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Fred Hempel June 18, 2011 10:41 AM

NORCATT 2011 in Sunol
I am seriously thinking about hosting a NORCATT event this year. It would be in Sunol, and we could give farm tours before, and/or after the event.

Please respond here if you are interested.

The event would be in early September -- which is our peak tomato harvest.

sprtsguy76 June 18, 2011 11:16 AM

I'm down!!!


rnewste June 18, 2011 02:24 PM

I'm in!!!

Will bring a few "unique" ones to the tasting:

- Brandywine from Croatia (RL)
- Brandie-wine from Croatia (PL) the "mystery plant"
- Soren's Marianna's Peace x Neves Azorean Red F1
- N.A.R.X.
- Ed's Millennium
- and several of the Wild Boar Farms varieties. well as a few bottles of Beringers While Zinfandel.:love:


p.s. Fred, can you set a specific date as soon as possible so I can work my other travel plans around this date?

habitat_gardener June 18, 2011 05:58 PM

Me too! if they produce, I may have
Joanna Croatia
Maska's Favorite
Cour di Albegnia
Cour di Bue
which I got at a local sale of saved-seed varieties.

JoAnne June 19, 2011 02:32 AM

If the dates work out, I'll be there and can bring whatever is interesting that is ripe at the time. - JoAnne

Fred Hempel June 19, 2011 09:16 AM

I just talked to the folks at the event center in our little town -- and this is what works for me and them:

Friday September 9th
Sunol Jazz Cafe and Event Center
Beer, Wine, Tea, Coffee, Soft Drinks and Sandwiches Available

Sunol is east of Fremont, south of Pleasanton and west of Livermore.

Does this work for everyone else?

rnewste June 19, 2011 12:59 PM


Most of these tomato-tasting events around the Country are held on a Saturday to sample tomatoes, etc. As in the Bay area, distances are rather large (not that they aren't in Texas!), if we are to have folks from Sacramento, San Francisco, Marin, and the South Bay participate, I think setting the event on Saturday, September 10 would work out better. Trying to do this on a Friday night - with rush-hour traffic etc. is not ideal for most folks.

Again, we don't need a lot of hoopla - - just a shelter from the Sun and some tables to spread out the tomatoes (and wine). I for one, would really like to tour your operation in the daylight before, or after the tomato tasting. Of course, this all depends on your personal schedule, as you have generously offered to host this NORCATT event. Some of us will arrive early to help set up a tent, or other facility - - and do the clean-up after the event.


sprtsguy76 June 19, 2011 01:05 PM

I agree with Ray on this one, Saturday or even Sunday is much better. Can I do a Friday? Yes no problem but I think the attendance will suffer greatly if its Friday. Fred can we do better than a Friday even if it means later in the month?


Fred Hempel June 21, 2011 04:29 PM

Here is the problem for me.

Sunday = Farmers' Market

Saturday = Our farm site is closed to public. The farm is owned by the City of San Francisco, and is on an area that is closed and secured on weekends. I would have to get permits, and have a monitor at the gate. And, the bigger the attendance, the more restrictive things are. If a bunch of people wanted to come at the last minute, they would not be allowed to, as large groups require a month's notice and a formal proposal and site fee payment.

Friday = my best alternative. The farm site (the Sunol Water Temple area) is open from 9-3 so anyone from tomatoville that wants a farm tour can come at any time between 9 and 3. If you are there at 3PM, you may stay as my guest on the farm area after 3PM and we will all leave together at 5PM to set up the tasting one-half mile away in town. This is really my only alternative.

Of course, I will attempt to attend any other tasting set up elsewhere under conditions deemed to be more amenable to the group!

sprtsguy76 June 21, 2011 07:27 PM

I dont think the location is the big issue (allthough it would be very nice to tour Fred's farm and the Jazz Cafe is a nice little joint), you can set up a tasting just about anywhere. And I dont for see this being a huge attendance thing if its just Tomatoville invites. I'm ok with Friday I'd just hate for us to get no one or very few attending because of the day/time. Fred are you extending invites through any other source besides TV? I guess we should take a count on who would be willing to come on that day and go from there.


JoAnne June 22, 2011 02:10 AM

Hey - I'm an example (maybe the only one?) of someone who may not be able to attend on a Friday night. Normally, I'm at work until 6:30-7:00 PM and DH doesn't cut out until 7:30. Given Bay Area traffic (at rush hour on a Friday night), I assume we'd have to leave somewhere in the neighborhood of 4 PM. That may or may not be doable, depending on what is happening at work that day. Sometimes I can leave work early, sometimes I'm just there until it's done.

Bottom line: Friday night is difficult.


rnewste June 22, 2011 01:25 PM

I was not aware of the City restrictions on Fred's garden plot (no Saturday access).

Heading over 237, then up 880 to 680 is a bad commute ANYTIME of the day. Friday evening when folks are going to Tahoe, etc. is a really bad commute.:no:


MJACTIVIST June 22, 2011 02:30 PM

Yea I work also on Fridays, so it will be extra hard to attend. Sucks wish I could be there. Hope it works out great for you Fred.

Fred Hempel June 22, 2011 03:38 PM

I understand the limitations, and I wish I was able to hold an "open" event on Saturday where people could come and go.

I am going to hold the event described above on Friday September 9th. It will be an open event, and guests will be encouraged to bring their tomatoes. I will post it on our blog, and it will be open to non-tomatovillians.

If another option arises that is more suitable to the needs of everyone that event should be the 2011 NORCATT event, and my event will be simply a Baia Nicchia-hosted tomato tasting event.

sprtsguy76 June 22, 2011 06:06 PM

I understand Fred totally, count me in I will be there. I hope to see everybody there who can make it. Fred let me know if I can help with anything. I might be able to talk my wife into assembling a dessert platter or two.


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