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FOOD FEST | Calling all hot ‘mater mamas

2nd Annual Tomato Festival
Thurs. June 28-Sat. June 30
Edisto Island, various locations
Hwy. 174
(843) 869-9004

What’s more Southern and summery than a juicy tomato sliced thin and placed between two pieces of soft white bread that’s been slathered in creamy mayo? How about a tomato queen? Or a festival dedicated to the tomato? If Irmo can put on an Okra Strut and St. George can put on a grits fest, then surely the Edisto Island Open Land Trust can celebrate the vegetable that’s really a fruit. Today, only a handful of local farmers grow tomatoes anymore and most of those are sold at roadside stands and regional markets, but the tomato remains a revered food in these here parts. This weekend’s festival will raise money for the EIOLT and help preserve the lands of Edisto while providing a hell of a good time for the whole family with a golf tournament, an auction, a kids’ play park, a crafts fair, a street dance, and lots of recipe competitions and growing contests. And, if you know a gal who’s cute as a button, you ought to go ahead and enter her in the tomato queen contest. She’ll be crowned Saturday night at the street dance outside of Whaley’s. THURS-SAT.

Charleston Tea Plantation Tours — America’s only tea plantation, now owned by R.C. Bigelow, is open to visitors. Take a narrated bus tour of the fields and see how tea is made, talk to tea experts, and sample American Classic Tea. Each Sun. 12-4 p.m. and Wed.-Sat. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Charleston Tea Plantation, 6617 Maybank Hwy. 559-0383. www.bigelowtea.com/act

Thoroughbred Club Afternoon Tea — Afternoon tea with all the trimmings; reservations strongly suggested. Each Mon.-Sat. 1-4 p.m. $22/Classic Charleston, $27/ South of Broad. Thoroughbred Club, 205 Meeting St. Charleston Place Hotel. 722-4900 x7689.

Carolina Farms Stewardship Dinner — Whole Foods and Circa 1886 host a dinner to benefit the Carolina Farm Stewardship Association. Guests will choose between main courses of muscadine-glazed organic chicken breast and wreck bass with Hoppin’ John risotto. Wed. June 27, 6:30 p.m. $65 including tax and gratuity. Circa 1886, 149 Wentworth St. 853-7828. www.circa1886.com

Beer Tasting — This weekly tasting will offer samples of at least four higher gravity beers along with specials on cheese plates. Each Thurs. 5-8 p.m. Through June 28. $5. O’Hara & Flynn, 1640 Palmetto Grande Dr. 216-1916.

Charleston Farmers Market — Every Saturday, the market features the finest local produce, plants, flowers, and herbs along with food, fine art and crafts, and live entertainment. Each Sat. 8 a.m.-2 p.m. Through Dec. 16. Marion Square, Calhoun and King. 724-3746.

All-Natural Grill-Off — Earth Fare hosts its first ever, all natural grill-off features original recipes that adhere to Earth Fare’s food philosophy. There will be live music from the Island Trio. Food available for $5 a plate to benefit My Sister’s House. Earth Fare, 74 Folly Road. 769-4800 ext. 23. www.earthfare.com

4th of July Feast on the Lawn — A spectacular Fourth of July feast just for foodies on the lawn of the Wentworth Mansion. Chef Marc Collins will prepare a spread of three pea salad, toasted peanut coleslaw, spiced cucumber and melon salad, tomato salad with goat cheese, pulled pork sandwiches with mango rum barbecue sauce, peach cobbler, and a whole lot more. Eat, watch the fireworks, enjoy the jazz guitar. Registration required. Wed. July 4, 7:30 p.m. $65. Circa 1886, 149 Wentworth St. 853-7828. www.circa1886.com

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Wine Lover’s Happy Hour — Wine flights of five different wines of varying themes. Each Tues.-Sat. 5-7 p.m. $5 for 5 (2 oz. pours). Amuse, 1720 Sam Rittenberg Blvd. 573-8778.

Wine Wednesdays — Enjoy live music by local performer Eddie Stonaker and half-off any bottle from the new wine list. Each Wed. 5:30-8 p.m. Fish, 442 King St. 722-FISH. www.fishrestaurant.net

Arlaana Wine Tastings — Tasting of wines from around the world accompanied by hors d’oeuvres. Each Wed. 6-8 p.m. $20. Arlaana Restaurant, 259 Seven Farms Dr. 471-2400. www.arlaana.com

Wine Tasting — Sample wines with local distributors twice a week. Call for details. Each Mon. Thurs. 5-7 p.m. $5. Avondale Wine and Cheese, 813B Savannah Highway. (843) 769-5444.

In Good Tastings — Informal weekly wine event. Each Fri. 5-7 p.m. $1. In Good Taste, 1901 Ashley River Road. 763-5597.

O’Hara & Flynn Wine Tastings — O’Hara & Flynn offer Friday evening wine tastings focusing on summer wines, with specials on cheese plates. Each Fri. 5-8 p.m. Through July 6. $5. O’Hara & Flynn, 1640 Palmetto Grande Dr. 216-1916.

Flight Night — Sample varying flights of wine, focusing on Spanish flavors. Tues. $12-$25. Raval, 453 King St. 853-8466.

Red Drum Wine Series — Red Drum Wine Series #6 is featuring four tapas-style seasonal food and Italian wine pairings. Seating is limited and reservations are by credit card only. Tue., July 3, 6 p.m. $30. Red Drum Gastropub, 803 Coleman Blvd. 388-2606.

Making Ricotta Cheese — Learn to make ricotta cheese from Clemson University’s sustainable agriculture program. Thu., June 28, 6:30 p.m. Free. Earth Fare, 74 Folly Road. 769-4800.

Monday Night Chefs Series — On July 9, former Celia’s restaurant Chef Celia Cerasoli presents Italian favorites. Cypress Chef Craig Deihl demonstrates Lowcountry cuisine with a twist on July 16. Pastry Chef M. Kelly Wilson shares sweets on July 23, and Kramer returns on July 30 for those who can’t get enough. Meetings are in Building 920, room 407. Each Mon. 7-9:30 p.m. Through July 30. $49/course. Trident Technical College (Main Campus), 7000 Rivers Ave. 574-6805. www.tridenttech.edu/ce.htm

E-mail cuisine calendar items to editor@charlestoncitypaper.com or fax to 576-0380 by the Wed. before the week of the event.