CONTRIBUTED BY MONETTE EAMES
Coming to Roguii is an experience in and of itself. The building is an old base-style home, but made into a friendly, cozy place with a relaxed atmosphere. On the walls and shelves are different knick-knacks from around the world and some of them are even for sale. Mismatched furniture, possibly from the base flea markets, somehow all fit together here at Roguii. A display is dedicated to local events, including music concerts or cultural exhibitions. Roguii has exotic and tasty cuisine, and with this homey place, it really combines for a trendy, friendly and warm feeling. Aromas from Greece, maybe Turkey and of course Japan fill the air along with the scents of freshly baked bread and bakery treats, which are also for sale.
The two girl workers, maybe sisters, flutter around the kitchen, in and out. We later learned that they always wear hats as part of the feel of the place, and today they are wearing beanies. They are the chefs, the cashiers, the hostesses and the servers. I guess that’s how things are when it’s just you and the other person running a cafe that can seat about 40. But you wouldn’t be able to tell that from what they put together – it is delicious, and the café is well-run, clean and has just the right feel to help you enjoy your meal.
They usually only have four or five things written up on the menu–fish, chicken, curry, and a sandwich. This time, we enjoyed the fish, curry, and chicken dishes. The fresh tuna was perfectly fried tempura style. It had some kind of relish that had bits of corn, pickles, and some mayo. I’m sure there were more ingredients, but whatever it was, it was delicious. The chicken was a version of chicken katsu with a fresh tomato sauce. The curry was a vegetable curry–somewhat Thai, somewhat Japanese. All the main dishes were delicious. With sides being a lentil onion mix, a salad, some type of Japanese root, and onion soup, we were all stuffed by the end of our meal. Bread, rice, or brown rice and a drink also came with our meals.
Our family has really enjoyed this place. The first time we came here, it was for date night in the pouring rain. One of the ladies walked us out with an umbrella when our date was over. The next time we visited, we came with the kids and Grandpa, who was visiting from New York. Grandpa really enjoyed the food! The room they put the whole family in was perfect. It had a little play area with a tent and blocks and toys for the kids. On the other side were some Japanese books—a few translated from the English versions. Our kids did not want to go, they really enjoyed the tent! When we were ready to leave at the end of the meal, one of the ladies walked us out again. Both times, it felt like we were visiting an old friend. This is definitely one of our favorite places to eat, and we hope you enjoy it too!
Hours: Wednesday-Saturday 12:00-22:00, Sunday 12:00- 17:00
Directions: From Foster Legion gate, turn LEFT on 330 and continue along until you reach 85 (across from plaza housing). Turn right on 85 and go downhill, passing through one stoplight. On the way down the hill, you will see an overpass with a small access road on the right just before the bridge. The entry is small, so be careful not to miss it. Take a right on that road and continue to the top of the hill. At the top, take a right, and head almost all the way down the hill, Rogui will be on the right in a little white old-base construction house. Parking is either in the little cutout parking, or behind the building. If you reach the stop sign at the bottom of the hill, you’ve gone too far.
This post was featured in Stripes Okinawa!