Author Topic: FTG 2014 MangoFest  (Read 7063 times)

FloridaGreenMan

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FTG 2014 MangoFest
« on: July 12, 2014, 04:44:48 PM »
Just got back from the 2014 Fairchild Mango Festival….if you like Mangos, this is the epicenter! You can buy and tastes dozens of varieties. There are hundreds of varieties on display like nowhere in the world. This year’s festival theme was the Mangos of Colombia. Colombians are very knowledgeable about their tropical fruits and have excellent cultivars of all kinds of fruits and some of their favorite mangos were on display including Azucar and Vallenato. Noris Ledesma gave an outstanding lecture about her beloved Colombian mangos! The place was packed.  I got to meet up with lots of great friends and mango experts including Yair Aron from Puerto Rico, Richard Campbell, Noris, Chris Rollins, Ken Love from Hawaii, Jim West from Ecuador, Jay Cotterman from Ohio, Robert Hamilton from Atlanta,  Warren Condon and Paulette from Miami plus many others. A really great day. If you have never been to this fest, put it on your bucket list!!!   












Noris Ledesma and Yair Aron


Not just mangos, we also got to sample some awesome Guatemalen Rambutans










Jay Cotterman in Jakfruit heaven
FloridaGreenMan

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #1 on: July 12, 2014, 04:58:32 PM »
So what did you buy?
Joe

FloridaGreenMan

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #2 on: July 12, 2014, 06:46:21 PM »
I bought Manzanillo, Valencia Pride, Piña Colada, and Golden Lippens....I will provide a taste evaluation later on.... 
FloridaGreenMan

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #3 on: July 12, 2014, 07:11:12 PM »
 FGM, nice pics. Thanx for the report. Noris is a great person. I definitely need to include the Festival on my "to do" list.

FRUITBOXHERO

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #4 on: July 12, 2014, 08:11:02 PM »
I bought Manzanillo, Valencia Pride, Piña Colada, and Golden Lippens....I will provide a taste evaluation later on....
Awesome, Thank you! and beautiful pics!
Joe

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #5 on: July 12, 2014, 08:25:56 PM »
Looks like fun! But really...to time it fruit conference on same weekend as World Cup finals?? That is sacriligeous....and not so smart.
Oscar

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #6 on: July 12, 2014, 11:08:08 PM »
Would reply to Noel but I'm busy packing mangos for the trip home!  Thanks Rob and Sheehan!!!!

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #7 on: July 13, 2014, 05:11:27 AM »
Hi,
maravilhoso,  :o Hummmmmmmmmmmmmmmm! :P.
All mangoes are good, beautiful pictures 8).

mangomandan

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #8 on: July 13, 2014, 08:19:09 AM »
Great pictures!

You are one social guy, Mr. Greenman!  I've never been able to elbow my way to the front of the crowd to actually meet Dr. Campbell,     or Chris Rollins or other luminaries.

I think it was unfair of Richard Campbell to mention the new orgasm-inducing mango varieties without giving us more information, or hope for their future availability.  8)
Do you think these numbered-but-not-yet-named varieties are from Zill?

This year was the first time I've tasted Fairchild mango in many years. It was definitely better than I remembered.

Regarding Angie, Dr. Campbell said that they store well at 52 degrees.  It wasn't clear to me if he was thinking in commercial terms or if I have to buy a wine fridge to  cool my (future)  crop for weeks before I eat them.

canesgirl821

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #9 on: July 13, 2014, 08:59:00 AM »
Thinking of going down today.  Sounds a bit overwhelming with all they have on the calendar but I guess you don't have to do it all, right? Anyone see any Graham available for tasting? I see it's in the cultivar list.

FloridaGreenMan

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #10 on: July 13, 2014, 11:12:19 AM »
Thinking of going down today.  Sounds a bit overwhelming with all they have on the calendar but I guess you don't have to do it all, right? Anyone see any Graham available for tasting? I see it's in the cultivar list.

It’s a bit early in the season for Grahams. My tree is loaded with fruit but only a few are ready as of this week. I also did not see any Grahams for sale but you may want to ask since they are bringing in new crates of fruit all during the day.   
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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #11 on: July 13, 2014, 12:56:58 PM »
Wow that looks like an awesome time, loads of great fruits and lots of nuts there too. ;D

canesgirl821

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #12 on: July 13, 2014, 01:00:16 PM »
On my way home now. Hope the rest of my bucket list is more exciting that that ... but that's just me.  Glad I went, won't go again. Was fun to come back home to Miami, check out my alma matter. Now glad to be going back to Sunrise! Now that I know where to get my Grahams I'm good. :)

FloridaGreenMan

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #13 on: July 13, 2014, 07:02:51 PM »
On my way home now. Hope the rest of my bucket list is more exciting that that ... but that's just me.  Glad I went, won't go again. Was fun to come back home to Miami, check out my alma matter. Now glad to be going back to Sunrise! Now that I know where to get my Grahams I'm good. :)

When I said "bucket list", I mean that as a rare fruit enthusiast's kind of place. No, there are no water slides or roller coasters at Fairchild's festival but there are plenty of rare mangos, great lectures, good food and the chance to meet and rub shoulders with the coolest mango experts on the planet. I even ran into the former president of the Dominican Republic, Hipolito Mejia, who is grows mangos as a hobby!  He goes to this fest every year.     

