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October 12, 2012, Volume 12 Number 20

Dear "Guam Food Guy" Reader,

Talk about another serendipitous moment! I just looked back five years at our October 12, 2007 newsletter and would you believe I featured a photo from my days as a rock musician? Well, this past week was also the 50th anniversary of the Beatles hitting the world stage and as you can see from the intro to our newsletter, we were definitely into and influenced by the Beatles:

Dear "Guam Food Guy" Reader,

Most of you may not know that the Guam Food Guy was a rock musician during his high school years, however, if you were within a 60 ft. radius of him during last Friday night's American English (the Beatles Tribute Band) benefit concert at Sheraton Laguna Guam Resort, you'd have been amazed by how he managed to know and sing along to all the Beatles songs performed. Yes, I joined a ballroom full of ecstatic Beatles fans during one of several concerts raising funds for the Edward M. Calvo Cancer Foundation.

"Come Together - A Beatles Tribute" was the name of this phenomenal show put on by four young American lads who are rated as the best Beatles tribute band re-creating the Beatles as they were known through the early 60's to the 70's.

I was more than just a Beatles fan - I literally idolized Paul and even performed with his trademark violin shaped Hofner electric bass guitar. Our Beatles fascination started in Japan in 1965 and we (my brother Lee & I) put our desires into musical skills, and started playing in a band.

The group which we were most popularly known as in the San Diego/Southern California area was the Mystic Chapter V, and we played at high school dances, county fairs, military clubs, college parties, and at other events. We even managed to achieve a bit of national fame when we played in a Battle of the Bands on Happening 69, a Pop Music TV Show hosted by Dick Clark Productions. In the photo I'm seen dressed in PJ bottoms and camouflage jacket during a practice session (we used black lights to get into the mood). There are psychedelic images of the Beatles in the background taken from their White Album. [Photo: Ken Stewart circa 1968]

What a time! "Those were the days, my friend!."

It's hard to believe that I'm still as excited by the Beatles as I was then. What's more amazing is how their popularity continues to grow with each new generation! This goes to show you how greatness stands through the test of time!

Ken, the "Guam Food Guy"

Pay-Less Super Market Supports Local Farmers

I love to give credit where it is due and today I'd like to commend the good folks at Pay-Less Supermarkets for "putting their money where my mouth is" by supporting local farmers! I took some photos while shopping at Oka Pay-Less in Tamuning on Sept. 30 and was impressed by how well they displayed their locally-grown products in their produce section. They had local cucumbers, chili peppers, cherry tomatoes, green papaya, bananas, lemon grass, taro, yams, kang kong, bittermelon, green beans, eggplant, corn, white radish, assorted basil, calamansi, and patola squash. In the refrigerated section there was the farm fresh living lettuce from Grow Guam! When you've lived on Guam as long as I have you definitely can appreciate how far we've come in having such a cornucopia of locally-grown fresh produce. Bravo Pay-Less!

World Cafe Lunch Buffet
Fiesta Resort & Spa

11 a.m. - 2 p.m.
$17.95 + 10% SC Monday - Friday
$20.95 + 10% SC Saturday
$24.95 + 10% SC Sunday

If you've not yet been to the World Cafe at the Fiesta Resort & Spa in Tumon, you are definitely missing out on one of the island's largest buffet selections. You will definitely understand why they live up to their name, "World Cafe" once you start taking an inventory of the variety of foods they serve in the buffet lines.

Among some of the more notable items are their olives, which seem to run the gamut of colors and types. They also have a Middle Eastern section replete with Tabbouleh, (Levantine Arab Salad made with couscous, tomatoes, finely chopped parsley, mint, onion, garlic, olive oil, & lemon juice), Hummus (Lebanese Chick Pea Dip), and Baba Ghanoush (Persian Roasted Eggplant Dip). Add these to pita and you've got a healthy, delicious treat! They pay tribute to cheese lovers, with grand displays of Stilton, Norwegian Jarlsberg, and green/yellow cheese cubes. Aside from crackers and in-house baked breads, they also offer grapes, dried apricots, sun-dried tomatoes and craisins.

For local dishes you can get chicken kelaguen and finadene, a variety of kimchis, cucumber salad, marinated salad, cauliflower and mushroom salad, seafood salad, bean salad, carrot salad, potato salad and pasta salad. There's also a Mongolian BBQ station where one can choose from a range of toppings (oils and seasonings), vegetables, and meats that are grilled to order.

