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RATINGS
Food
Service
Value
Atmosphere

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PRICE RANGE
$21 - $30
CUISINES
Japanese, Sushi, Asian
Special Diets
Vegetarian Friendly, Gluten Free Options
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meals, features
Reviews (127)
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67
30
11
5
7
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Traveler rating
67
30
11
5
7
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All reviews sesame chicken sushi maiko patrons leftovers
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Reviewed 4 weeks ago

We met up w/ a friend and some relatives for dinner at Taiko at the beginning of our road trip to So Cal after Christmas. There was a short line of patrons outside waiting to get in when we arrived. Once we were seated, the...menu had a good variety of bento box and sushi selections. Some of our orders came to our table almost immediately after our order was taken. The bento box portions were very generously sized but the cooked items were only lukewarm. We really enjoyed the sesame chicken and had enough leftover to have for lunch the next day. We all agreed that we had a pleasant meal and would eat at this restaurant again the next time we are in Irvine.More

Date of visit: December 2022
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This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed September 7, 2022

Based on reviews, had expectations of a quality Japanese dining experience that is: fresh food, carefully prepared, delivered to the table hot and savory. The tempura seafood and vegetables were pale, soggy and cold. The calamari was tender but tasted burnt. Sesame chicken was cold,...soggy with much gristle. Green beans were overcooked and tasteless. All this accompanied by mediocre service and a boisterous atmosphere. Most disappointed.More

Date of visit: September 2022
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Reviewed May 3, 2022 via mobile

Wow, amazing sushi, even for the non-initiated who have always avoided sushi because of the fish. Service and quality was amazing with plenty of choice for everyone - and as always we ordered way too much, but everything was great. Highly recommend the scallops. Easy...to get to and plenty of parking.More

Date of visit: May 2022
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Reviewed January 31, 2021

We were treated to a lunch here by some friends back in February 2020. The place was hopping as it is very popular. The interior decor is contemporary but traditional Japanese. I don't know about you but I like having standard tables and chairs to...sit in versus the traditional zashiki or tatami seating and maybe a lot has to do with my age. Anyway the food and service is fabulous. My wife had the chicken teriyaki/shrimp tempura combo and Taiko does the chicken as strips. Of this combo the tempura was the better of the two. I had the chirashi on the recommendation of our friends and it was not only amazing but also beautifully plated and plentiful. On top of these separate entrees we also shared in hamachi collars which were fantastic. Though we aren't in Irvine much we won't get too many opportunities to partake of Taiko going forward but we'll keep in mind if we get the chance.More

Date of visit: February 2020
Helpful?2  
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed November 3, 2020 via mobile

Taiko had been sold since our last visit and the entire staff has changed. They are much younger, not as well organized as before. The restaurant remains open with the sushi bar closed during the Covid 19 period. There were a couple of chefs, but...not the banter that was a staple before. Lively and entertaining as it was. The food this night, the menu, seemed to be the same fare. Their Salmon Teriyaki was delicious, my Beef Teriyaki on the other hand was, let’s say very CHEWY. I think I was taking 3 times as long to be able to swallow as any pervious time I had ordered this, I mean it was seasoned and tasted good, just to much jaw motion needed. Prices remain a great value, next time I will try a different dinner. But their California Roll is one we will always come back for.More

Date of visit: November 2020
Helpful?141  
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Reviewed September 23, 2020

My wife and I have been coming to Taiko's for over 30+ years. We were introduced to Taiko by some friends and have been coming ever since. The quality of the food and the friendliness of the servers was just outstanding. We considered this place...home away from home, on a first name basis. There were a few times when we waited about an hour for a table. That's how great Taiko was. We still go back but not as often. After it was sold the atmosphere changed and the price sky rocketed. Now that we are on a fixed budget who can afford go out and eat.More

Date of visit: December 2019
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Reviewed February 10, 2020

For thirty four years my wife, I and over many years our extended aamily of up to ten persons enjoyed what probably was the best Japanese food in Orange County. Especially, the freshness, taste and generous portions of fish in sushi and shashimi preparations, often...very fanciful and inventive, were famous. During weekday nights, one could easily find the bar (after a wait of up to an hour!) settled with many frequent customers who came there over decades and travelled significant distances to enjoy Taiko’s superior sushi and shashimi dishes. The service was always friendly and the customer came first. The exceedingly outdated ambiance was part of the charm of the place. That high level came gradually to an end, when the previous owners sold their restaurant for an astronomic amount to a Japanese owned-chain with over 400 restaurants in Japan). First the prices went up by a quarter by dish per year (which one could still live with), then due to a lot of new servers who were unfamiliar with the capabilities of the sushi chefs or were downright and visibly disinterested came on board. That did not improve the service. But the final blow for us came when one night my wife correctly observed that the famously generous fish portions had visibly shrunk to a meager average, and at the same time prices were jacked up so much that no longer there was any reasonable price-performance proportion. Service by our waitress was unattantive (one must admit she may have been overworked) and a complaint to the Manager just resulted in a friendly apology, but not in a gesture for us, the longstanding customers we were. I am sad that apparently a tradition came to an end for no other reason than greed and ‘corporate instructions’ ( the Japanese chain has about 400 restaurants in Japan). Shame on them , we probably will not go back. The good old Taiko died.More

