Born and raised in Kyoto, Japan, Executive Chef Yoya Takahashi moved to Los Angeles with dreams of becoming an actor like his grandfather before him back in Japan. Quickly finding the comfort of home behind a sushi bar in Little Tokyo, Takahashi met his mentor and found his passion was in the practice and art of sushi. Chef Yoya Takahashi’s approach to food is rooted in fresh, local, sustainable and seasonal ingredients– influenced heavily by his time in both Japan and California.
In 2008, Takahashi seized the opportunity to stand behind the counter at Makoto Okuwa’s restaurant, showcasing the style he spent years cultivating– a marriage between classic Japanese techniques and the more modern approaches of the west. He brought this vision to Hamasaku as Executive Sushi Chef, where he introduced his traditional and whimsical sushi style, along with a seasonal menu of dishes featuring premium ingredients from Japan and beyond. Chef Yoya Takahashi was able to push and evolve the tastes of long-established clientele and give Hamasaku new life in Los Angeles’ dynamic culinary landscape.
At kodō, Takahashi will continue to channel this duet of classic Japanese coupled with modern techniques– envisioning a rhythmic dining experience, an izakaya as he remembers, reverberating like that of the beloved Taiko drum. Kodō, or “heartbeat” in Japanese, echoes the pulse of Chef Yoya’s passions– from its atmosphere, design, people, and concept, all of which show in kodō’s culinary approach.