Among some of their hot items available on the day of my review were pizza, Spicy Potato Soup, Mahi Mahi with Yuzu Koshu Aoili, Lemon Soy Whole Roasted Chicken, Asian BBQ Shortribs, and a spicy Pasta dish with Kalamata olives, red onions, red peppers, and sausage. The buffet's theme changes each day so there are different foods prepared and served from other countries. Mexican, Italian, Japanese, and Asian are some of the popular and recurrent food types.

Fresh fruits and a range of cakes, pies, tarts, and pastries are also part of the elaborate buffet. These pastries are also baked in house. Much of the credit for the World Cafe's fabulous buffet is Executive Chef James Birk, who can be seen walking around checking on his buffet spread making sure that things are going as planned. He's one of the few "working" Executive chefs (when I say working, I mean "cooking"). However you call it, the World Cafe at the Fiesta Resort and Spa is one of the most talked about buffets on island. It appeals to a large cross-section of diners who are there for all the good things they like to eat as well as to enjoy a magnificent ocean vista visible through the restaurants glass-window walls!

Fiesta Location

Open Daily : 6am. - 11 p.m.
(15% discount only at Fiesta location for Locals & Military)

I've said it before and I'll say it again. "I can resist everything except temptation." In this case the temptation is the irresistible Haagen-Dazs store located at the lobby entrance to the Fiesta Resort and Spa! Yes, I was caught trying to walk by this shop after stuffing myself silly at the World Cafe's lunch buffet. I stopped in to see if they had anything new and and soon found myself in a world of "ultra premium temptation"! I did have in mind to re-visit a new product I'd seen a few months back at the Chocolate Festival. These were the Macaroon Melts, which I'd sampled at the event held in the Outrigger. These are one of the better versions of macaroons I've had as they are not nearly as sweet as most "cookie" macaroons are. These are primarily ice cream and come in several flavors (Cookies & Cream, Strawberry, Green Tea, Macadamia Nut, Chocolate, & Vanilla). True to their name, as you eat these they simply "melt" in your mouth! These sell for $2 each. The Dine In set cost $12, and the take-out set is $22 (8 pcs. In a special container).

One of the many new things (new to me) was their Creamy Italian Soda which is available in several flavors (guava, lime, coconut, strawberry, watermelon, orange, and cherry). This is made with and ice cream scoop blended with San Pellegrino Sparkling Water and Monin syrup. I had the intention of leaving this shop unscathed however I was mesmerized by a poster showing what was described as "Strawberry & CREPE Pleasures"! Yes, the poster showed a Haagen-Dazs waffle cone and a Haagen-Dazs cup modeling a scoop of ice cream with a Chocolate-Dipped Strawberry and a crepe wrapping partially around the ice cream scoops. Well I did get to test drive one of these and was it ever delectable! It's called exactly what it is - A Pleasure Cone ($8.50) for a single scoop of ice cream of your choice, and one topping (I had macadamia nuts). The waffle cone was dipped in chocolate and almonds, and it had a crepe (my ice cream choice was Rum Raisin. Mounted on top of the ice cream scoop was a large chocolate dipped strawberry! Talk about sweet and juicy! A paper parasol was stylishly perched above the entire creation. I know for sure that I got a few envious stares from other drivers as I licked my way back to the office!

Sakura's Kitchen
Pacifica Plaza (across from GTA)
Upper Tumon

Open Monday - Sunday 11:00 a.m. - 10:00 p.m.

Sakura's Kitchen has expanded its size and its opening times! That's absolutely great news for Sakura's customers and for Sakura's owner, Bob Yoshida! As he says, business had literally "doubled"! It's no wonder either! The menu is large and deep, with several categories of popular foods including Curry, Sushi, Sashimi, Noodle, Appetizer, American Roll Sushi, and Bento Box favorites. I didn't know I'd be eating as much as I did when I went there on Thursday for a late lunch (after 2 p.m.). There is so much more space it's hard to believe.

I ordered a few items that would be representative of their menu. The first was Spicy Cold Tofu (Kimchee on Cold Tofu with Spicy Sauce) - $3.90. This I have at other restaurants and it was as good as any.

