Sam On Celebrity Wine Roundtable Wine Enthusiast article & video
Posted 07 August 2012 - 10:56 AM
Published on Aug 6, 2012
By Susan Kostrzewa
What happens when an actress, a rock star, a Broadway producer and a star tattoo artist convene for a blind tasting of wines as distinctive and eclectic as they are?
What they tasted
Domaine Sigalas 2010 Assyrtiko (Santorini): “The crispness and balance of this wine is exactly what I like. I can imagine pairing this with a lot of different dishes.” —S.F.
Sam Fogarino, Drummer for Interpol
Athens, Georgia-based Fogarino is the drummer for the alternative rock band Interpol and has toured extensively with them since 2000. Prior to joining Interpol, he performed with various other notable rock acts for a decade. In 2007, Fogarino formed the band Magnetic Morning with former Swervedriver frontman Adam Franklin.
W.E.: How did you get into wine?
SF: Being that I have an Italian background, wine has always been around. The first time I was really told what wine was, aside from it being the blood of Christ, was from my grandmother, who made her own wine moonshine. Also, my girlfriend—now wife—was drinking a lot of wine when we met about 10 years ago. She introduced me to people like Mario Batali, then along the way I met Joe [Campanale] years later, and our mutual friend Mike Diamond [from the Beastie Boys], who is an avid wine enthusiast.
W.E.: Have you been exposed to great wine via your touring and work?
SF: Yes. It’s amazing when you open your eyes to it—it’s right there. I was trying a local white wine in Lubiana in Eastern Europe and I could have just downed the whole bottle, it was so succulent and delicious. It’s really cool when you go to these little nooks and crannies that are not really on the world map and then you try their wines. I also learned by listening to people who really knew wine.
W.E.: Do you have a favorite wine-and-food pairing?
SF: I gravitate more towards white as a goto. I’ll cook a simple pasta pomodoro (get Fogarino’s Tomato Basil sauce recipe below) and find a really dry white that’s not too citrusy, so it does not compete with the acidity of the tomato sauce, and that’s fine. That works really well. But it doesn’t need to be overthought. Understanding basic guidelines is the main thing. We’re not all going to be sommeliers.
W.E.: Do you consider winemaking an art?
SF: Oh, definitely. It goes back to the Old World idea, which I learned from my Sicilian grandmother…you use your tongue, your soul, your eyes and your ears. It becomes a very artful approach to making great wine. There is a science and alchemy of sorts to it.
Fogarino’s favorite wine of the tasting: Domaine Sigalas 2010 Assyrtiko (Santorini); W.E. recommends Fogarino try: As Laxas 2011 Albariño (Rías Baixas).
Tomato Sauce with Basil
Courtesy Sam Fogarino, Drummer for Interpol
"This is a very simple, traditional tomato sauce—just basil; no garlic, onions, oregano, none of that," says Fogarino. "And it calls for plum tomatoes, which are small, so if the tomatoes you get are larger than plum size, you might want fewer of them, or adjust your other ingredients accordingly. I’m a believer in the 'old world grandma method'—eyes & tongue, these are the finest tools of measurement."
24 tomatoes, preferably plum, heirloom or vine-ripened
¾ cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 bunches basil leaves (approximately 4 cups, loose), divided
2 tablespoons tomato paste
Sea salt (fine) and black pepper, to taste.
1 pound pasta
Preheat oven to 250°F.
Roughly chop half of the basil, retaining the rest as whole leaves. Rinse and dry tomatoes, then cut each in half from top to bottom, removing pit. Liberally grease a large rimmed baking sheet with a few tablespoons of the olive oil, and place the halved tomatoes in a single layer, skin side up. Place the sheet on center rack of the oven and let roast for up to 4 hours, checking frequently to make sure they do not overcook and shrivel. (Alternative superfast “ristorante” method: Preheat broiler. Prepare tomatoes as before and place under broiler for 10 to 15 minutes, rotating cookie sheet to avoid uneven browning of tomato skins.) When the skins have wrinkled, turning a slight reddish-brown, they are done.
Using tongs, remove the skins. They should come off with ease. If a portion of the skin is not sliding off but rather ripping apart from the rest, place tomatoes back in broiler or oven for an additional 3-4 minutes, or until skin is easily removed from fruit.
Pour tomatoes and drippings from baking sheet into a deep, large frying pan on low heat. With a knife, fork or utensil of choice, break down the halved tomatoes. (Alternatives: prior to placing in frying pan, chop by hand or macerate roasted tomatoes in a blender or food processor.) Stir in tomato paste, sea salt, pepper, and whole basil leaves. Add remaining olive oil—drizzle in a bit at a time and taste until olive oil is a subtle “undertaste” to the pure tomato flavor. Continue to reduce over low heat for roughly 10–15 minutes, stirring every few minutes.
Remove as many whole basil leaves as possible, and quickly stir in chopped basil.
Boil pasta until al dente, place in bowls and ladle sauce. Serves 4–6.
Posted 07 August 2012 - 11:01 AM
And his famous pasta recipe to accompany wine ^_^
"if I wanted to be an overtly flirtatious man and I wasn't married... I would say in the bedroom" ;)