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September 23, 2005, Volume 5 Number 38


Dear "Guam Food Guy" Reader,

If you could snap your fingers and instantly find yourself in a place where you'd want to live right now, where would that be? I don't know about your answers, but for me I can honestly say it's Guam! I took a walk this morning from Airport Road down Ypao Road past the SDA Clinic and then up the steep hill on San Vitores next to the Hilton. The exercise was great since it gave me a chance to try a new walking route and to observe the neighborhoods and people getting ready for work as well as watch the kids waiting for their school buses.

As it has been raining heavily for the past few days, you can well imagine that the grounds are saturated, which left a lot of deep puddles alongside the road, forcing me to walk in the street at times. Amazingly, for every negative thing I encountered (litter, overgrown & dirty sidewalks, or no sidewalks at all), I imagined how much the solution to each problem would really improve things. I thought about the need to plant more flowers (we've already made some progress on planting along our roadsides). Imagine our island with so many flowers, colorful plants, and trees that visitors couldn't help but want to stop and take photos!

The other thing about walking is that we should all do more of it. The vistas are incredible! Why, from one vantage point up on the sidewalk near the old GMH, I was able to see Hagatna's buildings, the First Hawaiian Bank Building in Maite, and then beyond I could see the Leo Palace Resort Complex in Manenggon Hills. You may think I'm nuts, but I could imagine what it would be like to walk from Tamuning to the Leo Palace. I know it would be interesting...just think of all the people you'd see and greet.

It wasn't so long ago that local people had to do just that...walk to their destinations, with some walking from Merizo to Sumay or up to Hagatna. This island needs to consider developing more walking and biking trails, especially now that gas prices have been escalating so rapidly, with even more increases potentially on the way due to Hurricane Rita's threatening impact. One of my walking insights I'll close on has to do with the mainland Chinese, who have been credited for creating the surge in demand that's been pushing up gasoline prices. Simply put into this question: "If you think the price of gas is high now, how much higher to you think it would be if the Chinese started driving SUV's?" Ponder that, then get out your walking shoes!

Ken, "The Guam Food Guy"

In Today's Issue:

"Out of the Darkness, Our Community Walks" - Rainbows Run/Walk - Sept 24

On Saturday, Sept. 24, LifeWorks Guam and Rainbows for All Children will be holding a non-competitive 3 Mile and 1.5 Mile Run/Walk at the Agana Shopping Center. This event in observance of September being Suicide Awareness Live & Learn Campaign Month. The global theme is "Out of the Darkness, Our Community Walks". The net proceeds from this event will go to Rainbows for All Children-Guam. Pre-registration (fee $15, deadline 5pm Friday Sept 23) can be done at any of the following locations: Agana Heights Elementary School, Department of Youth Affairs, UOG, Marks Sporting Goods, Sun Tees. Go Time is 5am and the race/walk will end at 6:45am. A candlelight vigil in memory of suicide victims starts at 7am and ends at 8am. Registration on the day of the event is 4:30am-4:45am (fee $18). For more information, call Marie Halloran at 632-0257, 477-5798 or 777-4624 or Rebecca Respicio at 735-5032.

Happy Anniversary Colonel - KFC Celebrates 30 Years On Guam

We want to take this opportunity to congratulate Guam Fast Foods on the 30th Anniversary of Kentucky Fried Chicken doing business on Guam. I don't have the figures, but I'd be willing to guess that on a per capita basis, Guam's KFC has to be among the top in unit sales. I can't tell you how much KFC I've eaten in my life, and I guess my first experiences were somewhere in the States in the late 60's as the first KFC franchise opened in 1952. As a special promotion, KFC Guam is offering a 30th Anniversary Dinner that includes 12 pieces of original recipe dark meat chicken, 3 large choice sides, 4 biscuits and a FREE 2 liter bottle of Pepsi. Plus you will receive an entry form for a chance to win one of two mountain bikes.

You know Colonel Harland D. Sanders, KFC's charismatic founder, perfected his secret (which is still secret even now) blend of 11 herbs and spices in 1939. He was on the road going from restaurant to restaurant with frying kettles and his ingredients, trying to get folks to try out his special fried chicken. A little known bit of trivia is that the late Dave Thomas, founder of Wendy's, got his first big start in food service by working with Colonel Sanders' KFC and used the money he made from selling his KFC franchises to start Wendy's.

Don't Miss La Brasserie's $10 International Seafood Lunch Buffet Sept 26-Oct 1

Mark your calendars for a lunch date at the Holiday Resort Guam starting the week of Monday, September 26 through Saturday, October 1 where you will enjoy Executive Chef Philip Duong's International Seafood Lunch Buffet at a spectacular price of just $10 (plus 10% service charge). Among the many foods you'll enjoy will be Marinated Basa Fillets with Shallot & Lemon Grass, Stir-Fried Squid with Dried Chili Sauce, Deep Fried Breaded Seafood Sticks with Tartar Sauce, Braised Tofu with Crab Meat Sauce, New Zealand Mussel Kirkpatrick, Seafood Pilaf with Thai Panang Curry or Japanese Vegetable Curry. Call 647-7272 for more information and to make reservations.

"Treasures by the Sea" - Tiffany & Co. & KPRG at Old Hagatna Grill - Oct 1

"Treasures by the Sea" promises to be a uniquely delightful fund raiser. Saturday, October 1, Tiffany & Co. will sponsor this event to benefit KPRG (Public Radio for Guam) at the Old Hagatna Grill from 7-10pm. There will be a cocktail party and Tiffany will be holding their signature fund raiser Keys for the Cause. Tickets are $50 and are available at KPRG Studios at UOG's Dean Circle, and at the Old Hagatna Grill.

