In the case of most trilogies, the third edition of a Hollywood picture series is often the weakest [See: Return of the Jedi]. Fortunately for foodies, festivals are not subject to that rule of thumb. As such, and to the delight of the masses, the Attack of the Killer Tomato Festival returned yesterday in expanded form over at the Westside Provisions District. After a ragger of an event in 2010, I was all over this like a Cabbage Patch Kid in a tomato patch.
For those unaware, the festival is a slam dance mash up of booze, grub, and music that showcases both Atlanta chefs and that little round red ball of seedy goodness. Oh, hello belly … you are looking an awful lot like a tomato right now. Hosted by JCT Kitchen and sponsored by Georgia Organics, this year’s festival was the first to span both sides of the WPD bridge and went off in fine form. Despite young evil doers and their attempts to sway me with hints of pork festivals far far away, and obscene amounts of food, and a World Cup match to compete with, The Attack of The Killer Tomatoes was a whole lot of Deep South goodness.
Food fans of every inclination showed up, and it was absolutely a blast. While The Spazmatics freaked out on stage, we all beat the heat by sampling, amongst other things, some Tom Cat Collins’ (Courtesy of Andy Minchow/H+F) and some amazing grilled cheese “keasters” (from Gerry Klaskala of Aria).
Answer: Jay Swift, Anne Quatrano, Hugh Acheson, Chris Hastings, Kevin Gillespie, Bruce Logue. Question: Who are just a few of the awesome chef’s showing up at this years Attack of The Killer Tomato Festival?
Yes ladies and gents … it is that time again. Thanks to the good folks over at Georgia Organics, the Killer Tomatoes are back. Just like last year, the event will land at the Westside Urban Market, home to places like JCT Kitchen and Star Provisions. From 1pm – 5pm on Sunday August 8th, you’ll be able to indulge yourself in a sea of all things red.
During some of my intermittent and haphazard internet perusing, I stumbled upon really neat videos by Frank Ma and Eddie Hernandez, two well-known Atlanta chefs. Ma, who’s followed like a hawk by Atlanta’s Chinese gastronomes, recently sat down to talk about his arrival in the dirty South and the burgeoning food center that runs the length of Buford Highway. Though Ma has “officially” retired as a restaurateur since his short at Frank Ma South, his word still carries a great deal of weight. Check out this audio slide show:
Meanwhile, Taqueria Del Sol’s executive chef Eddie Hernandez also showed up … his video after the jump!
While executive chef Eddie Hernandez may not be a household name, his restaurant chain sure is. Ask someone to get tacos in this town, and there is a good chance that they’ll suggest one of the three Taqueria Del Sol locations as their destination du jour. Started a few years back with a single location over on the Westside, the restaurant now stretches across Atlanta’s waistline like Orion’s Belt. With locations on Cheshire Bridge and in Decatur, this taco bar empire has even showed up in Athens.
At the epicenter of this tortilla fest is founding chef Eddie Hernandez. Along with Mike Klank, the duo opened the Westside location way back in 2000 [Holy Crap! That’s 10 years ago]. You may have caught wind of that; this past month TDS celebrated their anniversary with a handful of events. They also made an appearance at the Souper Jenny Food Truck Extravaganza. If anyone is capable of handling all the running around, it’s Hernandez. The politically inclined gent once served as the mayor of Rosebud, TX. How’s that for a career change?
In any event, Hernandez has turned in his pen and paper and taken up a knife and tortilla maker. Thankfully, he found some time to join us for a little Q&A on this week’s edition of Inside The Chef’s Kitchen. Taqueria Del Sol is as popular as ever, and Hernandez is the reason. So get your Mint Julep (it’s Derby Day after all), kick back … and welcome to ITCK!