Guam Diner Bytes: Street Rotary Treats
It had been a while since I visited 9th Street Rotary. In fact, I had to drive by to make sure I could locate it, especially at night when it is dark in Agana. I didn’t realize it but the bike shop that used to front the curved building housing 9th Street is gone! While I had only eaten lunch at 9th Street Rotary, I found the night time dining more pleasurable since I could relax, enjoy some Asahi while eating the fabulous food that is magically prepared in the open kitchen. I don’t know if it was just the Wednesday night music selection, but they had played a lot of BEATLE’S music so I found myself singing along between bites!
We sat at a table along the window and had a view showing us the complete restaurant, from the kitchen to the rotary sushi track counter, to the other dining room section near the entrance. We could have sat at the counter, but I prefer the table for space and ordering a la carte dishes. 9th Street Rotary has a menu with sushi rolls you can order on one side and a variety of other items including salads, wraps, and “dons” (donburi’s - rice bowls) on the back side. I had been craving the Aburi Salmon Nigiri ($8.00) and these came out first! There are four pieces on a plate - I especially like these because they spare the use of rice in their sushi rolls. This fatty salmon belly has been brushed with butter and topped with green onions. These just deliciously melt in your mouth with every bite!
The next roll we ordered was the Lalalu (Angry) Tuna Gunkan ($8.00). This one is also good, since there is a bit of coconut dinanche on the top (“gunkan” refers to the type of sushi-”battle ship” shape and image). This was enjoyably pika and went down fairly quickly too.
We had also ordered one of the dons - the KFC half ($9. The KFC is Korean Fried Chicken and it has that gojuchang pika thing going on with it giving it a bit of heat and spicy flavor. The Koreans do chicken right!! All dons come with your choice of Asian Salad, Mac Salad, or Kimchi. We had kimchi. Again, we were brought rice that we ate sparingly - no need to fill up on that starch!!
Ninth Street has a Special menu board with several featured specials not on the menu. I was intrigued by the Misoyaki Parrotfish ($16.95) that had Miso marinated parrot fish topped with green onions, red radish and served with a side of rice. Great choice! This was really tasty! The thick white filet of the parrotfish could not have been cooked any better. The sauce was so flavorful that I even put a little rice in it to spoon up. The fish had been broiled so it had caramelized areas that were concentrated flavor points. This was definitely something we’d eat again!
Finally, we ended with a dessert - a Chocolate Bombe ($7.95), which is one of their house desserts made different ways. This one had fresh dragonfruit sorbet...so intensely and richly flavored . This is one of those you eat with your eyes first then go for the bite...the bites don’t stop til it’s gone! This wonderful experience is the work of Chef/owner Mark Duenas and his team. These young culinary visionaries have put it all on the line and have built up a steady loyal following!
Go get Wowed at 9th Street Rotary in Hagatna! You’ll be as pleased as me!!