Bergamot the world's most valuable citrus
Would you have imagined that the scent of Eau De Cologne was based on the exquisitely powerful oil of Bergamot?
Most commonly when we think of Bergamot, we think of Earl Grey Tea? The Black China tea that is softly infused with the oil of Bergamot.
Citrus bergamia - Bergamot, is a revered and highly valued fruit with a romantic and fragrant story that took the world by storm in the 1700’s.
Eau de cologne was created by parfumier extraordinaire Giovanni Maria Farina. Born in Piedmont Italy, he moved to Germany to perfect his craft and it was there that he melded the infused oil of bergamot and distilled alcohol with a magical genius, creating what was said to be “the scent of Italy in a bottle”. Named in honour of the town Cologne.
100 kilos of Bergamot fruit is required to generate 50 precious grams of distilled oil. The fruit is a natural cross between sour orange and lemon, and it came to Calabria,Italy mysteriously in the 1600’s and has been in commercial production ever since.
Back before modern extraction methods, the oil was gently pressed from the bergamot fruit by hand and sponge, with the fragrant oily pressings squeezed into glass phials.
Bergamot contains over 368 seperate chemical compounds and is super rich in antioxidants, ascorbic acids, polyprophenyls and flavoniods. It is revered as a true super food with extraordinary healing qualities. More of which you can read of here.
Considered one of the most valuable citrus of the world, it may be well worth a trip to the southern foot of Italy to visit the Bergamot groves, or a read of Helena Attlee’s book, the land where the lemon tree grows, or plant your own Bergamot tree. A relaxed, dark green leaved citrus tree that will burst into intoxicatingly fragrant blossom that yield to green, golden orbs, of perfumed fruit.