December 19, 2003, Volume 3 Number 51
You had to be there to really appreciate it...."The Islander Inn" and the "Kennedy Cafe", that is. What is this you say? Another hotel and a new restaurant? No, not exactly...but actually something on a much smaller scale, but with really big potential. These "venues" were the result of a special two-day Christmas Hotel Project developed by the first and third year students of the Tourism Academy which was held at the G.C.C./John F. Kennedy High School satellite facility on December 17 and 18. The moment you walked in you were warmly greeted by the cheerful staff and taken on a short tour of the hotel facilities, including "Tumon City". The Guest Relations Officer (all roles were performed by students) explained about the various segments of Guam's tourism industry as well as about some of the career opportunities. Another Guest Relations officer described the hotel layout as well as the different roles the students played. The Lobby Area allowed for a relaxing rest while you watched a slide show presenting various tourism-related student activities such as WAVE Club events. A Fun & Games activity was organized by P.I.C. with student "Clubmate" trainees. The final segment of the hotel tour was a Housekeeping demonstration, which had a mock-up of a typical hotel room. As I left, I was offered a complimentary breakfast meal coupon to the Kennedy Cafe, located just down the hall.
Set up as a cafe, each guest was seated, offered juice, coffee, or tea, given a menu, and then escorted to the kitchen where your order was taken. There were several choices, however I had Rudolph's Fried Rice, Wish List Eggs (as you want them with two slices of bacon), and the Jingle Bell Pancakes, which were nice and fluffy, and pretty darned tasty! I also had two homemade Merry Muffins (banana and pumpkin), which were delicious. The students worked in a full-sized kitchen completely outfitted with commercial equipment and hotel grade table ware. It was a very impressive demonstration of our young people's capabilities. Kudos to Susan Seay, Carol Cruz, and Barry Mead (all GCC Tourism Academy instructors) for an outstanding job of giving these students a taste of the hospitality industry - these kids really made a great showing. Bravo!
Ken, the "Guam Food Guy"
In Today's Issue:
Around the Island - Christmas Specials from LTB, Planet Hollywood and Sam Choy's
One doesn't see as many Christmas specials for dining out as for Thanksgiving but there are still some great meals out there to be enjoyed. More are being added daily so check out the Christmas Specials and New Year's Specials links on the front page at GuamDiner.com
Christmas Eve diners can join Chef Bertrand at Le Tasi Bistro for an exceptional special Christmas menu which features Puff Pastry filled with Seafood, 3 choices for entrees one of which is Duck Breast with Black Cherry Sauce and Baked Alaska for dessert. Reservations are highly recommended so call them at 472-7877.
Planet Hollywood is offering their Roast Ham with Pineapple Glaze meal for take-out. They are also serving a 3-course special set menu through the New Year (Jan 4) which features your choice of entrees from Grilled Salmon Filet, Lobster Thermidor and Grilled Tenderloin and includes a Planet Hollywood Holiday Gift. Call 647-7827 to reserve or order your ham.
The very cleverly written Christmas Tale from Sam Choy's deliciously describes their special Christmas set menu. While the story is clever we're sure the food will be even better with Seared Ahi appetizer, Prime Rib & Ham for the main course and Pecan Tartlet a la mode for dessert. All of this and more for only $29.95 plus 10% service charge. Make reservations by calling 649-6637.
Y Kusina's Hard to Find Pastries - The Early Bird Gets the Pie or Cake!
You know a place is popular when you go for lunch and want to have dessert only to be told they're already out. That's the story over at Y Kusina, one of Guam's best Chamorro restaurants. We ate there this past week and had their famous Fried Chicken ($7.50) and that day's special of Kadon Pika, along with their trademark Shrimp Kelaguen - the red boonies really stood out. We asked for dessert and were told it was all gone, and then told it's best to come around 8am!?! in the morning to get dessert. They make a few daily from a rather awesome list that includes Pumpkin Coconut Pecan Cake, Coconut Cream Pie, Apple Pie, Latiya, Carrot Cake, Strawberry Short Cake, and Lemon Meringue. These desserts are reputed to be phenomenal. So, if you want some, call 646-2052, but save a slice for me!
May's Restaurant - Where "Common Food" Means Great Chinese
When I asked one of my Chinese acquaintances why she and her husband liked May's Restaurant so much (they are regulars who've lived on Guam for a number of years), she said it was because May served "common" food, the kind of food that didn't require ornate platters or silk tablecloths. Just good down-home comfort food, which is the kind everybody loves, whatever culture or cuisine style. Of course, May's Restaurant is Chinese and they are celebrating the Grand Opening of their new location in the Kim Chee Business Complex in Tamuning on Friday, December 19. A private, invitation-only event will be held in the evening, but breakfast and lunch will be open to the public.
May's has become one of my personal favorites and it's easy to see why. May's owner, May Li, is an enthusiastic and energetic chef/owner, who oversees every aspect of her business working with her husband, Joseph, to assure that things run smoothly for their customers. Customer service has been one of their mainstays, though it is possible that when they are super busy this may be stretched a bit. The staff is constantly moving throughout the restaurant filling glasses with iced tea and checking on hot tea pots. It's a place where many Chinese congregate often in large groups of 8 to 12 to eat. May's is a preferred choice for many.
For this dinner review, I was accompanied by a group of special guests who'd not been to May's and who's opinions I value. I also wanted them to understand that I was not exaggerating when I talked about May's fantastic food experience. Joining Zee and myself were friends and colleagues Jon & Mahie Anderson, and Tony & Patti Arroyo Rodriguez. All in all, this was a group of seasoned, well-traveled diners who could give an honest evaluation of their dining experience. Judging from the remants of our evening's feast, I'd say all were satisfied.
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