Sensory Week: Taste

May 16, 2014  Prompt #15

orangesTo wrap up Sensory Week, it’s our long-awaited taste prompt. To enrich this exercise, I’ve included other senses as well.  Tuck a napkin under your chin and let’s get started.



  1. Choose a fruit that you enjoy (or dislike) for this exercise. Other foods can work too; you may need to adjust the instructions. Follow the steps below, noting experiences, associations, and responses.
  2. Hold the fruit in your hand. Briefly describe its weight and texture.
  3. Smell the fruit. Does your mouth start watering? Puckering?
  4. Peel the fruit, stopping frequently to describe the experience, noting memories and questions that arise. If the fruit isn’t peel-able, skip this step or slice the fruit instead.
  5. Touch the fruit to your tongue. First impressions?
  6. Section or slice the fruit if needed, then take a small bite.  How do your tongue, lips, and mouth react? Describe the experience.
  7. Continue eating. Continue writing.

How This Prompt Can Strengthen Your Writing

  • Encourages you to write slowly and thoughtfully, since several steps are involved.
  • Helps you bring sensory details into your work.
  • Encourages association and memory recall.

Further Writing

  • Imagine a person eating this fruit for the first time. What would surprise them?
  • Describe how different people might approach eating a pineapple, pear, or banana. How does how they eat reflect who they are?

Variations for Writing Groups

  1. If the season is right (usually late summer or fall in the U.S.), try tasting and describing three different apple varieties.
  2. If available, compare, and describe eating an orange, tangerine, and blood orange. Or a standard lemon and a Meyer lemon. Or a grapefruit, orange, lemon, and lime. What do these different fruits conjure up for you?
  3. If available, try a fruit that is new to you. Some fruits I hadn’t eaten as a child include a star fruit (or carambola), horned melon (or kiwano), and even a fresh fig.

What did you think of this writing prompt? Share your thoughts.


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