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Member discussion regarding the methods, varieties and merits of growing tomatoes.

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Old September 16, 2017   #1
Nan_PA_6b
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Default Tasting Tomatoes

My mother, DH, and I attended the CHOPTAG tomato tasting at the end of August. It was our first such event. DH has never met a tomato he didn't like, so his report would be that all tasted good.

My mother came away from the tasting more convince than ever that nothing beats her Big Beefs and Early Girls.

I have trouple tasting tomatoes; literally, my taste buds taste them differently from other people. Carolyn is fond of saying there's a genetic component to tastebuds, so everyone tastes tomatoes differently, and boy is it true in my case. In spades. Many of them I can barely taste at all. So here is what my wierd tastebuds said:

The Good:

Big Brandy F1 Good.
Chocolate Cherry Good, no tang.
Dester Good, sweet & tangy.
Dotson's Lebanese Heart Good, would be good fried green(?)
Dr. Carolyn's Good. Sweet and tart
Golden Green Good, tart & sweet.
Green Bomb Good, tastes a little fried-greeny.
Hardin's Miniature Good, very flavorful, not especially sweet.
Hillbilly Good.
Lucky Tiger Good. Sweet with a bit of tang.
Post Office Spoonful Good, like a full sized tomato.
Rosella Good, very good.
Sungold F1 Good, lots of flavor, sweet, tart, everything.

The Bland:

Andrew Rahart's
Bela
Ben's Ivory Pear
Bulgarian Oxheart
Carbon
Bland but smokey
Chef's Choice Orange
Chocolate Stripe
Bland but OK
Cuor di Bue Bland but good (Not sure what I meant here).
Dwarf Mr. Snow
Dwarf Rosella Crimson
Gardener's Choice
George Detsikas Italian Red
Green Pear Cherry
Japanese Trifele Black
Moonshiner's Ball
Morado Vejer de la Frontera
Orange Strawberry
Park's Whopper CR Improved F1

Pepe Jose (one of two, I guess)
Piker Vesy
Bland but tomatoey
Rebecca Allen Bland but good (again, puzzling, oxymoronic).
Sandberg

The UGH-ly

Blue Cream
Cherokee Purple
Little Willie's Wiener
Tarasenko Hybrid


Everything else:

Campari acid only.
Captain Lucky Tart-ish
Faworyt Sharp, strong, OK
Lucid Gem Tart.
Matt's Wild Cherry Sweet & tangy but not tomatoey
Mountain Glory Tart only.
Pepe Jose Sweet & tomatoey (again, one of two?).
Red Brandymaster No sweet.
sunrise Bumblebee OK, not great
Upstate Mild & sweet
Wagner Blue Green Sweet & tangy (but for some reason, I didn't say good).
Yellow Fire Sweet & mild.

I'm grateful when I can taste a tomato at all. I will probably attend every tasting I can. It's invaluable to find out which ones I'll be able to taste if I grow them.

Nan
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Old September 18, 2017   #2
zipcode
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How are these tastings usually conducted? Like how much do you get to eat? And is there salt available (I suppose you could bring yourself)? Since I eat my tomatoes with other food there is little relevance for me how they would taste without salt. I find that to taste good without salt it needs a certain amount of sweetness otherwise it will seem bland for example, even though it may taste awesome with it.
One normally can assess the otherwise very important aroma just based on smell, and more often than not its strength also, when a cut tomato smells really good, it always tastes good too to me.
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Old September 18, 2017   #3
Nan_PA_6b
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Zipcode, tomato tastings are great!

First, the host/hostess invites people to the tasting. Those who grow tomatoes are encouraged to bring some of whatever is ripe. There were well over 50 varieties at the relatively small CHOPTAG tasting.

People may also bring food; there ought to at least be a palate cleanser such as crackers. Many times there's food enough for whole meals. Host ought to provide at least water.

Each variety of tomato from each garden gets its own paper plate. The variety name is written on the plate. A medium-sized tomato would be enough for a small tasting. Larger gatherings would require more. (If all you have is a small tomato, I guess you'd cut it into smaller pieces.) Tomatoes are cut or sliced or chunked into bite-sized or larger pieces. Cherry tomatoes are not cut, but piled on the plate.

Guests sample whatever tomatoes they like. Unless there's some very limited supply, I suppose nobody cares if you take more than one chunk of each.

Salt and pepper are usually provided, but you could always bring your own since it's important to you. Each guest samples whichever tomatoes he or she chooses. You eat them however you like; I suppose you could bring bread, mayonnaise or maple syrup if you wished. You're probably not alone in wanting to salt them.

Sometimes guests are asked to rate the tomatoes, or vote on them to determine the best-tasting consensus. There can be other contests, such as biggest, ugliest, prettiest tomato, etc.

Tomato growers who discover a good-tasting, new-to-them tomato, will want seeds. (Zip-close plastic bags may be provided but it's good to be prepared with your own.) Chunks of the tomato on the plate will be taken home by those who want the seeds.

The host/hostess is left with a ton of cut-up tomatoes (payment for hosting?) good food, and memories.

From CHOPTAG 2017:
20170827_140407_resized.jpg

A few more pictures of CHOPTAG 2017:
http://www.tomatoville.com/showthread.php?t=45922

Nan
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Old September 18, 2017   #4
MdTNGrdner
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Nan, thanks for that great description! I have never been to one of these either.
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Old September 19, 2017   #5
Nan_PA_6b
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This was my first & I can't wait till next year!

Nan
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Old September 21, 2017   #6
JRinPA
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Interesting. I have only grown two of those, Sungold and Cherokee Purple. Here, Sungold were okay this year, but the usual splits. Cherokee Purple were good and tomato sandwich stars, but not as good as last year.
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Old September 21, 2017   #7
Nan_PA_6b
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My Sungolds are splitting like mad now, but early on they were fine.

Nan
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Old September 21, 2017   #8
Worth1
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I went to the tomato tasting we had in Texas once and only tried one tomato and dont remember what it was.
But I did help set up everything and put it away afterwards.
Fact of the matter or we shall say mater was I had already tried all of them anyway before and after.

What I cant understand is why mortgage lifter or orange Russian wasn't at your tasting.
For that matter NAR.
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Old September 21, 2017   #9
Nan_PA_6b
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Well, it was a rather small gathering.

Nan
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Old September 21, 2017   #10
creeker
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nan_PA_6b View Post
My Sungolds are splitting like mad now, but early on they were fine.

Nan
Try Sunsugar, they don't split.
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