This morning Manami and I met at the Starbucks in Zushi for our English session. During our conversation, she asked me if I was familiar with Nagano Purple – a type of grape. No, I wasn’t. She explained to me that Nagano Purple is a grape grown in Nagano. Nagano is about a four hour drive from where we live. The 1998 Winter Olympics were held in Nagano. Also, we took a trip last December to Nagano to see the snow monkeys. 

Back to Nagano Purple grapes. The grapes are plump, delicious, and very special when in season. She also explained that the best way to eat the grapes is to peel them. Peel a grape? I commented on that being a very tedious chore and asked why. She said it made them taste better. 

After our session, we went next door to the grocery store. She showed me the Nagano Purple and insisted (in a very kind manner) on purchasing a cluster for Dave and me. You can tell by the packaging, they are very special grapes. 

The grapes were wrapped in a paper/plastic bag and then set in a plastic dish. The pink foam protected them from being bruised. 

This evening, I unwrapped the grapes and tried them. Wow. They were delicious   Ginormous purple grapes without seeds. Juicy and sweet. 

I decided to give peeling them a try to see if it made the grapes taste better. I tasted them and felt they tasted less acidic without the peel. Donning my scientific research lab coat, I conducted a blind taste test on Dave. He also agreed the peeled grape tasted noticeably better. This very scientific experiment proved Manami correct and taught me (yet again) to listen to the advice of my wise Japanese friend. 

I know you’ve heard me say, “Nothing says love like fresh cut fruit.” I probably need to amend my saying to include freshly peeled grapes. A tedious task that takes love and enjoyment to a whole new level.