I had been in a mood for a Japanese Curry dish and ordered the Pork Cutlet Curry ($9.95). This was impressively large plated, with tons of rice, red ginger, a pond of spicy, flavorful curry, and a floating log of pork cutlet. Perhaps it was the particular cut of pork this day as the curry gravy was better than the pork which was tough and dry. My curry craving was cured though!

I then ordered something I saw on the menu under Noodles. It was Omusoba - Beef Yakisoba and egg on the top with Mayo - $10.90. This dish amazed me when it was delivered! It was much larger than I'd expected (definitely a dish to be shared by 3-4 people). The egg on top was drizzled with ribbons of mayo and a light tonkatsu sauce. Beneath the egg was a world of delicious yakisoba with shreds of beef generously scattered about in a blend of cabbage and carrots. I liked combining the red ginger with my noodles. I do recommend this entree.

Another entree I was brought was on of Sakura's Bento Boxes, the Shrimp Tempura + Teriyaki Chicken ($11.45). This is a complete meal for normal people, complete with salad (lots of crisp greens and a pleasant Japanese dressing). The salad was garnished with an orange slice, maguro tuna sashimi, rice with black sesame seeds, shrimp and vegetable tempura, a generous portion of chicken teriyaki, and miso soup. All of this was worth the price, though I've had better tempura as the batter seemed a bit thick.

Finally, I was treated to one of Sakura Kitchen's new American Style Sushi creations, the Rainbow Roll (Salmon, Tuna, Shrimp, Avocado on top of California Roll) - $11.95. This one has all the elements that I like, fresh avocado, shrimp, maguro, and salmon with an imitation crab blend on the inside. There are so many more sushi rolls on the menu I'd like to try such as the Spicy Negitoro Roll ($7.95) or the spicy salmon. The Spider Roll has soft shell crab ($11.95). All of the price points at Sakura's Kitchen are ideal for the local families who come to eat. The expanded hours has made a world of difference since they offer a flexibility suited to working families with kids getting out of school as well as to anyone who's missed the normal opening hours window of many other restaurants.

Stop by Sakura's Kitchen in Upper Tumon for a affordable Japanese dining!

Delmonico Kitchen & Bar
Bayview Hotel

Open :6:30 AM- 10AM
11:30 AM - 2 PM
5:30 PM - 9:30PM

This review is all about one word. "Indulgence." Delmonico Kitchen & Bar (Delmonico for short) should change its name to Indulgence. Just a thought. I've been on a mission for great steaks and the best steaks. I should also include the description "big steaks", since the Porterhouse I had at Delmonico was a full 24 oz. (2 lbs) of grilled succulence! I should also add that this particular meal was the object of a "surf & turf" craving, and Delmonico's combo partnered a 6 oz lobster tail together with my Texas sized Porterhouse.

Though not an advertised special, this steak combo is nick-named the "Marine Plate" and priced at $60.00. It comes with the DKB Mash, a bowlful of mashed potatoes crowned by a baked 3-cheese (parmesan, mozzarella, and jack) topping. This plate originated when some of the visiting Marines started ordering this particular combo and word of mouth quickly spread. The steak was cooked medium rare and lightly seasoned with basis sea salt and pepper (traditionally). I loved each bite. The lobster tail was also quite good. Hard to find fault with this combo, although it doesn't sit well with those advocating meat-restricted diets.

If you like steaks, nobody does it quite like Delmonico. Executive Chef Eddie Chien has developed a variety of steak treatments (preparation styles), which include the No. 86 (Char-broiled with Parsley Brandy Reduction), Local Style, Horseradish, Yakiniku, Cajun, Moroccan, Maitre D', Teppan Garlic, Mongolian, Blue, Classic Pepper, and Smoke House. In addition to the Porterhouse cut, they also offer Ribeye, New York, and Flank Steak cuts and sizes.

Another indulgence found at Delmonico Kitchen & Bar is Mac-N-Cheese ($8 regular or spicy), with optional add-ons(Chicken ($2), Shrimp ($3), Crab ($5), & lobster ($15). I had the Spicy Mac-N-Cheese with Crab. As I said, it was pure indulgence, but the spicy taste made this addictive, which is why I have a hard time resisting temptations.

