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Old July 27, 2008   #1
nctomatoman
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Default Tomatopalooza VI Pictures, Impressions, ...

We are starting to collect links of attendees that posted pics.

Here is one link from Brian Sadler

http://good-times.webshots.com/album/564421755VfKBAR

More to come - my daughter took some great ones, so stay tuned.

Lee, feel free to grab the links for the Tomatopalooza site.

I am just recovering from yesterday - a great day, exhausting, fun, enlightening, perfect weather, people from all over.....will say more once I get my wits about me again!

Thanks to everyone associated with the event for making it another memorable day for all!
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Old July 27, 2008   #2
carolyn137
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I went through the pictures rapidly, and will go back this week and look at the tomatoes, but I always like seeing who I can ID, and of course I saw you, and Sue and Lee, but was Shoe there as well? I thought I saw a Shoe-like body with back side towards the camera.

How I would have loved to have been there or at any of the Tomato Events that are listed in that section of the TV website.

That's OK, though b/c I can wait for Freda to tell me how my plants are doing and I can look out this panel of low windows that face out on the backyard and watch the deer eat my roses.
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Old July 27, 2008   #3
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Had a great time on Sat.
Thanks to Craig, Lee, Patrina, Sue, Jerry, Craig's daughters and others who's names I've forgotten. Great to put faces to the names and meet you guys. Even though I stayed a few hours, (3 1/2), I enjoyed it and won't miss another.
Great site too. Nice people, gardens, and plenty of shade!!

As far as the toms went:
Favorite Dwarves -
1 - Summertime Gold. Great refreshing tomato. Really awakened your taste buds. Not your typical deep taste but 'bright' in taste and color. If that makes any sense.
2 - Tasmaninan Chocolate - Thanks for bringing it Lee. For one you thought you were going to leave home, it was a hit! Darker flavor with great color.
3 - Perth Pride - Most at the table agreed that this was one of the better ones there.
4, 5 - Dinky and Muddy - Two similar looking and tasting toms that I went back for seconds, thirds, forths .....Not the biggest but made up for it in flavor. Love to see the how much fruit comes off the plants.
5b - Grumpy F4 - I know I grew and brought this one but I don't think I'm being bias but it's one that will be grown again in my garden next yeat for sure. Even balance of meat and gel, great dark orange color with a smooth taste. Glad I tried it.

Reg. tomatoes
1 - Shannon's. Bold taste that alot of people loved. Wish I had brought more. Aaaargh!! Beutiful bright red color with a taste that explodes in your mouth. Does not hold flavor back.
2 - Cuostralee. This is my 'Must grow' for next year. This is one of your plain tomato sandwiches tomato. I wouldn't want to mask the flavor with alot of spices or meats. To me, this one needs to be eaten plain. Great solid flavor that lingers. 'Classic' tomato taste that was tough to beat. Nothing shy about it but a very strong, soft in your mouth taste. Not mealy or weak.
3 - Purple Russian - Great balance of deep flavor. Second 'must grow' for next year. Very pretty color.
4 - Heatherington Pink - One of those that caught my eye as well as taste buds. I'm going to look into this one for sure.
5 - Mexico Midgit - How can something so small have sooooo much flavor. About the size of a pea but each one had great tomato taste. I'll look into this one too. Great for the kiddles.

One's that stood out but..
Sun Sugar - The MOST 'burst of flavor' tomato there BUT I think I could only eat a few at a time as they were too sweet for my buds! Little liquid balls of sugar. Each packet of seeds should come with a free dental check-up!!
Cossack Pineapple Crawling Tomatillo - Did I get that right? Little tiny burst of pineapple. I kid you not! Unbelieveable fruity flavor with a flavor I couldn't describe that seemed to 'chase' the pineapple. Novelty or not, I think I have to try this one. No doubt will impress people. My third 'Must grow'

Thanks again Ladies and Gents, and will see you there next year.

Greg
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Old July 27, 2008   #4
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Just a couple of ones I didn't like:
Blue - did nothing for me in taste or looks.
The Greens - First time trying the Greens and will wait until next TP to try them again. Not for me.

Couple of pics of Craig adressing the troops and showing Patrina hard at work! Boy, those two know thier Dwarves!!

Patrina, let me know if you got that half-ripe Shannon's through customs!!

034.jpg

035.jpg

038.jpg
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Old July 27, 2008   #5
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Starting to recover a bit!!! (slept till nearly 9 AM today, which is quite unusual for me).

So, thanks so much to Jimmy and Fred for putting up with the invasion of their little slice of heaven. Thanks to Lee for putting so much energy, enthusiasm, time and planning. Thanks to my family - Sue, Sara, and Caitlin; to my friends old and new - Patrina, Jeff, and Gary (and Sara's friend Allison); to the various Tomatovillians and their families who attended (esp. those who came from afar, such as Jerry and his wonderful wife, Deb; to Greg - those pictures are amazing! - Tim and his wife, a truly supreme slicer/cutter of tomatoes!) - this event has become a bit beyond what Lee and I imagined when we started Tomatopalooza 6 years ago.

Some thoughts on the event....

It takes a bit of time to set up, but I think we got some things right on the organization part of the event (welcome table, contact sheet, renting sufficient tables, creating a Tshirt, etc). Hard to believe that with quite a few of us getting there at 9 or so, we still just about got things ready by 1 PM! And, despite the yellow jacket nest discovered in the morning, no one got stung (great action on ensuring that things were under control prior to the start!).

