San Marzano tomato, known as the “king of tomatoes”, originates from the small town of San Marzano sul Sarno in the Campania region, in Southern Italy.
It is cultivated in the volcanic farmlands surrounding Naples and Salerno, at the foot of Vesuvius, from which it takes its sweet flavor and its distinctive intense aroma.
This particular territory characterized by a sea mild climate and a warm volcanic soil, fanned with sea breezes coming from the Gulf of Naples, is determinant for ensuring the quality of San Marzano tomatoes. In 1996 these lands were indeed awarded the Designation of Protected Origin (PDO) by the European Union, identifying and protecting products that are produced and processed in a specific geographical area.
What differentiates San Marzano from other kinds of tomatoes is the traditional technique adopted. The harvest usually takes place from July and September. Once the plants have matured, they are moved to the fields, hand-tied to wooden stakes. When the tomatoes are sun-ripened, they are picked by hand and steam peeled before being placed in jars, without any additional preservatives.
With a bright red color and an elongated shape, San Marzano peels easily and is characterized by an almost seedless, juicy flesh and thick skin. It is very low in acidity and it is distinguished by a delicate and harmonious bittersweet taste. San Marzano’s unique flavor keeps for a long time, even during preservation.
Its characteristics render San Marzano ideal for making sauces and preserves. It goes indeed very well with pasta, because it “literally sticks to the pasta”. Thanks to its sweetness and intense flavor, this tomato is commonly used for a great variety of dishes and creates a perfect balance with rich meats and cheeses. In addition, San Marzano sauce has been designated as the only variety that can be used for making the authentic Neapolitan pizza.
Famous for the high-quality, Gentile company’s San Marzano tomatoes are dried naturally in the sun, preserving the distinctive aromas of the Southern Mediterranean land.
These premium tomatoes are grown in San Marzano and are preserved in highly-quality extra virgin olive oil with selected aromas, such as oregano, pepper, salt and wine vinegar. This method of preservation ensures their unique sapid and dense flavor, and their tender texture.
Gentile dried tomatoes can be simply enjoyed on a lightly baked slice of bread as an appetizer or used as an ingredient for delicious recipes, adding flavor to pasta and mixed vegetables.