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Recipe courtesy of The Restaurant at Wente Vineyards

Nothing says summer like sweet, juicy, homegrown tomatoes and a hot grill! We’ve been serving this soup in The Restaurant, making it from the fresh tomatoes out in Diane’s garden. This delicious recipe is easy enough to whip up for a light meal and elegant enough for a weekend dinner party.

Prep time: 30 minutes
Cook time: 45 minutes
Total time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Yield: 2 servings


3 lb Heirloom Tomatoes
1 Red Onion
4 Garlic Cloves
¼ Cup Chardonnay (preferably Wente Vineyards!)
2 Sprigs Thyme
8 Peppercorns
1 Fresh Bay Leaf
3 Cups Water
2 Tbl Champagne Vinegar
¼ Cup Whole Milk
Olive Oil (as needed)
2 Thick Slices – Sourdough Bread
2 Tbl Crème Fraiche (or sour cream)


1. Start heating a gas or charcoal grill.

2. Core the tomatoes, cut them in half equatorially and toss them in a large bowl with olive oil, salt and pepper.

3. Slice the onions into thick rounds and oil liberally.

4. Place the tomatoes on the hot grill cut side down and let cook for 5 minutes or until the flesh is nicely charred. Remove from the grill and repeat the process with onions.

5. Place a large pot on the stove and heat a small amount of olive oil. Add the grilled onions and the garlic. Sweat over medium heat for 3-4 minutes. Add the tomatoes, thyme, and black pepper, cook for 3-4 minutes. Deglaze with the white wine and cook for about 1 minute before adding the water. Bring the pot to a simmer and let cook for 15 minutes.

6. Remove from heat and process the soup in a blender or with an immersion blender. Adjust seasoning with vinegar, milk, salt and pepper.

7. Lightly oil the sourdough bread and grill it until well marked and toasted. Cut into triangles.

8. Carefully ladle the soup into bowls, top with a triangle of grilled bread and a small dallop of crème fraiche.