Written by Kianna Best on Oct 28, 2022. Posted in Awards and Festivals

Cultures come together in Netflix’s From Scratch

Tembi Locke’s Netflix adaptation of her New York Times best-selling memoir brings a taste of Italy to streaming screens in From Scratch. From Florence to the quaint towns of Sicily and all the way to Los Angeles, the story of love, heart break and family strength is wrapped up in the warmth of the cross continental regions.


“To share it felt very vulnerable, but I wrote [the memoir] from my heart, and this is another moment where I’m just going to take the leap from my heart,” Tembi told Netflix’s Tudum in an interview.



From Scratch made its appearance on Netflix on 21 October, and like many others, I finished the eight tearful yet heart-warming episodes in a mere couple of days. Based on Tembi Locke’s personal journey in From Scratch: A Memoir of Love, Sicily and Finding Home, the series follows the ups and downs of new relationships, cultural differences and the dividing nature of health issues.



Amy, played by Zoe Saldaña, gets in a whirlwind relationship with Sicilian chef Lino, played by Eugenio Mastrandrea, and the two become entangled in a rollercoaster of emotions. As much of a family affair as the show is, Locke’s sister, Attica, known for role as co-writer for Ava Duvernay’s When They See Us, serves as showrunner.



Produced by Locke herself and Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine production company, the who cast and crew travelled to sceneries on location, not only to capture the beauty of the locations but also their essence.  Shooting in the midst of he pandemic, production took place in isolated cobbled streets and picturesque cliffsides throughout Florence and Sicily.



As Amy and Lino navigate the touristic cityscapes, and the American discovers her husband’s Sicilian hometown, the culture seeps through the screen and straight to the audience. Travelling to Los Angeles, another on location spot, the film continues to possess that quality, with the visitation from Lino’s parents, to homecooked meals, and event the joyous occasion of watching a real football game. However, transcending culture is the theme of family. Whilst the contrast of American and Italian culture is prevalent, the story marries the two, as they find common ground in the love they share for one another.


Images courtesy of Jessica Brooks/Netflix 


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