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The Magic Is in the Hole

Dicembre 2007
Ciambelle, zeppole, bomboloni... in America si chiamano doughnuts e sono lo snack dolce per eccellenza. A Portland, città dei Simpson, c’è Voodoo Doughnut, vera e propria mecca delle delizie col buco. In tutte le salse.

di Kathleen Becker

File audio:

Hilary Witt
Hilary Witt

In addition to having given us Matt Groening, the man who created The Simpsons, Portland, Oregon is full of many bizarre tourist attractions. A fine example comes in the form of “Voodoo Doughnut” at 22 South-West Third Street. When you walk in you’ll see an oversize doughnut sculpture hanging on the wall. In the chiller cabinet big colorful doughnuts are waiting for customers. Open 24 hours a day, Voodoo Doughnut is the brainchild of two entrepreneurs and artists, Tres and Catdaddy.
Store manager Hillary Witt, who moved to Portland from southern California, explains how Tres and Catdaddy got the original idea:

Hilary Witt (Standard American accent):

They wanted to open a bar, basically, is how this... how it ended up... and they couldn’t get a liquor licence at the time, it was, like, really hard, and so they were like, “Well, let’s just do doughnuts!” And so they ended up going down to LA and went to Doughnut College, and decided to open up a doughnut shop, and wanted to do something a little bit different, and, you know, they kind of stayed with the bar idea and decided to be open all night, instead of during the day.


Prices for these hand-made doughnuts start at under a dollar and go up to nearly five dollars for the most elaborate creations. The menu is constantly changing. You still find lots of All-American ingredients, such as Oreo cookies or grape frosting, and often a good dose of sexual innuendo. Death also features on the Voodoo Doughnut menu. Staff will be more than happy to prepare a coffin full of doughnuts. Sometimes new bands play in the store, there are Swahili lessons and doughnut-eating competitions. And customers can even get married beneath a holy doughnut. Yet Voodoo Doughnut’s pride and joy is the Voodoo Doll, which comes with a stake through its little heart:

Hilary Witt:

The Voodoo Doll, ah, the blood-filled voodoo doll. So, it’s a raspberry-filled with chocolate-covered doughnut, and it’s... you know, it’s a good-sized doughnut! It’s so good, that the chocolate and the raspberry and little pretzel stick, you know, that kind of goes with the name. Catdaddy’s from Memphis, say, kind of the South, with the whole Voodoo thing, and so I think that’s kind of where, you know, the whole idea came from, you know. And, plus, they liked the name Voodoo, with all the ‘o’s in it. I think that worked out pretty well!

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when you walk in - quando entrate.

oversize ... hanging on the wall - gigantesca scultura di una ciambella appesa al muro.

chiller cabinet - frigorifero.

customers - clienti.

brainchild - invenzione.

liquor licence - licenza per vendere gli alcolici.

cookies - biscotti.

grape frosting - glassatura all’uva.

innuendo - sottintesi.

coffin - bara.

holy - consacrata.

pride and joy - fiore all’occhiello.

stake - palo.

raspberry-filled - con ripieno di lampone.

that worked out pretty well - ha funzionato piuttosto bene.