Remembering Chef Jeff - 1st Anniversary of Untimely Passing

It was a year ago this Sunday that one of the island's bright and talented chefs succumbed to a diving accident and made his transition to that great kitchen in the sky. Those who had the good fortune to know Jeff Hill, who was the SandCastle's Executive Chef, knew that this humble, quiet-spoken, and easy-going guy was having the time of his life here on Guam. I will forever see him smiling and will keep his memory alive in me as long as I live. Here's to you, Chef Jeff! Thanks for making our lives better and for sharing your culinary creations with us!

This Time Last Year - Highlights from the GuamDiner Newsletter

Sept 24, 2004, Vol 4 No 39

Restaurant Reviewed: Le Creole Cafe at Dai-Ichi Hotel Saipan Beach - Discover A World of Flavors

Highlights:
Grillin ' & Chillin" Contest at Ypao Beach
Pastry Fantasies Created By Visiting Hilton Pastry Chef
Marriott Cafe Re-Opens

Around the Island - Malassadas Back at Cravings, Sabai Dee Lunch Specials

They're Back! Yes, those Portuguese 'donuts' we know as malassadas are back! Best of all, they're made with the famed Auntie M's recipe, so nothing's changed in the taste or in the variety of plain, sugar, or cinnamon-sugar. These tasty fried confections are now available at Cravings, a new eatery that's been months in the making. Cravings is located on Rt 8 in Maite (just off of Marine Corps Drive in the old Quizno's location near Nissan Auto City). Cravings also serves coffees, teas, cookies, cupcakes, sandwiches and soups.They are open weekdays at 6:30am and close around 3:30pm. They have ample seating as well as a play area for children.

Sabai Dee Thai Restaurant has weekday lunch specials that are priced between $6 to $6.50. Sabai Dee is located in Tamuning near the old Tamuning Cinema across from Alupang Beach Tower. See all the specials here but just as a sample: Monday you can get Chicken Pad Thai $6 or Red Curry with Beef $6.50, on Tuesday you can enjoy Fried Pork Chops or Chicken Tom Yum Soup at $6.50 each. The list goes on but you get the idea of great food at a very reasonable price. They also do a weekly drawing where you drop your business card for a chance to win a FREE appetizer on your next visit. Two appetizers we recently had were the Dried Beef and the Fried Chicken, and both were quite good. They also do a great Happy Hour Monday - Saturday, from 5-10pm. For take-out or more information call 649-8424.

Beef-Bowl House Ushiya Japanese Restaurant - Serving More than Meets the Eye

Beef-Bowl House in Tumon opened earlier this year in a location that for several reasons has seen restaurants come and go. Originally located on Route 16 across from the Micronesia Mall, Beef Bowl established its reputation as a value-priced Japanese restaurant, serving a combination of food that many locals love, namely beef and rice! Under new ownership, its new home is in that odd-shaped two-story building just a few yards north of the Holiday Resort Guam. Based on my dinner visit earlier this week I have a feeling that Beef Bowl may be around for a while. While factors such as road construction, typhoons, and economic downturns kept restaurants from succeeding in this location, Beef-Bowl House has a lot more working in its favor, with a lot of that being its impressive 129 item menu!

After you enter the sliding door of Beef-Bowl House, you have your choice of seating, either in the main restaurant section (no smoking is allowed here) that has some tables on an elevated deck as well as on the floor level. The smoking area is in what used to be the Sushi Bar of a previous eatery, Aji-Hey. The inside decor is busy with hanging banners, yellow paper lanterns, colorful traditional Japanese umbrellas, fans, artwork, posters, and menu signs. It's got a style and personality unique to its unusual set-up, and the music that was playing was hip hop from a local radio station (Japanese music would really alter the ambiance). If you are looking for simple dining choices, this place has them, as well as a whole lot more.

The extensive menu is mostly made up of a variety of set menus, featuring beef, pork, chicken, shrimp and fish. There are also a whole range of noodles including hot and cold udons and sobas along with ramen. Other set menus include eel and curry. Bentos are offered as well and I ordered on of those to sample, the Ushiya Bento Box ($9.50).

We ordered two Iced Teas (free) to start, as well as the Gyu-don Beef Bowl, Katsu-don ($8.25), and Big Yakitori Stick (two pcs/$3) from the Side Order Menu. Our server's name was Safely; she later told me her mother, Grateful, had worked at the original Beef Bowl location and now worked here in the mornings. Safely delivered our unsweetened iced teas and it tasted quite awful, in fact it was terrible. We are spoiled by the popular full-flavored brands (China Mist, Lipton, and Shangri-La) served by other establishments that taste so much better but then they cost, too! We soon changed to a canned cold Green Tea for my partner, and I had hot green tea served in a large ceramic cup. My partner marveled at the ice in her glass - they were literally "ice balls" which were as big as golf balls. This was a very cool touch.

The Gyu-don was delivered first. It was served on a lacquered wooden tray. The shredded beef was sauted and served atop a mound of steaming rice with red ginger strips in one section. Also on the tray was a sizeable pile of shredded cabbage covered in a Japanese miso dressing, a bowl of miso soup, and some of those colorful Japanese pickles. The food was palatable if not outstanding.

The next entree to arrive was the Ushiya Bento Box (Safely had advised that this was the most popular item with Japanese visitors). It had shrimp tempura, fried chicken, grilled mackerel, and a choice of poki (my choice), gyoza, calamari or shumai. In addition to the meats and poki the bento included pickles, a large portion of rice sprinkled with furikake, miso soup, and salad. The chicken was very tasty, as was the poki. I put my cone of grated radish in the tempura sauce, and dipped my shrimp in before biting. You can't go wrong with tempura...it really good. The fish was a small piece and a bit to fishy for me, but that is a personal preference as the fishiness is what many people like about mackerel.

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Itadake-masu!

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