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Sake and A Question About Green Tomatoes


Wetlands Sake is a local outfit that has been producing small-batch, locally-sourced rice wines for a year or so now, and they’ve put out some really good stuff.

Over the years I’ve had a chance to try some really good wines, and some of those have been sake. I would not call myself an expert by any means, but I know what I like and I very much like Wetlands’ filtered sake.

I specify that I liked the filtered variety because I like it better than the unfiltered. I am not a fan of unfiltered sake, generally, and if that makes me an apostate you have at least been warned.

I had a chance to taste Wetlands’ initial offerings when they were just starting to get their products into wide distribution, and I’m very happy that they’ve made a success of it.

On February 3, they’re launching their taproom. It’s at 634 Orange St., and from 4 to 9 p.m. they’ll have crawfish, food trucks and live music to celebrate. Here is an excerpt from the press release I received:

The taproom is located in a converted warehouse in the Lower Garden District and features large picture windows overlooking the brewing facility. It is fitted with a garage door that opens to a plethora of outdoor seating including pergolas and a covered patio. The bar showcases eight taps of limited edition sakes available on a rotating basis. This includes a large variety of sake experiences including traditional sakes, hopped sake, sparkling sakes, and the creative concept of cocktail-inspired sake infusions. Additionally, adjoining market and eatery, The Commissary (opening late February), will serve a menu of elevated bar fare available during the same hours as the taproom.

I don’t know who among us could say “no” to a plethora of outdoor seating, but I suspect it is the sort of person who would turn their nose up at the eight taps of sakes, too, and I will have no truck with that sort of person.

Unless, however, that sort of person has some idea what I can do with two quarts of unripe, small Roma tomatoes. Because I have two quarts of unripe, small Roma tomatoes.

I take great pleasure in my garden, but my garden does not always reciprocate the feeling. I can grow herbs, greens and a few other things but I am not all that good with tomatoes.

My friend Jose gave me some seeds that he said were from Costa Rica. The plant is incredibly vigorous and self-seeds. The tomatoes are never bigger than a marble, usually smaller and full of seeds. A couple of years after he first gave me the seeds I asked Jose what people in Costa Rica used the tomatoes for. “Salsa, I think?” he said.

I love those tiny tomatoes, don’t get me wrong, but I’m starting to think they’ve influenced the other tomatoes I was trying to grow. All of which, regardless of the variety, are small.

Which brings me to the question I have for you. What would you do with two quarts of very small, unripe Roma tomatoes? Because my Roma tomato plants had only just started to produce fruit these last couple of weeks and then we had a spell of weather cold enough to more or less kill my tomato plants.

Now I have two quarts of very small, unripe Roma tomatoes and while I’ve made a salsa with some of them, I am at a loss as to what else I should do. I could pickle them, make a chutney and I suppose I could make a jam. What would you recommend?

I await your response.




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