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April 7, 2006, Volume 6 Number 14

Dear " Guam Food Guy" Reader,

PHARE 2006 is up and off to a grand start! Yes, the Pacific Hotel & Restaurant Expo is being held at the Hilton and occupies two floors filled with exhibitor booths showcasing goods and services to hospitality professionals. If you are looking for foods, electronic equipment, cleaning products, cooking equipment, every conceivable beverage (hot& cold, including wines), advertising, telecommunications, plants, and seafood, then you should make it a point to stop by the Hilton Guam Resort & Spa and take a look at some of the latest, state-of-the-art solutions to your needs.

Organized by the Guam Hotel & Restaurant Association, PHARE 2006 is also a Travel Trade Show, and is featuring groups from all over Micronesia. Today I attended the 'Magnificent Micronesia' presentations which were conducted by representatives from the Marshall Islands, the CNMI, Pohnpei, Yap, and Palau. There are events and seminars planned for Friday April 8, including a professional cooking competition called 'Do the Tango with Chicken Mango', as well as another competition on Saturday for the Culinary Students at Guam Community College, which will be called 'Tropical Tilapia'. PHARE 2006 ends on Saturday, with a bartending competition called 'Let's Twist Again'. The event is open to trade professionals on Friday and to the general public on Saturday. Be sure to come down and share in this year's exciting, informative, and fun-filled show! See you there!

In closing, we wish to honor the memory of our dear friend and colleague, Roland Boudreau, whose unfortunate demise occurred just over a year ago. A small memorial service was held this past weekend at a friend's home. Roland was the epitome of hospitality - he will always live on in our hearts and minds.

Ken, the "Guam Food Guy"

In Today's Issue:

  • GFG Top Picks for Biz Lunch 2006 - Directions March Issue Hot Off the Press
  • Wild Asparagus 2006 at Manhattan Steakhouse - A Sure Sign Spring is Here
  • Easter Specials - Buffets, Italian Choices and Tarza Too!
  • This Time Last Year - Highlights from the GuamDiner Newsletter
  • Around The Island - Kai Restaurant, Joinus Teppanyaki, Truong's Vietnamese
  • Marriott Cafe's Dim Sum Wednesdays - Fabulous Treats to Touch Your Heart!

GFG Top Picks for Biz Lunch 2006 - Directions March Issue Hot Off the Press

The March Issue of Directions Magazine will soon be in the mail as well as at the bookstores and newsstands, and is certainly one issue you'll want to hang on to. Why? Because the Guam Food Guy's Top Picks for the Business Lunch is featured. I'm really excited about this particular issue since it has a fantastic photo of me and my good friend and colleague, Peter Duenas, Executive Chef at Sam Choy's Guam USA. The cover of the magazine has the beaming face of Harold Allen, the President of the University of Guam. Other articles featured are on Infrastructure, Finance, and Retirement Plans.

Wild Asparagus 2006 at Manhattan Steakhouse - A Sure Sign Spring is Here

It's that time of year again when Manhattan Steakhouse celebrates that most seductive vegetable, known as the Queen of vegetables, the noble asparagus. Wild Asparagus 2006 will run through the end of May and asparagus will be served in a variety of ways, including soups, cold appetizer, cooked with seafood, steak, and poultry. Asparagus is prized for its delicate taste and achieves perfection when matched with Hollandaise sauce. Manhattan is open from 6-10pm, with reservations recommended. Please call 648-1810.

Easter Specials - Buffets, Italian Choices and Tarza Too!

Easter is just over a week away and you don't want to miss out on making reservations for the restaurant of your choosing. Our restaurant subscribers have posted specials for you to choose from which you can find by clicking here. There is also an Easter Specials banner on the front page of where you can get up-to-minute information as new items are being added daily.