Date of visit: February 2020
Helpful?5  
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed February 3, 2020 via mobile

Authentic sushi restaurant that was recommended. Got very lucky to sit at the sushi bar w/ no wait, thanks to the super bowl. Ordered 2 rolls & sashimi! Great meal!! bowl.

Date of visit: February 2020
Helpful?1  
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Reviewed January 26, 2020

If you’re in Orange County, you’ve got to eat sashimi at Taiko. So fresh. A real Japanese sushi restaurant, not a cheesy one owned by Koreans with the rice made incorrectly. There is usually a line already formed by the time they open at 5...so get there early or expect at least an hour wait. The parking lot is big but packed so account for that also. The yellowtail and octopus are great.More

Date of visit: January 2020
Helpful?2  
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed October 24, 2019 via mobile

Had dinner at Taiko on a Wednesday, arriving at 4:45 PM, and finally learned the secret of getting a seat at their sushi bar. Get in the line that forms before they open at 5:00 PM. A host will come by and ask where you...want to be seated in the restaurant. Most opted for the sushi bar at that time. Some had brought chairs to sit in the line. We just wanted a table inside and to order our usual dinners. Beef teriyaki and chicken teriyaki, with a California roll and a large Kieran beer. Ordering was done quickly, 2 waters, the beer and two glasses, and the soup arrived in just a couple of minutes after. The main courses got there a little earlier than needed, but it was great to have it all, not looking around for food that has not come yet. California roll is still delicious, after all these years, it might be larger than before. The restaurant interior has been upgraded a little, the last time I remember it was desperately needed. The mains were still delicious and everything was the same as it has been enjoyed for years. At $42.00 this is a great meal at a great price. We will return....More

Date of visit: October 2019
Helpful?5  
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed August 2, 2019 via mobile

We have tried coming when they open at 11:30 and it is a zoo. Lots of folks jockeying for positions in line and for what seems to be a too small parking lot and too few spaces. The restaurant itself remains as it has been...for years. Upgrade needed here I think interior wise. But how would you do it without closing? So we had our favorites California roll, Chicken Teriyaki and Beef Teriyaki, includes soup and tea, we also have a large Kieran Beer. Been doing this for years, will continue as the food remains delightful.More

Date of visit: August 2019
Helpful?3  
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.
Reviewed July 30, 2019 via mobile

We are on vacation in the OC area and wanted sushi for dinner. I did a little research on Yelp and Trip Advisor and came upon this place. It is in a little strip mall, not fancy and very old school simple. The fish was...fresh and delicious and the servings are very large. The place was full of locals and it was busy from the minute we walked in until the minute we left. We found out from our server that the restaurant had been open for around 40 years. We have eaten at many more expensive and fancy sushi places in the OC area, but Taiko is hands down the BEST! We will definitely be back the next time we visit the area. And it was very reasonably priced... a bargain for the taste buds! 🍣More

Date of visit: July 2019
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Reviewed May 7, 2019

Always great food and great service. Authentic Japanese food. Long wait if you arrive a little late however lines go fast.

Date of visit: March 2019
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Reviewed February 19, 2019 via mobile

Just love the combo lunch/dinners and superbly fresh sushi and sashimi served at Taiko. Their Sesame Chicken is a must which is a type of karage (fried) chicken, probably one of the tastiest karage chicken we have tasted and pretty addictive. There is always a...wait whenever we come here whether it’s lunch or dinner but the wait is worth it but definitely try to go early to beat the crowd.More

Date of visit: February 2019
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Reviewed January 8, 2019 via mobile

I have been eating at Taiko for 30 years and every meal has always been great. Under the new management/owner I must say employees aren’t as nice and happy. And the lunch my colleague and I ordered was undercooked. We sent it back and it...still was not cooked properly. There was no offer to make it right. Disappointing!More

Date of visit: January 2019
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TAIKO, Irvine - Menu, Prices & Restaurant Reviews - Order Online Food Delivery - Tripadvisor

Frequently Asked Questions about Taiko

Yes, Taiko offers takeout services.

Taiko is rated accordingly in the following categories by Tripadvisor travelers:
  • Food: 4.5
  • Service: 4.5
  • Value: 4
  • Atmosphere: 4