EagleTribune.com, North Andover, MA


September 13, 2013

Together again, but behind the stove

Gloucester classmates show off chef skills at revamped Foreign Affairs


Other local favorites found within the bold red, black and white Foreign Affairs interior ‚ Sasquatch smoked fish, one of Cape Ann’s best foodie secrets. Sasquatch, aka Paul Cohan, smokes his own high quality salmon, cod, and mussels in a building behind the Gloucester Daily Times offices. A Lanesville neighbor of Collins, “Squatch” offers Foreign Affairs the prized, hard-to-find, Sasquatch-smoked scallops for some of its dishes. Another Lanesville native, Celia Gibson of Celia’s Flowers, brings her young, contemporary flower style to the Foreign Affairs tables.

Back to that burger: Wagyu beef is a Japanese-style beef with fine marbling; it’s higher in omega 3’s and lower in saturated fat than most commercial beef. The Foreign Affairs version towers with sauteed onions, wild mushrooms, spicy kimchee, cool avocado, sriracha aioli, and crackling wontons, all on a Virgilio’s St. Joseph’s roll, which, Collins explained, is perfect because the crossed top allows the roll to fan the burger better; it better releases the burger with each bite. Some local burger.

It may be the perfect symbol of these two Gloucester kids’ reunion in a restaurant kitchen: very smart, a little local, that kimchee the mark of an enfant terrible. Matt Rose, in a “what the hell” kind of wine pairing moment, recommends the Riesling, Paul Cluver estate 2010, with this almost impossible to pair burger. (That kimchee! That sriracha aioli!) Riesling is the most versatile and food friendly wine around, Rose says, but adds that the sweetness of the Dolcetta D’Alba, Beni di Batasiolo 2011, would complement this burger-deliciousness, too.

On contests: Collins may be known as only taking third place on “MasterChef,” but in Mrs. Klopotoski’s 1989 class he won the Valentine’s Day contest. The prize: dinner for his family at Twin Lights Manor. There is a photo circulating online of Collins beaming, holding his winning Valentine, while the rest of the class, including Papows, glares.

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