Guam Diner Bytes: Menya Sanji Guam
Menya Sanji has recently opened up for business in the location formerly occupied by Gyoza Yatai. Menya, or “Sanji Ramen” is part of a franchise with a well-developed menu and service concept. The ambiance is Japanese modern with large framed paintings of warriors. The seating is comfortable and they have plenty of room inside with some tables outside on the balcony. The view overlooking Tumon is awesome.
There grand opening was Dec. 15. I think they will do well here since locals like ramen and Sanji has a varied selection of ramen combinations along with entrees that complement their main ramen dishes. They even had “tsukemen,” which has the ramen noodles served separately from the broth. This is “dipping” ramen, where you just dip the amount of noodles you need into the soup. I’ve not done this so I’m looking forward to try this.
Sanji makes their noodles fresh. If you need extra noodles with your order, they are available at no charge. I opted for the Sanji Ramen ($7.95) which has a pork base with soy sauce taste. This had a couple of thick slices of grilled tender pork belly, along with half a boiled egg, sliced green onions, and seasoned bamboo shoots. The grilled pork gives the meat a barbecued appearance, making it more appealing.
I wanted to try other items on the menu so I ordered the Karage Set ($4.95) and the Gyoza Set ($4.95). These are actually add-ons to the main ramen entree and each comes with a salad. The salad is a very refined cole slaw (chopped finer and very fresh tasting) with corn. The fried “karage” chicken is crisp and not greasy. I wanted a little more flavor, and got it making a little finadene. The gyoza are grilled and pretty good. I also ordered some kimchee ($2.95) to get some more variety.
Sanji has “oden” side dishes as a dining option, with 6 varieties. You can use deep fried burdock, Japanese radish, boiled fish, a tubular roll of boiled fish paste and more. For dessert, there is almond pudding and an Italian specialty called “catalana.” It is a creme brulee served chilled on a cake with fresh whipped cream and blueberry sauce. It’s a very appealing and surprisingly refreshing dessert. For just opening, Sanji is doing quite well and the staff is courteous and attentive. I will definitely return.