Iron Barley's Tomato Fest Pays Homage to the Versatile Vegetable

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       Tomatoes really are the best. | Garry Knight
       Tomatoes really are the best. | Garry Knight

Iron Barley (5510 Virginia Avenue; 314-351-4500) is holding its ninth annual Tomato Fest Sunday, August 11, to benefit Lift for Life Gym. In addition to lots of tomatoes (duh), this year's festival also features a new event: a bloody-mary contest.

See also: - Photos: Making the World's Longest BLT at Iron Barley, 8.9.09 - Iron Barley Makes the World's Largest BLT. Again. - The Eight Bars With the Best Beer Selections in St. Louis: 2013

Competitors need to bring a $25 entry fee plus enough bloody-mary mix and garnish for two to four judges, and Iron Barley will provide the vodka and glasses. There are cash prizes and trophies! And really, who doesn't want a bloody-mary trophy?

There will also be a special tomato menu, including BLTs, vegetable lasagna and homemade pizza as well as other tomato-based cocktails, arts and crafts, games like the Cherry Tomato Toss and live music. And of course, the Unusual-Looking Tomato Contest!

The event is free, but the main fundraiser for Lift for Life Gym will be a live auction. The big item is a sixteen-person, five-course dinner at your home catered by Iron Barley, Hwy 61 Roadhouse (34 South Old Orchard Avenue, Webster Groves; 314-968-0061) and Tom's Bar and Grill (20 South Euclid Avenue; 314-367-4900). It's valued at over $5,000, so if you get it, we'd love an invite! Check the Iron Barley Facebook page for more information.

Gut Check is always hungry for tips and feedback. Email the author at [email protected] or follow her on Twitter.

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