If you’ve been following this blog, you might know that I have a passion for tomatoes. One that borders on obsession and yes, today’s post is yet another ode to the love apple.
We had a tomato workshop last Friday, one that brought 45 Colorado Master Gardeners out to Loveland to learn fall tips for growing and harvesting, plus a bit on how to preserve them. Politely the crowd listened to the history, varieties and uses of the tasty fruit, but throughout the two-hour lesson, their attention was somewhere else.
It was on the tables of tomatoes just to the south, filled end to end with 52 varieties of lovely love apples waiting quietly for tasting. They were shiny. They were juicy. And when the crowd was finally given permission to go forth and stuff themselves, a few of the contenders rose to the top as favorites amongst the crew.
Everyone was asked to rate the tomatoes on taste, texture, color, and any other criteria that mattered to the person sampling.
We tasted blindly – the varieties weren’t identified – then voted on our favorites in each of the four classes: cherry, salad slicers, pasting/canning, and beefsteak. Two of the top vote getters are no surprise; these tomatoes sweep the competition whenever they compete. Brandywine and Amish Paste are truly tops in their class.
Others delighted everyone who tried them, such as Aunt Ruby’s Green, a slicer with a bright, green flavor. Here’s the list of top three in each group, in case you’d like to grow them next year.
If you do, or if you have a tomato you think is tasty, we’ll hold this workshop again next fall, and let anyone who’s interested take part (this was the first time we did this, so tried it out on our MGs).
First – Amish Paste
Second – La Roma II
Third (tie) – Grushovka and Goldman’s Italian American
First – Green Doctors
Second – Sungold
Third – Sugar snack
First – Aunt Ruby’s Green
Second – Rose De Berne
Third – Black Zebra
First – Brandywine
Second – Gold Medal
Third – Aunt Ginny’s Purple