In the words of Britney Spears- “Oops, I did it again!” I had to go back and experience yet again the Kitchen Counter at Al Dente located in the Hyatt Regency Guam. This time around, my husband and I brought along his twin and our stepdaughter. The game changer was a the chef switch up. Along with Chef Cristiano Pozzi who we saw in action the first time was Chef Tony Lee who specializes in Korean and French cuisine. Can I just say that at $70 per person, I feel like I am robbing them? Do the math. 2 amazing and talented chefs, 5 courses each, 3 wines, and coffee to close out the evening!?
Kitchen Counter is every Thursday and is limited to 6-8 people. There is no set menu. You are at the Chef’s mercy. They prepare each dish in front of you. You are encouraged to ask questions….The best way to describe it? It’s like you are watching an artist paint a mural and you get to witness every stroke and ask why he chose that color or what inspired him to paint that piece.
The meal started out with a goat cheese souffle’ with a drizzle of honey from Chef Cristiano and a salmon ceviche’ topped with lobster intestines and arugala from Chef Tony. With the ceviche’, you could really see Chef Tony’s French background shine. I loved it. the arugala added that kick of bitterness to break through the acidity of the lemon and sweetness of the salmon.
Next was the soup course. Chef Tony did a savory mushroom truffle soup with cremini and shitake mushrooms topped with a buttery puff pastry.Chef Cristiano presented an incredible barley soup. This was a cup full of comfort—the textures were mindblowing and the pop of panchetta provided that salty smokiness. I could eat a whole pot of that….in one sitting. No lie. It was that good!
The next course consisted of a delightful risotto with local zucchini and salmon roe and this piece of flaky sea bass that was steamed in a meringue like concoction.
The main course was a surf and turf. Chef Tony served up a delish angus beef ribeye with a surprise in the middle— foie gras. Holy *&%! The meat was so juicy and tender. I did not need a knife for it. It was paired perfectly with a Merlot. Chef Cristiano’s ‘surf’ was a lovely cobia filet poached in a pouch with vegetables. A simple yet beautiful dish.
Capping off the meal was a perfect plate of desserts. Not overly sweet…a great way to end a memorable dinner. Paired along with the dish was a nice subtle dessert wine.
I can tell you this, if you are a big fan of the Netflix series “Chef’s Table” which by the way, I can’t wait for the second season to come out…or you a fancy a culinary adventure, then Kitchen Counter is for you. Reservations are a must! You can call Hyatt Regency Guam at 671-647-1234 and make sure to follow their page on IG under @hyattguam.