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Old July 27, 2008   #7
Lee
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: NC-Zone 7
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More pictures on the web site at http://tomatopalooza.org/

What a great day we had out at the farm!

It was great to see a lot of familiar, friendly faces. Jerry, Tim, Jim, Rock, Greg, and others.
Also, it was nice to meet Jeff and Patrina as well as Craig's former co-worker Gary.

One of the great things about this event was the tremendous amount of support Craig and I had this
year. From Sue, Caitlin, and Sara assisting with much of the organization and greeting table to all of
those who jumped in and supported the presentation & cutting of the maters. And of course Jimmy &
Fred for hosting the event again this year. Thanks so much!

The weather was great! High 80s, slightly overcast, with a pleasant breeze.
The numbers were phenomenal. From the emails and posts about the event, I thought it would be
just Craig and I! However, I think this was our largest attendance yet. We had around 150~200
people from 4 continents! Yes I said contenents! Australia, Asia, Europe, and N. America.
Everyone seemes to have a great time viewing, learning, tasting, and talking tomatoes all afternoon.

As Craig mentioned, the tomatoes were a little off this year.
138 varieties were represented, the lowest number since 2003.
All colors were very under represented at the event. The greens and blacks being the most strikingly
absent. However, we did have a large assortment of the bi-colors this year!.
Of the varieties present, many had what was described as a diluted taste. While, some represented
varieties were under/over ripe, there were quite a few that just didn't taste up to normal standards.
Cuostralee was the main standout for me. Usually a very full flavored tomato. The one I tasted was
just OK.... Others though were quite good.
Spear's Tennessee Green was excellent again as was Purple Haze which Greg brought.
One of the Anna Banana Russians was quite fruity in flavor! Yumo!
Striped Sweetheart (a new variety this year) was also well received.

We did have a vote on best tasting:
The best tasting as voted by the 8 people who actually turned in their talley sheets was.....

#1 Spear's Tennessee Green / Cossack Pineapple / Sungold F1
#2 Purple Haze / Shannon's
#3 Cuostralee

There were a lot tied for #4!

Also, we weighed in the monsters for the biggest competion:
Kellogg's Breakfast from JimM_SC won the biggest competition at 22oz!
A Hugh's and Kosovo came in a close second at 20oz.

I suspect the high 90s/100s temps we had from the end of May to mid-June really effected the
numbers of varieties that we had. I know many in my dad's garden were a good week+ from
ripening.

Finally, I should say something about the dwarf tables. There were a ton of "new" varieties that were
represented at the tasting. Craig and Patrina had a blast going over each of them and sampling a
number of F1,F2,F3,F4, and even F5s in the mix. All colors, shapes and sizes were there and many people
were asking when/where they could get these new varieties!
The odd thing for me was that the Tasmanian Chocolate F4 that I was not thrilled with got rave reviews
from everyone. I guess the later fruit have become better tasting than my initial samplings.
Also, the Dreamy F2 that I initially described as sour, was sampling well among many folks. It did have
a better flavor than before, so now I've got two of those to carry on.


All and all a very enjoyable day!


Lee
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Intelligence is knowing a tomato is a fruit.
Wisdom is knowing not to put one in a fruit salad.

Cuostralee - The best thing on sliced bread.
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