#FoodFiction: “Patty’s Juice”


Questo racconto è il risultato della collaborazione tra SapereFood e Umbra Institute. Dopo aver visitato alcune importanti aziende della regione, gli studenti hanno scritto delle storie di fantasia sperimentando il “product placement”, ovvero l’inserimento di un marchio all’interno della narrazione.

by Emily Quinn

Inspired by a visit to Le Cimate Winery

They can’t catch me! I run and run through the tall, green rows and Mama and Daddy will never catch me! I’m giggling as I stop behind a vine of grapes to catch my breath. These ones are purple, but the man who talked about them called them red. I thought red was brighter; these are dark. But I bet they make yummy juice. Mama and Daddy have been tasting the juice all day, but not me. Maybe they will let me have some at lunch. I reach out to pick one of the red-purple grapes off of the vine. It bursts in my mouth as I bite into it! The taste is sweet, but the seeds get caught in my teeth after I swallow.

I walk around the row of vines and come out to the back of the big house where they hold the grapes. It’s a long ways up! I have to crane my neck to see the tippy top of the house. The grapes have a very nice house. The man who walked around with us said that when the grapes are ready, they get to take a bath in the silver cylinders. I like the way those words slip on my tongue. Silver cylinders. Like a tongue-twister!

The grapes are probably taking a bath right now! I run over into the grape bathing room. Ch-ch-ch, say the silver cylinders. There are definitely grapes in there right now! Do grapes like cold baths or warm baths? Do grapes turn color when they take baths? Sometimes my warm baths make me pink! Is there such a thing as a pink grape? I can’t think of any time that I saw a pink grape, but I go upstairs to look for some anyway.

The stairs lead up to the barrel room. I’ve never seen so many barrels! Mama said that each barrel is special because each one has a different blend of grapes. I think this is how they make different juices with it. The man told us that one of the juices has flavors of other fruits in it too, like cherries and strawberries and blackcurrants. I don’t know what blackcurrants are, but when the man said that they’re sweet and my Daddy looked at me and said “Like you, Patty!” I’m giggling just thinking about it again! My Daddy is so funny! He even bought that sweet fruity wine just because it reminded him of me, he said. I think it’s called Saudade. I hope it’s as sweet as my Daddy says and that he thinks of me when he drinks it.

I hear a loud noise go off in the barrel room, so I run back downstairs just in case I get in trouble. Where are Mama and Daddy? They were chasing me, but I don’t remember where they went. My tummy rumbles as I make my way back outside of the big grape house. Maybe it’s lunch time! I race over to the smaller house next to the rows of grapes because I remember seeing tables lined up there like the one in our kitchen. Before I can peek inside to find Mama and Daddy, I see a play set on the grass in front of the small house. They have a mini house to play in!

The littlest house is next to a bunch of trees, and is pink and yellow with little windows and a slide on one end. I climb into the house to see what’s inside. The grass is the floor, and I imagine a kitchen right next to the stairs up to the slide. I know! I’ll make my own juice! Then I can share it with Mama and Daddy and we will all eat lunch together in my little house in the trees!

I jump onto the slide to go back to the grape rows and race over to where I first ate the red-purple grape. The vines are so full; I take as many as I can hold in my hands and pockets. Soon, my shirt and pants have red and purple stains all over them, but I don’t care. I’m going to be a juice-maker, just like the man who showed us around!

With my pockets full, I run back to my little house as fast as I can. I must have ran too fast, because I dropped some of the grapes on the way. In fact, by the time I got back to my house, there were only two grapes left in my hands. I look behind me and see a trail of grapes from where I ran. There are tears in my eyes as I watch them get trampled on by a car coming up the drive way. Those were my grapes! I cling to my final two grapes and start to cry.

Before I know it, Mama is picking me up and Daddy is coming up right behind her.

“What’s wrong, Patty? Where did you go? Are you okay?” They say.

I was trying to answer them, but my chest was hurting so bad, I couldn’t speak. Daddy takes me from Mama’s arms and into his own. He rubs my back and says “Shhhh” so that I will calm down. It took a couple of deep breaths, but I finally do calm down.

“I wanted to get grapes in my little house kitchen so I could make juice for our lunch and we could all drink the juice together and eat lunch together!” I say in one long breath.

Mama and Daddy look at each other before pulling me into a group hug.

“That’s okay, baby,” Mama says. “We were looking for you because we have a surprise for you! It’s lunch time, aren’t you hungry?”

I nod and Daddy sets me down on the ground.

“Then let’s go see what’s for lunch!” He says, taking my left hand while Mama takes my right.

We walk together through the trees, and I try to sniff up all my tears. When we get to the building where I saw tables, I see a little table with three chairs around it. Mama and Daddy lead me to it and set me down on one of the chairs before they sit down.

The man who makes the juice came to our table and said, “Patty! I’m so glad you are able to join us for lunch! I have your drink right here.”

He sets a cup full of purple juice down in front of me. I look up at him first, then at Mama and Daddy.

“Go on,” Mama says.

“It’s just for you!” Daddy says, too.

I pick up the cup carefully, with both hands, and drink the purple juice. It tastes just like the grapes! Sweet and yummy! I drink and drink until my cup is empty and the man is laughing with my parents.

“I knew you would like it,” he says. “Would you like more?”

I nod my head and then say “Yes, please” when Mama gives me that look.

The man leaves again, but comes back with three cups of juice.

“Two for the adults, and a special one for Patty!” He says, putting them on the table.

They start to laugh again as I drink my new cup of juice. I guess I don’t need to make my own juice after all! I hope Mama and Daddy buy some of this juice to take home. I want to drink it with my lunch every day!

Umbra Institute


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