Foodie Chap: World Wine Guys, Mike DeSimone & Jeff Jenssen
KCBS Foodie Chap Podcast:
Mike DeSimone and Jeff Jenssen, also known as the World Wine Guys, are wine, spirits, food, and travel writers. They are the Entertaining and Lifestyle Editors at Wine Enthusiast Magazine. Their articles and photographs have appeared in Wine Enthusiast, Wine Spectator, and Saveur.
They are the authors of The Fire Island Cookbook, the Port Wine chapter in The Ultimate Wine Companion, the South African Whisky chapter in Barrels and Drams, and Wines Of The Southern Hemisphere: The Complete Guide (Oct 2012). Two books that would make perfect Christmas gifts!
“The best wine that you have is the wine you have with your friends; the wine that has some meaning to you. When you open up that bottle and your with people that you really care about.”
- Mike DeSimone & Jeff Jenssen, Food & Wine Writers
The duo regularly host wine tastings and educational seminars around the world. They are members of the International Food, Wine, and Travel Writers Association, The Society of Wine Educators, and The James Beard Foundation.
Mike and Jeff received the prestigious Golden Pen award for their coverage of Croatia. They have made numerous appearances on The Martha Stewart Show, both television and radio.
I met Mike and Jeff almost a year ago on a wine trip to Inniskillin, Canada. We became instant friends bonding as we picked grapes in below zero temperatures. Moreso our bond was cemented as we shared stories of our mutual love for good food and wine. Their appetite for the “good life” is as big as it gets, always planning their next dinner party, outings to a new restaurant or a winemaker dinner and of course travel adventures. Their zest for life is infectious.
Enjoy my Foodie Chap chat with this brilliant, bright loveable pair.
“Ladies and gentlemen – from New York – the WORLD WINE GUYS”.
Five Tasty Questions with the World Wine Guys
1. A good glass of wine is…?
It’s probably the sparkling wine I have in my glass right now, but in general I think the best wine that you have is the wine you have with your friends; the wine that has some meaning to you. When you open up that bottle and your with people that you really care about. We’re having a great time with you today Liam so I think this is the best glass of wine I could ever have. So, cheers!
2. It’s midnight, I go to your fridge Mike, what will I always find?
You will always find eggs, you will always find an assortment of cheeses, blue cheese, some gouda, some parmesan. You will always find some truffle butter, so you can always whip yourself up a beautiful omelet day or night.3. Aside from your own cookbooks, what cookbook can you not live without?
That’s an easy one. It would be Julia Child’s Menu Cookbook.
4. What dish reminds you of home?
For me, (Mike), that would definitely be rigatoni with red sauce, which some people would call gravy. That was our Sunday dinner; my mothers rigatoni with homemade meatballs, sausage and spare ribs. For me, (Jeff), my mom is a great cook, but as a child growing up I think I really loved her meatloaf. Good old American meatloaf. I think she used to put ketchup on the top of it as a fancy sauce and put it back in the oven, but we were never allowed to have ketchup with it at the table. You know, mom had her rules.
5. Finally guys, last supper; you can have a couple of guests, from the past or present, who would they be, what would you eat and what would you eat?
Definitely it would be a Corton-Charlemagne to begin. I would make polenta and truffle butter, because there’s nothing like it and shave some truffles on top. It would be great with a Corton-Charlemagne. And quite frankly, it’s my last meal, I’m not interested in suddenly making bizarre connections with dead people, so truly we would have our best friends over dinner and some family members.
Penne with Prosciutto and Peas
The Italian word for colander or strainer is scolapasta, which is a shortened version of “drain the pasta.” In the Brooklyn Sicilian dialect of Mike ’s grandparents, this word is pronounced “school-a-bast.” When our Sicilian friend Chiara Planeta heard us use this pronunciation of the word, the only thing she could say was, “Surely, this is a joke.” The joke was really on us, as it was a revelation when we heard the real way that this useful word is spoken. In this recipe, you will use two “school-a-basts”: a small one to thaw the peas, and a larger one for its intended use, draining the pasta.
2 cups frozen peas, thawed (or fresh shelled, if you can find them)
2 tablespoons salt
11/2 pounds penne pasta
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 pound thinly sliced prosciutto, cut or torn into small pieces
1/4 pound Locatelli Romano cheese, grated
Ground black pepper
1. Place the frozen peas in a small colander to thaw and come to room temperature. Place the colander in the sink or over a small plate to catch the dripping water. (If using fresh peas, cook them in boiling water for 2 minutes, drain, and allow to come to room temperature before using. With frozen, let them start thawing when you head to the beach in the morning.)
2. Fill a large, heavy-bottomed pot half to two-thirds with cold water, stir in the salt, cover, and bring to a boil over high heat. Uncover, allow the water to come back to a full, rolling boil, and add the penne and stir. Cook according to the package directions, stirring occasionally. Drain into a large colander and shake the colander to remove excess water from inside the penne. Pour the cooked pasta back into the empty pot. Immediately stir in the oil, peas, and prosciutto. The heat of the pasta will warm the peas and release the flavor of the prosciutto.
3. Serve warm in individual plates or bowls, topped with the Locatelli and pepper.
World Wine Guys www.worldwineguys.com
(Copyright 2012 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services may have contributed to this report.)