Delmonico serves dinner until 9:30 p.m., which is when they start their "2nd Happy Hour", which runs until 11:00 p.m. Light appetizers can be ordered during this 2nd Happy Hour!

My Pre-Fixe Mondays (Exclusively for Guahan Residents)
Roy's Restaurant
Hilton Guam Resort & Spa

Roy's has done it again! They've created a new level of dining experience for local residents to explore the Euro-Asian Pacific Rim cuisine that has made Roy Yamaguchi a world renown celebrity chef. This new level is all about exploring the intricate levels of tasting a variety of food combinations affordably prepared in a 3-course Prix Fixe offering ($39.00 + 10% s.c.). Available only on Mondays and for local residents only (proof of residency is required), "My Pre-Fixe Mondays" let's diners choose from a selection of appetizers, main courses, and a dessert.

I had the opportunity to try the most recent menu offering (these are designed to change monthly). We were able to partake of the complete menu by sharing the various dishes. The Appetizers are:

Appetizers - Choose 1

Split Pea & Rock Shrimp Soup
(Proscuitto, Roasted Pepper, Shiso)

This is an amazing concoction taking split peas to a gourmet dimension. Pieces of prosciutto are interspersed throughout the soup, bringing taste surprises with every bite. This soup has layers of flavor brought out by the roasted peppers and bits of shiso (sesame leaf), which offer a clean and distinct intensity.

Poached Pear & Pecan Salad
(Lemongrass Port Vinaigrette)

This is another special and delicious flavor journey engaging senses. This is a light starter with fresh greens. The baked pecans are sugar-coated and support a slightly sweet and crunchy objective of this salad (that's wonderful when paired with a Sauvignon Blanc). Celery bits offer an alternative crunch experience. The lemongrass port vinaigrette works magically.

5-Spiced Braised Duck
(Shiitake & Poblano Peppers, Jus)

I find it difficult to describe this creation without craving more of it! How the duck was rendered to a lush tenderness exuding remarkable spiced flavors baffles me. Shittakes were made for this dish which really showcases their versatility in adapting taste and investing texture. The peppers were sauteed in a medley with diced red onions and other veggies that I'll have to try again to better understand. Like I said earlier, Roy's is intent on guests exploring tastes in places previously unknown! The duck skin was crisp and rendered fat-free.

ENTREE - Choose 1

Olive Oil Seared Red Snapper
(Cauliflower Couscous, Kalamata Olives, Meyer Lemon Sauce)

As good as it sounds and even tasting beyond description. They really ordained this snapper to be its best, seared outside and moist and flaky inside with layers of taste. The Caulilflower couscous is genius.

Seafood Cioppino
(Mussel, Scallop, Shrimp, Sea Bass Thai Basil Tomato Broth)

Tasting perfection, the traditional Italian soup with a nod to Asian influence. This obviously could be a meal on its own if it was a larger portion.

Spicy Asian Pepper & Lemongrass Sirloin Steak
(Cognac Cream Peppercorn Sauce)

This magical combination celebrates the best of East "meating" West. This traditional rich cream sauce is greatly enhanced by the pioneering and adventurous exploration of layering Asian spice and the subtle essence of lemongrass flavor. It is a surprisingly balanced. The local beans are planted in the folds of the sirloin roulade.

DESSERT (Choose 1)

Hawaiian Pandan Cheesecake
(Pandan Custard Sauce)

This was a new discovery borne from trans-blending cultures. Lots of fun eating with berry surprises, and macadamia nut crust. Pandan is light, subtle, and perfumy. The cheesecake is moist and sauces blend well. Again, these dishes are designed for tasting. They are closer to "right sized" than most the dishes we are served.

Trio of Macaroon
( Chocolate Mousse, Coconut Gelato, Raspberry Coulis)

I'm not usually a macaroon fan, so I was pleasantly surprised to find these not all that sweet. These were made to optimize the flavor of their their ingredients. I still prefer the Cheesecake.

Roy's Prix Fixe Mondays Menu is available for only $39.00. A 10% service charge is applicable and no further discounts can be applied. That said, became a taste adventurer at Roy's! It's time to elevate your senses without breaking your budget! Go to Roy's on Monday's for this special treat! You will simply be amazed by the palate-pleasing creations awaiting you!

Bon Appetit!

Ken The Guam Good Guy

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