I sat down with brick & tin chef-owner Mauricio Papapietro to talk about his food philosophy, his background in the kitchens of Chris Hastings and Frank Stitt, his relationships with local and regional farmers and the power of the heirloom tomato.
You can read the entire store here on Alabama NewsCenter.
One thing you should know right now: Papapietro sells the most amazing heirloom tomatoes right from shelves in the bakery located in the Mountain Brook Village location.
Here’s what he said about these summer favorites: “When I got to Mountain Brook, we realized the power of the heirloom tomato. I mean the love that people have for the tomato! The heirloom tomato we get is an old tomato … meaning it’s an old seed that has not been modified. It’s just a much better tomato. It’s delicious. So people absolutely go crazy for them. We buy all these tomatoes from local farmers, people we know. We have farmers coming in the door, sweating, bringing in all these tomatoes, and we’re trying to find places to put them. We started putting them on shelves in the bakery, and people started wanting to buy them. So I asked the farmers, ‘Do you mind if we sell the tomatoes?’ Because they might take them to a market to sell them for more. And every farmer I talked to said, ‘I don’t care. As long as you’re buying tomatoes from me, you can seel them here if you want.’ So it’s actually a thing now in the community. People wait until the tomatoes start to come in and we fill up our shelves in the bakery and people can buy them.”
One of the most popular dishes–at both the downtown location and the Mountain Brook Village store– is the Summer Salad, and it features these tomatoes with field peas, sweet corn, cucumbers, basil and balsamic vinaigrette. Get it while you can!