Around this time in the Pacific Northwest, tomatoes are about as good as they can get. Straight-up, pan-seared or roasted, get your hands on some from your favorite farmers market and follow this summer gazpacho recipe courtesy of Cristina and Jose Chesa, owners of Spanish destination Ataula in NW Portland.

“Tomatoes in Portland are pure magic,” Cristina Chesa says as she gushes about her star ingredient. “When the season hits, you can find a rainbow of beautifully ripe tomatoes. Take your pick from sweet, super sweet, meaty, mild… When this happens we make gazpacho at home and at our restaurant every day.”  

Described as “impeccable” by Chesa, the Illahe Vineyards Estate 2017 Tempranillo Rosé is a Spanish-inspired, whole-cluster pressed wine. The delightful rosé exudes a pale pink hue with a kiss of strawberry, making it a refreshing sipper for this first course stunner.  

Gazpacho del Pacifico  
Serves 4-6 (yields 1 liter)  

8 ripe tomatoes, diced  
1 cup strawberries, diced
½ cup cucumber, diced  
½ cup red bell pepper, diced
½ cup white onions, diced
3 garlic cloves, diced  
1 cup bread, can be cubed or torn into chunks  
1-2 cups olive oil 
Sherry vinegar, to taste 
2-3 cups water, to taste
Salt and pepper, to taste  

Place all vegetables, fruit and bread into a blender and mix until smooth, 4-5 minutes on medium speed. Add the olive oil and sherry vinegar and season to taste. Add water to desired texture and taste, then add salt and pepper to taste. Serve in fun glassware or soup bowls. Refrigerate leftovers for 4-5 days.