Toma-wha’?

Okay, I’ll get this out of the way right off the top:

I, Lisa Moskaluk, have never had a V8.

It’s true, never. And, before you ask, no I do not walk lop-sided. Alright, I probably just aged myself there…

Why do I share this information, I can hear you ask? Well, I was recently contacted by the creator of Tomatina, John Goldfuss:

I’m writing to ask you to consider running a feature about my Kickstarter project. If you like, I can send you a juice sample. Your post will provide readers with the first look at an up and coming, unique health food.”

My reply was, “Yes, of course!” But, I warned him I would give an honest opinion of his product – the good and the bad.

Well, he’s pretty confident in his it because he accepted the challenge and, a week later, this cute little package arrived in the mail!

toma outside

Obviously, in the fairness of review, I had to buy a V8. I already had cans of tomato juice in my fridge – if you’re a loyal blog follower, you will know that I drink 7oz of tomato juice every morning.

Allow me to explain the importance of tomatoes…

  • Tomatoes and tomato products are our primary source of lycopene. Guava, watermelon, pink grapefruit, apricots, papaya and red chilies contain less significant amounts
  • Tomatoes contain powerful antioxidants quercetin and lycopene
  • Quercetin protects your coronary arteries from plaque build-up
  • Lycopene protects you against heart disease and prostate cancer
  • Lycopene acts as an anti-inflammatory, which soothes muscle pain. Think about it… off-season, heavy workouts, DOMS, recovery for the next workout, tomato juice – see where I’m going here?
  • It can take as many as 6 whole tomatoes to get a sufficient daily dose of lycopene – drinking 1 cup of juice has a greater effect, or enjoy warm tomato soup!

Convinced?

What is Tomatina?

Tomatina is named after the annual tomato tossing festival in Spain.

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The Spanish town of Buñol is filled with truckloads of tomatoes, and mayhem ensues. Then, everyone washes up and has a big party! Crazy Spaniards.

Tomatina’s creator, John Goldfuss, must really love Spain, or tomatoes, or both, because he decided to start his company in his tiny New York apartment.

The Experiment

toma cans

Setup

As I mentioned, in the interest in science review, I purchased a can of V8. I then opened a fresh can of Heinz tomato juice. (Neither Heinz, nor the makers of V8, have paid for the above mention. That’s just what I happened to have/pick up from my grocery store)

I ensured all were equally chilled in my refrigerator prior to the taste-test. Don’t ask me what the precise temperature was, it’s not that scientific!

I poured out equal measures of Heinz and V8, and lined it up alongside my sample of Tomatina.

toma three toms

Taste-test

I was excited to try out Tomatina. I mean, some stranger sent me this sample all the way from New York!

I took a whiff of it first – wouldn’t you?

Tomatina smells just like a Roma tomato, freshly sliced. Organic. Earthy. It made my tastebuds water, and it took all my might to not gulp the whole thing down in one shot! I took a small sip, like I was some kind of sommelier – that’s a fancy word for “wine taster”.

Okay, time out. Just picture this: I’m standing in my kitchen in my grubby lounge wear, sniffing and sipping tomato juice like it’s wine. Thankfully the curtains were drawn and the boy was at work. The dog doesn’t judge.

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I took a sip… YUM! The first thing that hits me is, it’s pulpy. Really pulpy. But, I’m a grove stand orange juice, extra pulp, kinda girl. Tomatina has the ideal amount of pulp. So much so, that it convinces me that I’m doing something good for my body. Although Heinz is just tomatoes and salt, I always feel a little guilty when drinking it, believing it to be full of bad preservatives.

Tomatina has a deeper quality to it, full-bodied.

Unknown

Next up, V8. I was kind of excited to try V8 too. I mean, I’m 38 25 years old, and I’ve NEVER had a V8!

Major disappointment. It was thin, and watery. Flat. It tasted processed, which it obviously is. There was not rich tomato taste, like I had with the Tomatina. It smelled of tomatoes, but tomatoes that had been sitting out on a deck, drying all summer. I sadly realized why I had never tried V8 before.

Heinz_Keystone_Logo

Finally, my beloved tomato juice. I drink both the Heinz and No Name brand, and prefer Heinz for the same reason I prefer Tomatina over V8 – the texture and depth. My only gripe with Heinz is the salt content. It’s a salty little bugger! Compared to Tomatina… well, there’s not really a comparison. I like them equally, perhaps leaning more towards Tomatina because it just makes me feel like I’m doing something healthy for my body. It tastes more original and organic.

Results

I sort of already gave you my results above. I think there is a real place for Tomatina among the healthy food industry. Sure, you can make your own juice – that is, if you shell out a few hundred bucks for juicer that’s a pain in the arse to clean! Or, you can help out a little business that could, and buy into Tomatina.

I’m not trying to sell you anything here. I wouldn’t do that, it’s shady. This is my honest opinion of Tomatina. If you’re convinced enough to know more, check out what the maker has to say here. It’s a “kickstarter” company, which basically means Tomatina will only get off the ground if enough money is “pledged”. So, if you’re interested enough to try it, here’s what John has to say:

“I wish I had more information on when Tomatina will be available for purchase in Canada.  If your readers donate to the Kickstarter campaign, they can receive the finished product by mail, directly from me.”

A few bucks to try something brand spankin’ new? Not a bad swap, if you ask me.

Nutrient Data Comparisons

Tomatina

Whole Peeled Tomatoes (Tomatoes, Tomato Juice, Salt, Citric Acid, Calcium Chloride), Tomato Juice (Water, Tomato Paste, Salt, Citric Acid, Vitamin C), Beet Juice Concentrate (Beet Juice Concentrate, Citric Acid), Carrot Juice Concentrate, Cucumber Juice, Red Bell Pepper, Celery Juice, Ginger Juice, Beet Powder, Spices.

53 calories per 80z

  • 0 grams of fat
  • 11 grams of carbs
  • 2 grams of protein
  • 7 grams of sugar
  • 410mg of sodium

V8

Water, Tomato Paste, Juice of  (Carrots, Celery, Beets, Parsley, Lettuce, Watercress, Spinach), with Salt and Seasonings

70 calories per 11oz

  • 0 grams of fat
  • 15 grams of carbs
  • 3 grams of protein
  • 12 grams of sugar
  • 650mg of sodium

Heinz Tomato Juice

Tomato juice, Salt – there are other vegetables, water, etc. added, but that’s all they have on the side of the can! What are they hiding?? 😉

50 calories per 8oz

  • 0 grams of fat
  • 10 grams of carbs
  • 2 grams of protein
  • 6 grams of sugard
  • 570mg of sodium

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