You’re going to need eight arms to hold all the food and drink you’ll get at Richard DeShantz Restaurant Group’s new täkō location at Bakery Square.
After a two-year wait, täkō, — which means octopus in Japanese — opens on Thursday, Oct. 14, in the East End development. It’s the second location for the brand. The original concept — a fusion of Japanese and Mexican cuisine — debuted Downtown on 6th Street in 2015.
At 5,000 square feet, the spot at 122 Bakery Square Blvd. is much larger and brighter and boasts more menu items.
There’s seating for about 120 patrons, including a lounge area with comfy couches and chairs, and 15 stools at the bar. A garage door opens up to the front patio. The space also features a “greenhouse” area filled with plants and a cage-style section that houses hundreds of bottles of tequila and mezcal.
Start off with house-fried chips and salsa or other snacks such as chili con queso, street corn and freshly made guacamole.
Tacos, which are served in pairs, range from carnitas and mushroom to the täkō, which features grilled octopus, harissa aioli, fried chickpeas, charred jalapeno pico, mint and cilantro.
There are farm-to-street tortas, authentic Mexican sandwiches, and — exclusive to the Bakery Square site — bowls.
You choose your base (greens, Spanish rice or a grain), add a protein, a seasonal veggie and a cheese, top it with fixings like spicy cucumber, and complete the taste experience with a sauce and some crunch from corn chips, fried onions, a seed mix or chicharrones.
Don’t leave without ordering a margarita. There are a variety of flavors and täkō also serves specialty cocktails such as the Oaxaca Old Fashioned with Reposado tequila, mezcal and orange bitters.
The addition of täkō is part of Walnut Capital’s overhaul of the lifestyle center, which was the longtime home to a Nabisco baking factory.
In June, Galley Group opened Galley Bakery Square, a restaurant incubator that houses four rotating dining concepts. Soon, big Burrito Restaurant Group will bring AVP, an extension of its Alta Via brand, to the Penn Avenue development.