You can't judge the success of the event until you are about an hour into it....we were concerned we'd have few people, few tomatoes, little food - but it all worked out great in the end. By 2 PM or so the place was hopping, and the day flew by! The weather was just perfect....a great day all around (warm, but a nice breeze, and plenty of shade)

On the tomatoes....just a generally disappointing year for flavors, yields, number of varieties. We've noted for some time that this was a very odd growing season. To me, some of the best flavors came from the Dwarf table (which is great news for the project!). In previous years, we had such an overabunance of tomatoes that we gave them away by the loads after the event. No so this year - bicolors, greens and whites were significantly underrepresented. Blacks and browns as well.....well, maybe everything was a bit underrepresented!

So, for next year....do we move the date? The day (we've had some requests for Sunday, rather than Saturday)? The location certainly works perfectly of course....if Jimmy and Fred will continue to have us, of course!

We certainly missed those Tomatovillians we've had in the past who for various reasons couldn't attend.
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Old July 27, 2008   #6
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Thanks for a wonderful day filled with fine company, good tastings and fun music. As usual Lee, Craig and all the others involved with putting on TomatoPalooza each year did a terrific job. Even Lee’s directions were good. A great big thanks to Fred and Jimmy for their hospitality.

While I tend to agree with Craig that this year's tomatoes didn't taste as good as in previous years, I did manage to eat several White Bread, Mayo and Tomato sandwiches.8) Several people mentioned they thought last year's NC drought may have been a factor in this year's poor taste. It would be interesting to know how many of the fruit at T'Palooza were grown from last year's seed.

Several of the Dwarfs hold great promise. My favorites were in the Purple/Black area. But that’s what I’m partial to in ‘regular’ tomatoes as well. A special thanks to Patrina and Craig for co-coordinating the Dwarf project and to all those who have grown them. I’m looking forward to sampling more of them in the future.
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Old July 27, 2008   #7
Lee
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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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Old July 28, 2008   #8
Fried Okra
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Default Tomatopalooza 6 - a pleasure as always

Thanks to all for making our hosting the event very easy and enjoyable. It was another perfect day, the kind of day that requires pinching to make sure one isn't dreaming. My goal next year: to actually taste some tomatoes! And I still don't have any ripe fruits in my own garden.
It's great to look at all the wonderful photos people are sharing - and how is it that every single person is smiling?
Looking forward to next year.
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Old July 30, 2008   #9
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I'm sorry I missed the event again this year I've only made it once, every other year something comes up at the last minute! I had requests from a pet store and a vet to hand feed 5 different baby birds. (I once had a job at an aviary). There was no way I could travel with an African Grey parrot baby, two tiny cockatiels, and a mourning dove...all on heat and eating formula ((sigh))))

It sounds like a blast and I'll enjoy catching up on the pictures, lists, etc. I'm glad it turned out well for all of you!

Maybe NEXT year!

Jennifer
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Old August 5, 2008   #10
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Default Tomatopalooza Recipe

Dear All,

I thouroghly enjoyed this year's event. One of the highlights for me (besides the tomatoes) was a side dish on the food table. It was a spicy relish with cracked wheat and cherry tomatoes. I would love to get the recipe. Does anyone know if this recipe is posted or who made the dish for Tomatopalooza VI?

Thanks... Brian
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Old August 7, 2008   #11
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Folks, I had a WONDERFUL time at Tomatopalooza meeting people and chatting about the Dwarf Project. After the hot and humid days leading up to the event, it was a welcome relief from the heat to be in such beautiful surroundings and under some shady trees with a nice breeze to keep us cool! It was fantastic to meet people who I've previously interacted with over the internet, and how fascinating to match faces to identities... it really was a great privilege to be able to attend, and kudos to Lee and Craig for their organisation. Efland is a fantastic place to have Tomatopalooza, how lucky to be there!

I didn't take many pics, just individual pics of the dwarf tomatoes, because once the event was underway I just didn't get back to my camera! Thankfully I got someone to take a couple pics with my camera early. Here's a pic of Craig and me, and another of us standing by the table of tomatoes of the Dwarf Project.



Click for larger image



Click for larger image

I want to say a HUGE "THANK YOU" to Craig for taking me in at short notice when I curtailed my time in Europe a little early and just arrived on his doorstep very exhausted! I rested and recovered in such a relaxed environment - Sue and Craig's place is really a haven of both comfort and delights. He has the most wonderful environment there to enjoy nature, the garden, birds and bees, play with the gorgeous chocolate labs... I just soaked it all in for 9 awesome days! It was such a pleasure to meet Sue and the girls too - I LOVE this family!!

Wonderful to meet Lee (who I got to know a little because we had several meetings during that week), Jeff (who stayed at Craig's for the weekend and we had good chats), Greg, Jerry, Celticman (whose real name I have temporarily forgotten), Paul, and spouses, plus other new folks - forgive me if I've left out names, I remember all your faces!! I was hoping to see a few other folks there too, but sadly for whatever reason they didn't make it this time.

Patrina
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Old August 8, 2008   #12
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Way to make the tomato voyage Patrina.

Hopefully you smuggled some tomato seeds back in your shoe.
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Old August 9, 2008   #13
Patrina_Pepperina
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Quote:
Originally Posted by feraltomatoes View Post
Way to make the tomato voyage Patrina.

Hopefully you smuggled some tomato seeds back in your shoe.
If only... Brad! Too naive, thinking that it was better to post them, HA!

Patrina
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