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #14 on: July 13, 2014, 08:43:26 PM »
It seems our experiences were very different. I thought the "tasting" was sad, tiny pieces of imported Edward, Kent, Champagne ... and a few other mediocre mangoes ... 6 in total. Lecture going on while I was there was talking about how much to water mango trees! Did not see tables of mangoes like in your pictures. If you had opportunities to try other than the 6 cultivars in the tasting room you were luckier than I was, but I didn't see where that would have been. Bought some mangoes, found 1 LZ, a Dot, a Beverly, a Mulgoba and a few Edwards from Puerto Rico, which I learned after I bought them. Hoped to buy an Angie tree, was the only one sold out! Did I mention it was HOT?!? Maybe I'm spoiled ... being able to drop by Benders for my mango fix. Really glad others enjoyed themselves but I'd rather save my 2 hour drives for Truly Tropical, Excaliber or Zills where I can actually get something for my money.
P.S. Fairchild was beautiful and definitely enjoyed the butterfly walk, would go back in the 'winter' when exploring wouldn't be so bloody miserable, my disappointment was with the mango festival itself.  :-[
P.S.S. Looking at your pics again, was your lecture inside? It looks like it was and those tables full of mangoes also appear to be indoors. Maybe that is a big difference, while I was there the indoor area was closed for a private brunch. Maybe the 'fancy' people I didn't get to meet were all in there toasting to all the good mangoes and the a/c!
« Last Edit: July 13, 2014, 08:54:51 PM by canesgirl821 »

murahilin

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #15 on: July 13, 2014, 09:19:02 PM »
It seems our experiences were very different. I thought the "tasting" was sad, tiny pieces of imported Edward, Kent, Champagne ... and a few other mediocre mangoes ... 6 in total. Lecture going on while I was there was talking about how much to water mango trees! Did not see tables of mangoes like in your pictures. If you had opportunities to try other than the 6 cultivars in the tasting room you were luckier than I was, but I didn't see where that would have been. Bought some mangoes, found 1 LZ, a Dot, a Beverly, a Mulgoba and a few Edwards from Puerto Rico, which I learned after I bought them. Hoped to buy an Angie tree, was the only one sold out! Did I mention it was HOT?!? Maybe I'm spoiled ... being able to drop by Benders for my mango fix. Really glad others enjoyed themselves but I'd rather save my 2 hour drives for Truly Tropical, Excaliber or Zills where I can actually get something for my money.
P.S. Fairchild was beautiful and definitely enjoyed the butterfly walk, would go back in the 'winter' when exploring wouldn't be so bloody miserable, my disappointment was with the mango festival itself.  :-[
P.S.S. Looking at your pics again, was your lecture inside? It looks like it was and those tables full of mangoes also appear to be indoors. Maybe that is a big difference, while I was there the indoor area was closed for a private brunch. Maybe the 'fancy' people I didn't get to meet were all in there toasting to all the good mangoes and the a/c!

I don't got the mango festival anymore for the same reasons. It's way too hot, too crowded, nothing much to learn from the lectures and better mangos can be bought elsewhere. I do enjoy going to Fairchilds, but not during the Mango of Chocolate festivals. It's nice during Orchid Festival, the Ramble, Spring Festival, and any other cooler time of the year.

canesgirl821

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #16 on: July 13, 2014, 09:31:44 PM »
Thank you, I feel better now ... glad it's not just me!  :)

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #17 on: July 13, 2014, 11:35:35 PM »
I would have liked to visit the event,  I never have been at Fairchild Gardens during the mango festival.

But I did send an alt.  my sister is in town, and she went to the festival,  she loved the place,   all these varieties are all new to her, she is only accustomed to what you find in stores.

I asked her before hand to keep notes on what mangoes she liked.

She only tried about 8 varieties.  she bought two varieties  to bring back ( just fruits not trees )  the Mallika, and one I was not familiar with "Myatrynat"  I thought it was a misspelling, but that's how its spelled.

The mango she liked the best out of all she tried,  was the Alphonso. 

She told me I should volunteer to be behind the tables, because the people there, seemed to not know much about the mangoes, my sister and another person were asking questions about the varieties on display, and they just did not know.   I have no idea if that's the way it always is, or maybe they were just substituting at the time.

I can understand that for many mango veterans  in the forum, the festival is something you visit once or maybe twice and that's it, as you say, not much more you can learn, and the money and time could be used to buying mangoes or trees closer to you.

But to the civilians and newcomers, its a real treat,  its important that consumers try new varieties,  and learn that there is more to mangoes than Imported champagne's and Tommy Atkins. 

