Ray Bradbury passed away today, leaving many science-fictional works behind (27 novels and 600 short stories to be exact). His one sort of autobiographical novel though was called Dandelion Wine. The main character is Douglas Spaulding, a 12-year-old boy whose grandfather makes dandelion wine during the summer.
Most people think of dandelions as weeds, but the Spauldings turn them into wine and use it as a medicine in winter. So in the book, symbolically it’s about how things that adults look at as annoying are seen as magical by a kids.
Dandelion wine is made with dandelion petals, citrus fruit and yeast among other ingredients. I’ve never had it but it’s a rustic, medium-alcohol wine. If you want to try to make it, here’s a recipe!
Bradbury was actually working with producer Mike Medavoy (who did Black Swan) on a film adaptation of his book – we’ll see what happens with it now, but it would be a nice postscript to an imaginative life.