I remember back in the day when I taught nursery school, and each year, we’d ask the kids, ‘Where does orange juice come from?’ And we were invariably met with, ‘A Can. The Freezer,’ or some other variant [ask ‘em where money comes from…and you’ll always get, ‘A Machine.’]. We’d then proceed to make fresh squeezed o.j. with them. In Italy, where bottled fruit juices are the next best thing to drinking the actual fruit with a pour spout inserted, you know exactly where your juice comes from. Nothing comes closer to ambrosia than this.
So, it is not without some controversy that Italy’s government decided that orange or lemon drinks (aranciata) no longer has to include the actual fruit juice. As a staunch capitalist, I think this is wise. But, as someone who loves the pure juices without having them tainted with sugar, corn syrup and all of the other insidious ingredients which creep into American beverages, well, it’s a travesty. And the outcry has been huge.
One of my favorite columns, Lapis in fibula, from Epolis, penned by a satirist who calls himself Chicco Gallus weighed in on the subject. Here’s his take:
It’s just like an Aranciata – with Oranges
It is about to be permitted to sell orange flavored beverages without oranges, or rosé wines by simply mixing red and white wines together. It’s one of those curious laws that reenter into laws that everyone was happily living without.
I’ve never come across someone who was left horrified after having drunk an aranciata, only to be overcome with the horrible suspicion that inside, there might have been a trace of fresh squeezed something or other.
Foods proudly produced in order to avoid affecting those suffering from food allergies usually write, in bold letters, NO SALT!, Contains no glutens!, or Without fill in the blank. And obviously, they make you pay more for them.
Here we have instead the exact opposite taking affect:
It's up to the consumer to discover whether or not that which they just gulped is in some way related to what they perhaps originally wanted in the first place.
With the wine debacle, the issue is even more subversive; because, to make a rosé wine, you need an elaborate and costly system; cultivating the red grapes in a particular way. Mixing red and white wines together simply takes a split second.
In reality, however, this new way of making rosé even works in our favor: After all, up 'til now, to make a nice rosy wine out of your reds, all we needed to do was add a little tap water.
So now, we have to look forward to new permits of creative manufacturing, like, orange wine with no oranges, or fake aranciata rosé wine (all it takes is removing the fake yellow out of the fake arancione).
Heck – it could even turn into a new profession: not producing inventive beverages but, getting someone to drink them.