26th Annual Tomato Dinners
Tuesday through Friday, September 13-16, 2016
The late date for this year’s Tomato Dinners (we sometimes hold the event in August) is a result of 2016’s having been a bit cooler than normal. Chef Jonah says that the same moderate weather that made for our best beef ever, has caused a slightly late ripening date for certain varieties of northern California’s tomatoes (not that we haven’t had fabulous dry-farmed Early Girls and terrific Sungolds and cherries already).
Solanum lycopersicum – our beloved tomato, an edible nightshade berry which grows on a vine – has a long, complicated history. The subject of much debate since the Spanish found tomatoes being cultivated in southern Mexico (after having been brought from the Andes where they first grew, tiny and wild), it took the tomato centuries to be eaten widely in Europe as they were assumed to be poisonous. But over the years the tomato has become ubiquitous in myriad cuisines, and now, oddly, the world’s greatest producer of tomatoes is, by far, China.
As Chef Jonah Rhodehamel finds out which tomatoes, specifically, will be among those he chooses for our event, we’ll post particulars about our menu offerings on the Oliveto website.