They’re ba-ack! The summer food festival season is in full swing and one of my favorite festivals from last year is coming back around again. Last year was the inaugural Attack of the Killer Tomato festival. All proceeds benefit Georgia Organics, a non-profit organization whose mission is to working towards integrating healthy, sustainable and locally grown food into the lives of all Georgians.
Chef Ford Fry and JCT Kitchen & Bar is returning as host of the event, and featured chefs will be paired with a local farmer to create a tomato dish to prepare as samples for the crowd. Mixologists will also be whipping up their own signature cocktails. We’re not talking BLT’s and bloody marys here.
A few dishes from last year — Hector Santiago’s heirloom tomatoes “ceviche” with silken cuajada de cabra & puffed grains, Hugh Acheson’s pickled tomato salad with ham dust and buttermilk dressing, Kevin Gillespie’s gazpacho three ways, and Joe Truex’s winning dish – summer tomato composition- local heirlooms, tomato parfait, tomato sorbet and tarragon.
Oh, and yes — the cocktails. My favorite last year was a creation by JCT’s Lara Creasy, titled “Ginger was a Sweet Tomato.” Lara’s concoction included 209 Gin, heirloom tomato, pickled local peaches, lemon, ginger/clove syrup, bitters with a pickled sungold tomato garnish.
Not only are Atlanta’s top chefs competing, a number of highly regarded chefs from nearby states are joining in as well, including Chris Hastings of Birmingham’s Hot and Hot Fish Club, Mike Lata of Charleston’s FIG and John Currence of Oxford, MS’s City Grocery. Judges include Andrew Knowlton, restaurant editor at Bon Appetit and Kate Krader , restaurant editor at Food & Wine. The event will be held on August 8th, from 1 to 5p.m. Tickets are $50 per person if purchased by August 1 and $65 thereafter, available online at the Georgia Organics site. The list of 2010 participants are listed below.
Jay Swift of 4th & Swift
David Larkworthy of 5 Seasons
Anne Quatrano of Abattoir, Bacchanalia, Star Provisions, Floataway Café and Quinones
Gerry Klaskala of Aria
Todd Ginsberg of Bocado
Carvel Grant Gould of Canoe
John Currence of City Grocery
Kevin Maxey of Craft
Matt Palmerlee of Farm 255
Mike Lata of FIG
Hugh Acheson of Five and Ten and The National
Ford Fry of JCT. Kitchen & Bar
Chris Hastings of Hot and Hot Fish Club
Craig Richards of La Tavola Trattoria
Bruce Logue of La Pietra Cucina
Gary Mennie of Livingston
Steven Satterfield of Miller Union
Keira Moritz of Pacci Ristorante and AltoRex Rooftop Lounge
Mark Alba of Paces 88
Hector Santiago of Pura Vida
Kevin Rathbun of Rathbun’s, Kevin Rathbun Steak and Krog Bar
Linton Hopkins of Restaurant Eugene and Holeman & Finch Public House
Ron Eyester of Rosebud
Scott Serpas of Serpas True Food
Jenny Levison of Souper Jenny
Eddie Hernandez of Taqueria del Sol
Joe Truex of Watershed
Kevin Gillespie of Woodfire Grill
Andy Minchow of Holeman & Finch Public House, Lara Creasy of JCT. Kitchen & Bar, Miles MacQuarrie of Leon’s Full Service, Cara Laudino of Miller Union, Kevin Bragg of Prohibition, Kysha Cyrus of Repast and Nick Hearin of Restaurant Eugene