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December 10, 2004, Volume 4 Number 50

Dear "Guam Food Guy" Reader,

"There is no place like home! There is no place like home! There is no place like home," chanted young Dorothy in the "Wizard of Oz" as she wished her way back to her farm home in Kansas by clicking her heels together three times. That phrase reflects how I feel about coming back home to Guam after nearly three weeks of travelling in the U.S. I'm excited to be back on the ground and catching up with the many activities that make up a day in the life of the food guy, with eating of course being priority one! I've lived on Guam for over 26 years of my life, starting back when I first came here in 1959. I know a lot of people and families here...there simply is no other place where I've been that has Guam's special energy (even when the power's off!!). We just make do here, and enjoy the ocean waves washing up against our shorelines...our skies are's no wonder why so many visitors want to come to Guam for a holiday. Our fresh air, blue oceans, clear skies, and balmy temperatures makes Guam a perfect place to "vegetate", and when they're ready to eat, we've got restaurants galore, with new ones on the horizon.

If you've not had the chance to do so, make it a point to walk up and down San Vitores's really looking impressive...the plants, shrubs and trees that are planted alongside (as well as inside the center islands) the road, the street lights, underground power and phone lines, clean sidewalks, and well-landscaped entrance ways. At night, the Hilton has created a dreamy winter wonderland with overhanging lights that take your breath away with their starry luminescence. We have a lot for which to be grateful, folks...we really need to count our blessings. The "grass is not necessarily greener" on the other side. We have an abundance of "green grass" right here. As Dorothy repeatedly said, "there is no place like home!" She's right!

Ken, the "Guam Food Guy"

Note: due to a staff emergency, this week's newsletter content is abbreviated. We will return to normal in next week's edition.

In Today's Edition

  • Guam Girl Scout Tree Sale Starts this Weekend
  • Tulong Kabayan Guam - Typhoon Relief Organization Accepting Donations
  • Tian Tian Chinese Restaurant - Where Two Wongs Make it Right!

Guam Girl Scout Tree Sale Starts this Weekend

It's that time of year again when the Matson containers open up to deliver some of the Pacific Northwest's freshest Noble and Douglas fir trees, making them available to island residents at the Guam Girl Scouts Annual Christmas Tree Sale. Starting Saturday, Dec. 11, at 9am, you can select your own personal Christmas tree (which you can even have '"named" by the GFG) at the Guam Girl Scout Center in Tamuning. The sale will last until 6pm, and will resume on Sunday until the trees are all sold. Support the island's Girl Scout organization by purchasing your Christmas tree this weekend at the Guam Girl Scout Center...these trees always bring smiles and laughter to your home, and have a natural pine-fresh fragrance that'll last the holiday season. Biba Guam Girl Scouts - where Girls Grow Strong!

Tulong Kabayan Guam - Typhoon Relief Organization Accepting Donations

The recent devastation that Typhoons Unding, Violeta, Winnie, and Yoyon have wreaked on our neighbor, the Philippines, has cast a pall on the normal cheeriness of this holiday season, where there are reportedly 100,000 homeless people. Fortunately, a local relief organization has been formed to collect money, food and supplies for the many victims of this natural disaster. "Tulong Kabayan Guam" is collecting canned meats, canned fruits, canned fish, and unopened bags of rice, noodles and non-perishable foods at a number of drop-off points on the island. Among these are National Office Supply (Barrigada, Micronesia Mall, and Tamuning); KTKB 101.9 in Harmon across from Genghis Khan; the Philippine Consulate Office (ITC Bldg.); the Communications Dept. in the Governor's office in Adelup; Pinoy Express in Dededo; Rustan's Foreign Exchange in Harmon; GPE in Harmon, and Triple J Motors in Tamuning. Canned goods are being accepted at the Mayor's offices in Dededo, Yigo, Mangilao, Tamuning, and Agat. Share some of what you have for this worthy and vital may be saving some lives and will certainly be making someone's day better.

Tian Tian Chinese Restaurant - Where Two Wongs Make it Right!

Imagine my surprise and astonishment when I recently found out that one of my preferred "cheap-but-good" Chinese eateries, Wing's in Tamuning, had closed and re-opened as Tian Tian Chinese Restaurant. When I dropped by there on a Sunday night, I saw the familiar face of Angela Wu, who had been a long-time server at Wing's. She has taken over the business since the previous owner moved to Hong Kong, and Angela told me that she has done what many would find unthinkable - lowered the menu prices and improved the food quality!! This I still find hard to believe, but after meeting the Wong brothers, who are from Shanghai, I tasted, paid, and left, marveling at what I considered to be a pretty fair price for some really good chow.

Tian Tian is located in Tamuning just past the Guam Airport Hotel and Reliable Pool Cleaning (look for the water storage containers on the roof). Tian Tian is open seven days a week, serving lunch from 11am to 2:30pm, and dinner from 5:30 to 10:30pm. Take out orders are accepted by calling 649-5107 or 649-9887. Tian Tian is not a fancy place. It is one of those convenient "hole-in-the-walls" where one goes for inexpensive dining without atmosphere. Tian Tian seems to be brighter and better lit inside than Wing's was, and it seems cleaner. There is a No Smoking section in a separate room, and the area is well-vented and cool.

I ordered one of my favorites - Crispy Fried Chicken ($7), as well as Kang Kong with Garlic ($7), and Young Chow Fried Rice ($7). All were decent portions (actually, the chicken seemed to be more than ample). The chicken was as good as I'd remembered, and comes along with shrimp crackers (which I found a little stale) and a white vinegar finedene. Though fried foods are not the best thing for me health wise, there are times when the real thing is irresistible, and this was one of them. The chicken is chopped up in convenient to eat small pieces, so it's easy to see that it's thoroughly cooked.

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Bon Appetit!

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