chowpup (4 years old) is a big fan of Japanese food. We were all disappointed to find that the Godzilla mural that once loomed behind the sushi bar is gone. But the food is as good as ever, and Tako Grill continues to do a good job on both sushi and cooked food.
What makes Tako Grill particularly kid friendly is the fact that the a la carte sushi menu is by-the-piece, plus they have a fairly extensive menu of grilled small plates. You should be able to find something for your child, and you can also set up a real tasting menu.
I had the Chirashi, which has an excellent variety of fish-salmon, tuna, yellowtail, two kinds of white fish, giant clam, surf clam, shrimp, gobu root, squid, octopus, plus a few more I've forgotten. Everything was fresh and well cut (I've been running into some amateur cutting on occasion elsewhere). The assortment also includes tamago (egg omlette) and crab stick, which the chowpup enjoyed.
My spouse had the regular sushi assortment, notable for the incredibly creamy avocado in his California rolls. We also had grilled asparagus (sublime), brocolli (slightly bitter), and a very nice grilled squid. The chowpup decided she only wanted to eat the squid tentacles. The only real disappointment was the grilled rice balls. I don't think that works too well for them; they just tasted like slightly scorched teriyaki sauce.
The by-the-piece sushi menu paid off when it was time to order the uni, as we avoided any debates about who should get the extra piece. The chowpup tried to talk me out of my piece anyway.
By six-thirty, the dining room was at least half full, and most of the tables included kids. I didn't see any ill-behaved ones, either. So for those of you wondering where to take the kids for a Sunday dinner in Bethesda, Tako Grill is definitely an option.
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