The round earthy scent of sage is a smell that fills me with nostalgia for the warmth of summer days. It conjures memories of walking through the herb garden with my mum, plucking soft downy sage leaves and pressing them between our fingers to release the fragrance. It also reminds me of balmy evenings spent working in a restaurant in Italy, where I became a favourite of the revered Nonna Assunta, who ran the kitchen with rolled up sleeves and an enormous pinafore. With a knowing wink, she would sneak me a bowl of freshly made pumpkin pasta, lightly sautéed in butter and sage. To this day, the smell of sage reminds me of the warm comfort of exploring my childhood home’s garden, and my home away from home in the plains of Emilia Romagna.

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