Black Cherry Tomato: Hanna’s Tomato Tastings 2010

Part of Hanna’s Tomato Tastings 2010

I bought the black cherry tomato because it combined by most favorite type of tomato (black tomatoes) with my least favorite (cherry tomatoes). I thought that in combination, I might find that final cherry tomato that I would really enjoy in the garden.

I can say that I am hopeful. These cherry tomatoes do certainly look like true black tomatoes. I just have to hope the flavor holds true to the color.

The description from the company I got it from reads:

It is not a plum, but a perfectly round cherry with classic black tomato flavor, sweet yet rich and complex. Fruit picks clean from the stem and is produced in abundance on vigorous, tall plants. These cherries are irresistibly delicious and a unique addition to the color spectrum of cherry tomatoes now available.

The Beauty Pageant:

Size: Slightly larger than a shooter marble but smaller than a golf ball. It is on the large side for a cherry tomato.

Shape: Very round. Near perfectly round, and I have harvested a good several dozen so far like this.

Color: Dusky pink on the bottom that gradually morphs into a dusky purple on top.

The inside:Medium size walls for a cherry tomato. Small seeds with rather firm gel. The core is almost as round as the outside of the tomato.

Texture: The skin is just thick enough that the cherry still has the ‘eyeball” effect, but it is certainly not as bad as some other cherry tomatoes I have tried. Once the skin pops though, the texture is smooth and silky. The seeds are small enough that they do not feel like seeds in the mouth.

Tasting:

Off the Vine Tasting: I like the flavor and it is almost exactly like they crossed a black tomato and a typical sweet cherry tomato and the fruit is the perfect balance of the two. It is interesting when you taste it, because your tongue is hit with both a deep, rich flavor and a sweet flavor at the same time. The flavor persists through when you swallow.

Sliced and Salted Tasting: Salting intensifies that dichotomy of rich and sweet. It is almost like the two ends of the flavor spectrum are pulled even further apart which make for an even more complex flavor.

Cooking Thoughts: It is a good salad tomato, but to be honest, I have been serving these as a side dish. Some nights we have them just plain and whole, and on other nights, halved, salted with some chopped basil thrown in. This is a great appetizer tomato. Just the right size.

Growing Notes:

Very vigorous vine, in both shape and production. I have had enough from this plant to keep tomatoes on the table every other night, despite the fact that my “big” tomatoes are under producing.

Will Hanna grow this one again:

Most likely yes. I love the flavor of this cherry tomato and my kids love the flavor as well. Which is important, because it make a good side dish that they will eat and would not just be a snitching and snacking tomato in the garden, which is what many other cherry tomatoes I have grown have turned into.

18 thoughts on “Black Cherry Tomato: Hanna’s Tomato Tastings 2010
  1. I appreciate these reviews because I haven’t found that one special cherry tomato. I really hope that I do one day and with your help, I just may.

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  2. Last year I planted a chocolate cherry that is either the same as the black cherry, or a very close relative. I’m still researching this. Anyway, this has become our favorite tomatoe to grow and has made a repeat performance in our garden and will for years to come. On a side note, I have to grab a few and send them down the road for my mother in-law who will sneak over and swipe a few every couple days.

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  3. This year I finally got a good crop but like you I got more small tomatoes then larger tomatoes. Seems like the smaller ones are easier to grow in south central Texas. I got much to learn.

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  4. Hanna,
    I love growing tomatoes in my garden but have never come across the black cherry variety in England. Your article has really inspired me and I’m going to try to track them down locally.

    Thanks very much.

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    kevs Reply:

    I’m growing Black Cherry this year, they’re a top tomato IMO. You’re right about the complex flavour, I find there’s a distinctive nuttiness to the aftertaste.

    Vicki, they’re available from Thompson and Morgan, and probably other seed sellers. If you can’t find it locally or mail-order, drop a note into my Livejournal (linked here) and I can send you some seeds I saved last season. It’s not a hybrid and the have come true for me.

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  5. Brian on

    I had bought a tomato last year marked white pearl – turned out to be a Black Pearl. It is a wonderful cherry, my favorite now, AND was a hit with everyone I shared with!

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  6. Jane Zimmerman on

    These sound so good that we might try them next year. You don’t mention whether they are hybrids. Will you be saving the seed, or where do you plan to get it next year? We have been enjoying the Black Crim (or Krim). You might want to try them if you haven’t. It’s big, black,and good-tasting.

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  7. Kristin on

    Hey Hanna,

    Is this tomato possibly one of the ones you gave me to plant in my garden? I could have sworn it said “Ethiopian Black” on the dixie cup, but my plant seems like a good match for your description. Could they be one in the same? Could I be recalling the name incorrectly?

    Thanks!
    Kristin

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    Hanna Reply:

    Black Ethiopeans are a bit bigger, normally between the size of tennis balls and golf balls (http://www.thisgardenisillegal.com/2006/09/black-ethiopian-hannas-tomato-tastings.html)

    But it is possible I switch the tags. I am occasionally prone to doing that. :)

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  8. Hi Hanna,
    Your reviews are great and right on target with my experience. This year has been an exceptional all around tomato harvest but the stand outs in terms of production and flavor have been the black cherry and the Black Trifele, which you reviewed several years ago. With just two plants of each I have been eating them regularly and even had enough to make a couple batches of sauce. Unheard of in my previous experience with black tomatoes. Thanks for such thorough and thoughtful posts.

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  9. Hi Hanna,

    I really like your blog. It is loaded with excellent information. About the Black Cherry tomatoes, I’m just wondering: were these tomatoes bread from another black tomato called Black Krim? I’ve grown them this season and they had a fantastic flavor. I suppose your Black Cherry tomatose are just as flavorous as the Black Krim. These Black Krim tomatoes originated from Russia. If you are interested in trying them, I’m pretty sure you can google and find the seeds on line. They are simply delicious!

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  10. Propagatrix on

    This is my absolutely very most favoritest princess snuggle-bear tomato ever. I’ve been growing it for four years and adore everything about it: the size, the slightly sprawly habit, the flavor…my friends and co-workers beg for Black Cherries every year,and every year I give them just enough to stave off attacks while keeping the larger share for myself.

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  11. Black Cherry is a very adaptable open-pollinated variety. I’ve been growing them for three years now both in my small, shady back yard beds and in my sunny, sandy community garden plot. They even do well grown in large containers. I stake or trellis Black Cherry plants and they produce loads of tasty tomatoes.

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  12. Never seen these before, but they sound like a tasty tomatoe. I will certainly try them. They will make an interesting point of conversation when growing or displayed on the dinner table.

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  13. larry decker on

    we’re not usually impressed by cherry tomatoes. For example, Matt’s Wild (at least in our garden in east TN) produces tiny fruit, a pretty puny looking plant and a taste that strikes us as being just OK. I won’t bother planting it again. BUT, this tomatoe has a decidedly “black tomatoe” taste that we really like, produces lots of good size (given its a cherry) fruit and a hardy looking plant. We’ll replant it every year.

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