Dear "Guam Food Guy" Reader,
2014 is winding down to an end and we are preparing for unprecedented growth in 2015! One of the most exciting things we will see is the opening of the Dusit Thani Guam Resort! Guam has not seen such a major new property opening since the Hyatt Regency Guam. (We are not including the Sheraton as it was a transition from the Palace Hotel, just as the Pacific Star Hotel was a transition to the Marriott and back to Pacific Star Resort). The Hyatt immediately changed the dynamics for the Food & Beverage and Banqueting options for the island. Dusit Thani will have an even greater impact due to its superior banqueting capacity.
We are also seeing an explosion of new restaurant openings(some of which recently opened - Shamrock's, Thai Noodle Cuisine, L&L Hawaiian Barbecue, Core BBQ & Seafood Restaurant in Acanta Mall) and the Bento Factory in Tumon). I-Hop is under construction and Just Lose It, House of Mocha, and Bangkok Cafe will be opening soon, probably soon after the first of the year. There are even more restaurants in the works! So, fasten your seatbelts, folks, as 2015 will be a landmark year in many ways! Happy New Year!!
Ken, The Guam Food Guy
L & L Hawaiian Barbecue
L&L Hawaiian Barbecue recently opened its doors to the delight of many local residents who identify and appreciate the basic comfort food lunch plate selections made famous in Hawaii. Their menu includes burgers, Teriyaki Steak Sandwiches, Saimin options(Spam, BBQ Chicken, Fried Shrimp), Musubi (who on Guam hasn't had or heard of the Spam Musubi Roll sold in all the Mom & Pop stores?), Hawaiian Bowls, and a huge range of Plates, including Seafood, Chicken, Pork and Beef(the famous Loco Moco).
I stopped in just as they'd opened and wanted to try out one of the plates which was recommended by one of the cooks I knew. It was the Seafood Combo ($10.95), which included Fried Fish (basa), Fried Shrimp, and BBQ Chicken. The plate comes with Macaroni Salad, Steamed white rice, and tartar sauce. Plates are Styrofoam containers which are perfect for both dine-in and take-out. The barbecue chicken has a sweet teriyaki marinade and the shrimp and fish have a panko crisp finish. Another customer had a Stir Fried Garlic Shrimp Plate ($9.95) that I'd asked to photograph. After you place your order and pay, you order is ready for pick-up with 4-6 minutes. For the lunch hour crowd, this is the right answer to satisfy all your cravings.
For the price, these plates are a great value, especially since they are in Tumon! I heard they would be opening up in the Micronesia Mall's food court this next year! To my surprise, they also have a few Healthier Plate choices, such as BBQ Chicken and Garlic Fish, which come with 1 scoop of brown rice, and fresh tossed greens.
The President Nippon
Sheraton Laguna Guam Resort
It is only right to end the year with a spotlight on what has to be an extraordinary Teppanyaki performance at the President Nippon by the Nippon's Chef De Cuisine, Yoshifuru Kaneko. I have had the pleasure of being served by Chef Kaneko during several special dinners. Though this is not a complete review, it is a tribute to the skills demonstrated by a man whom I consider to be the "teppan master chef" for Guam!
We had a company Christmas Dinner at the President Nippon with a menu that started out with a Seafood Cocktail, Minestrone Soup and had an ingeniously prepared Sea Bream with Lobster covered with a clam sauce. However, it was the main course, the Australian Wagyu Beef Sirloin with Vegetables that is shown in the photos. What appeared to be scallops are actually mashed potatoes. The scoring pattern on the sliced eggplant halves sizzling on the griddle looked like an odd version of tic-tack-toe.
Chef Kaneko most impressed me with his ability to deliver picture and palate perfect medium rare steak slices to us that literally melted in one's mouth! Chef Kaneko has inspired his teppan team to emulate his skill sets and they all have confidence in their ability to meticulously prepare the teppan dinners to the President Nippon's customers. Teppan lunches are available as well, however, I highly recommend that you treat yourself and loved ones to a special occasion teppanyaki dinner at the President Nippon for their delicious Wagyu beef and lobster meals. You will not be disappointed and will enjoy the performance. Ita dake masu!
Guam Food Guy's Top 10 Reviews for 2014
These lists are useful in providing an easy-to-follow guide of places to try or may have missed, however, they are by nature limited and don't give a full representation of the many excellent options not appearing on the list. These reviews and/or newsletters are listed in chronological order so their placement is not any indication of ranking. I hope you have the opportunity to experience these places and get a chance to enjoy them as I did! This list also gives us some time of looking back over some of the major culinary events that took place in 2014, some of which were ground-breaking!
Guam Diner Bytes November 21, 2014 - Taste of Shanghai, "Akimatsuri" Japan Autumn Festival, MCA Salon Culinaire 2014 Winners, Napu Restaurant, Chesa Guam, Asu Smokehouse, Casa Bonita November 21st, 2014, Volume 14 Number 24 See this newsletter
Guam Diner Bytes November 7, 2014 - Vivian's Restaurant & Coffee Shop, Adios Chef Habib Akbar, Palm Cafe, Silver Oak Wine Dinners Win Raves in Guam & Saipan!, Giovanni's - Hyatt Regency Saipan November 7th, 2014, Volume 14 Number 23 See this newsletter
Guam Diner Bytes October 24, 2014 - Jeff's Pirates Cove, Special Gala Dinner at Feeregalo Euro Dining, Manhattan - The New York City Steakhouse, Islander Terrace Launches A World Of Flavors October 24th, 2014, Volume 14 Number 22 See this newsletter
Guam Diner Bytes July 6, 2014 - 2nd Annual BBQ Block Party, Lotte Hotel Guam Opens, Sushi Ebisu Japanese Moving, Chef Roy Yamaguchi Returns, GAX VII, Pika's Cafe, Avenue Steak & Lobster July 4th, 2014, Volume 14 Number 14 See this newsletter
Guam Diner Bytes June 13, 2014 - Applebee's Getting There!, Maila' Ta Fan Chesa, Tapanade Sangria & Tapas Sunday Breakfast, Hyatt Saipan Wins First Place, King's Restaurant Value Menu June 13th, 2014, Volume 14 Number 12 See this newsletter
Guam Diner Bytes May 9, 2014 - Exotic Enchanting Thailand, Team Sanchez Defends 1st Place Trophy in ProStart National High School Culinary Competition, Hafa Adai Cafe, Bubblicious Sunday Brunch at Prego May 9th, 2014, Volume 14 Number 10 See this newsletter
Guam Diner Bytes April 11, 2014 - Songkran Festival, Kentucky GRILLED Chicken on Saipan?, Tokyo Mart's 40th, Napu Restaurant, Himawari Deli and Bakery , A Taste of Milan, Eggs'n Things Guam April 11th, 2014, Volume 14 Number 8 See this newsletter
Guam Diner Bytes March 14, 2014 - ProStart, Hafa Adai Cafe Now Open, Izakaya Katsu Restaurant, New Italian Chef At Al Dente, King's Lenten Specials, Papa's March 14th, 2014, Volume 14 Number 6 See this newsletter See this newsletter
Guam Diner Bytes January 17, 2014 - House of Brutus, Sabai Thai Spa, The Lemai Cafe and Restaurant, Michelle's Coffee Shop II, Delmonico Kitchen & Bar January 17th, 2014, Volume 14 Number 2 See this newsletter