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Tuesday, December 3, 2013


Seems there's more than one kind of Bergamot. Condensed from three articles in Wikipedia:

    The Bergamot orange is a fragrant fruit the size of an orange, with a yellow colour similar to a lemon.  It is commercially grown in southern Calabria (the toe of the Italian boot), where more than 80 percent are produced. It is also grown in southern France and in Côte d'Ivoire (Africa) for the essential oil and in Antalya in southern Turkey for its marmalade. The fruit is not grown for juice consumption.
    Citrus bergamia is a small tree which blossoms during the winter. The juice tastes less sour than lemon, but more bitter than grapefruit. The distinctive aroma of bergamot is most commonly known for its use in Earl Grey tea.
    The bergamot orange is unrelated to the herbs known as bergamot or wild bergamot, Monarda didyma and Monarda fistulosa, which are in the mint family.
It is sometimes confused with (but is not the same as) Citrus medica (citron, the yellow fruit of which is also known as etrog).
    Monarda didyma (crimson beebalm, scarlet beebalm, scarlet monarda, Oswego tea, or bergamot) is an aromatic herb in the family Lamiaceae, native to eastern North America from Maine west to Ohio and south to northern Georgia. Its odor is considered similar to that of the bergamot orange (the source of bergamot oil used to flavor Earl Grey tea).

Wild bergamot or Bee Balm[1] (Monarda fistulosa) is a wildflower in the mint family widespread and abundant as a native plant in much of North America.[2] This plant, with showy summer-blooming white flowers, is often used as a honey plantmedicinal plant, and garden ornamental.[3] The species is quite variable, and several subspecies or varieties have been recognized within it.

This HMS Bergamot was a Flower-class corvette that served in the Royal Navy during WWII.

I put this together a while back because someone, probably one of my far flung correspondents, had mentioned it and being as it was a slow news day I investigated. Roberta X mentioned it today, and I said, wait a minute, I've got some bookmarks on this. So I drug 'em out and here we are.

P.S. I don't like Earl Gray tea. I like plain old black (orange pekoe). I also like Constant Comment, if someone else is buying.

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