11 December 2013 by Mr. P. Andrew Taylor
Here it is yet again, that time of year when our produce markets abound with celestial citrus fruits. Fresh, floral, fragrant, family Rutaceae - your bergamia, your paradisi, your aurantium and of course my dear heart’s namesake, clementine… terpene- rich oils, hesperidium heavy with lith, and locule laden with liquid gold. Ardent awareness of agrumi revives, with daily introduction to its intoxicatingly- perfumed zests.
I confess: my devotion to its impeccable and utterly ubiquitous nature seasonally ebbs with autumn, when the necessitous force of vitis provisionally usurps my deliberation. But in my remissness, a cyclic obsession quietly germinates…
December comes and I am again reminded that grape berries, while occupying nearly all of my waking efforts in the autumn months, are but one narrow slice of the fruit spectrum. Atop my present fulcrum (grape harvest on the one side, citrus season on the other) creative visions flourish. From simple sangria, to infinitely complex vermouth, the marriage of these two titans, vinifera and citrus, couldn’t be more flawless. Indeed, it is a congress upon which I rely to communicate so much of my life’s perspective. My canvass, my stage, my pen and ink… of all the creative materials at my disposal, these two are the foundation. So, with the onset of Winter’s cold looming, and nascent wines comfortably coopered away, I will seek safe haven in the harbors of citrus, reacquainting myself with the familiar, and shamelessly searching out new hybrids with hidden nuances.