Sister also tried Rambutan for the first time,  so she really enjoyed the whole thing.
William
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kalan

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #18 on: July 14, 2014, 01:08:16 AM »
Thank you, I feel better now ... glad it's not just me!  :)

Yeah, not just you. Last year was my last year attending. Very hot and crowded. Samples are small, often mangled, and rarely something impressive or new. Prices are decent for trees (money goes to supporting Fairchild), but most lectures are not overly helpful to someone who has been on this list for a few months. Nice to speak with some of the big nursery folks like Richard Lyons, Eric teig and the searle bros, even pick Ledesma's brain. So in that sense it is quite the gathering of plant minds. And they do have free beer samples though...

The big tables of mangos are for the incredibly overpriced auction that takes place at the end. Some heavy hitters pay hundreds of dollars for a basket of 4-5 mangoes. Those aren't for sampling. :)

Keith

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #19 on: July 14, 2014, 08:19:00 AM »
yup, same here.  I usually go because the wife looks forward to the day, but the more i learn about mangoes, the more i realize that visiting walter zill's place would be more worthwhile for the mango enthusiast.  This isn't to bash fairchild, but unless the lectures are really interesting, it's not worth the price of admission to push and shove for $2 mangoes that are green and may not ripen properly.  I am saddened by the $1 imported kents and keitts they have each year, that are grocery store mangoes.  Even the trees, are often found in local nurseries, except for 1 or 2 that are pretty rare, but never available to sample fruit first.  Plus, for some reason, they don't sell the stuff we mango snobs are seeking (mahachanok, lemon zest, coconut cream, etc.).  I have come to realize they are very liberal with their descriptions as well ("in the heat of summer, a better mango than graham is hard to find???)  I think selling someone a graham tree that hasn't tried it and may be a mango novice could set their excitement back for many years.  Imagine buying a jeanellen and graham if you only had space for 2 trees! 

As I stated above, I will most-likely keep going in the future, but my expectations are very minimal now.  I think it's more geared to the big players in mango growing, and to novices who see it advertised and say "I like mangoes, let's go"  I do agree with sheehan regarding the spring festival and ramble though--cooler weather and a lot of good fruit. 
Mango mania at F&S park is a great event for (enthusiasts) trying varieties to see what you like so you can get a good tree for your yard.  Put that on your bucket list, along with visiting Walter and truly tropical picking tour with Har (guanabanus)
~Jeff

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #20 on: July 14, 2014, 09:08:04 AM »
i agree with all of the above.  However, for a first timer, it was pretty cool to see the number of people who came out to the event, all of the vendors, and getting to meet some of the folks from the forum as well.  The heat on Saturday could have given Thailand competition.  Thought we were going to melt.  Anyway...was worth going once.

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #21 on: July 14, 2014, 11:38:17 AM »
I went to last year's festival. It was pretty neat to see such a big gathering dedicated to mango. But to be honest I agree with what a few others have said, you can learn just as much about mangos (and probably more) with a visit to Zill's and Bender's. The mango I sampled at the festival wasn't fully ripe. I don't remember exactly what varieties they had when I went through, but I do remember they weren't as good as they should be. Obviously there are huge challenges when trying to get enough mangos available and ripe at the time when hoards of people are sampling.

I would definantly goto one festival if you have the chance, but I now see it as a "been there, done that".
Mango: the other white meat

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #22 on: July 14, 2014, 05:40:32 PM »
i agree with all of the above.  However, for a first timer, it was pretty cool to see the number of people who came out to the event, all of the vendors, and getting to meet some of the folks from the forum as well.  The heat on Saturday could have given Thailand competition.  Thought we were going to melt.  Anyway...was worth going once.

I think you can make same criticisms of a lot of events. For example, i don't usually attend the fruit conferences here. They are mostly geared for people that don't live here and are just visiting for first or second time. Really for someone who has lived here long time it's not exciting or anything new. I think same applies to Fairchild mango festival. I really enjoyed it first time i attended. Was quite the spectacle. Just seeing so many different kinds of mangos assembled in one room was mango-mind blowing! I still remember the intoxicating wafty aroma in that room. :) The heat was rather oppresive, but not hard to avoid by just attending all the AC lectures. As a result i didn't do much socializing, but just soaked in the AC, and Richard Campbell gave some nice animated talks. I'd say it's a must do if you've never gone to it before. It has a lot of international feel to it, not so much a 'local yocal' event
Oscar

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #23 on: July 14, 2014, 06:05:42 PM »
I agree with Oscar and WISH I had gone on Saturday, when the lectures actually were in the ac in the room with the wafting mango smell.  I have since realized that this was only Saturday, the Sunday lectures were outside in the 'fresh' (read 'unbearable') air, from which there was no escape, as everything on Sunday while I was there was outdoors except for the brunch ... which I wasn't privy to.   :(

ScottR

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Re: FTG 2014 MangoFest
« Reply #24 on: July 14, 2014, 07:54:56 PM »
Noel, thanks for posting great pic's as all ways, man I've got add this event to my bucket list I've never seen so many different varieties of Mango in one place. ;) 8)

 

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