This Time Last Year - Highlights from the GuamDiner Newsletter

April 8, 2005 Vol 5 No 14

Restaurant Reviewed: La Mirenda Sunday Brunch - Extraordinary Dining in Paradise

PHARE 2005, April 14, 15& 16
Dining Down Under, An Australian Food Festival at La Mirenda, April 11-17
GFG Top Picks in March 2005 Directions

Around The Island - Kai Restaurant, Joinus Teppanyaki, Truong's Vietnamese

Last week's round-up of Japanese prompted us to visit a special izakaya-style eatery, Kai Japanese Restaurant. This is the only restaurant on Guam where you can get fresh made tofu prepared while you wait. This specialty is called Tezukuri-tofu ($6.75), and when ready, you just add two condiments for eating, a bit of green pepper and dashi. We also had the Ebi-Kakiage ($6.75), which is like a fritter only with whole shrimp and vegetables. I had three kinds of sushi, and a California Roll. My companion had a set of five Vegetarian Sushi, which was a real treat. Chef Kanda-san was offering a special appetizer of asparagus wrapped in bacon. It was delightful. Kai is located in Tumon's Blue Lagoon Plaza, right across San Vitores from Stanlee's, and is only open for dinner.

Now that there are more teppanyaki restaurants open, it's easier to get seated at Joinus Restaurant in Tumon Sands Plaza without the long wait for a table. We recently had a business luncheon at Joinus and I had the steak, chicken and bacon-wrapped shrimp combination. This is still a reasonable value at $12.75, and includes salad, miso soup, and iced tea. The only thing I suggest they do is increase the suction of the exhaust as the grease molecules saturate your clothing and glasses!

It had been a long time since we'd been to Truong's Vietnamese Restaurant in Upper Tumon's East West Center. Truong's is probably the fanciest Vietnamese Restaurant in terms of decor and ambiance, and the food's pretty decent, too. We had the Fresh Shrimp Kelaguen ($8.95), which is more like a spicy shrimp salad. It was really refreshing and not too pika. We also had the Combination Stir Fried Chicken with Vegetables ($7.95), and Truong's Special Fried Rice with Deep Fried Spare-ribs ($8.95). This special fried rice is a treat, and had sweet sausage, chicken, eggs, and onions. Truong's is always a great place for small parties and take out. The family takes pride in their food and service.

Marriott Cafe's Dim Sum Wednesdays - Fabulous Treats to Touch Your Heart!

If you love dim sum as I do, then you absolutely must go to the Marriott Cafe on Wednesday for the all-you-can-eat Dim Sum, which literally translates as "to touch your heart", and that's what these delicacies do! From now until May 31, you can eat dim sum to your heart's content either for lunch or dinner, and only on Wednesdays! Although Dim Sum gets the top billing, the Marriott Cafe has an impressive buffet spread with a lunch time price of only $15 (plus 10% sc), which is without a doubt the best dim sum value on Guam. The dinner buffet is $35 for adults, $17.50 for children 6-12 years and the usual 10% service charge is added.

It also the best quality dim sum on island, and there is an excellent reason. The dim sum is prepared by the husband and wife chef team of LeLand and LiFen Feng, who originally made the revered dim sum for the legendary Lotus Garden, the famous Chinese Restaurant that was the pride of the Pacific Star Hotel before it became the Marriott. When you arrive for lunch or dinner, you will see LiFen busily working moving steaming baskets up and down at her dim sum stall. She explains to customers what type of dim sum they are selecting, and answers any questions they have. I was both surprised and impressed by the variety of unique and enticing dim sum dishes that are available. Among these are Shrimp Ball with Egg White, Crab Meat Roll with Spicy Sauce, Salmon and Chinese Olive on Tofu, Sweet Rice Ball Dumpling, Shumai with Quail Eggs, Chicken and Portabella Mushroom, and Pan-Fried Shumai.

All in all, I had probably a dozen or so different Dim Sum dishes, so the majority of the buffet hot line and salad items, including dessert, were beyond my capacity. I had a dollup of hot chili paste on a plate and Chef Leland (who is also Marriott's Executive Sous Chef ) had a continuous procession of dim sum plates delivered to my table. I savored the flavors and relished the delicate textures of these remarkable pairings, as most came in a selection of two. The salmon was steamed to a perfectly delicate state, and then topped by a Chinese black olive. Both of these were placed atop a plank of tofu that was afloat in a truly magnificent sauce, which seemed to be a blend of soy sauce and Chinese wine, flavored by chives.

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Bon appetit!

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