Reversed bergamot peel
Bergamot is a fragrant citrus fruit which, for some unknown, mysterious reason, grows only along the Ionian coast of the southernmost tip of the Province of Reggio Calabria.
Availing of age-old peasant know-how, our people produce this fruit, which may have arrived here with the colourful citrus-tree gardens imported by the Arabs. From generation to generation the bergamot continues to renew its magical pact with this place and its climate.
This thousand-year-old crop is now the basis of some very fine cosmetic, culinary and crafts products.
Bergamondo is a window on this magical world where the senses meet the charm of an ancient culture, the skill that artisans have handed down over time, the bouquets and colours of the earth, the creative equilibrium and knowledge underlying the distilled essences, gastronomic delicacies and unique cosmetic fragrances the bergamot yields.
The production of reversed bergamot peel
The production of reversed bergamot peel has remote roots and goes back to the peasant tradition of the Greek Calabrians. It is a technique where great patience and skill are required to remove and use the peel of this fruit to make objects of simple and ancient beauty that maintain the delightful scent of the fruit.
The ancient snuffbox.
In the nineteenth century the production of tobacco holders of all kinds, shapes and material was very popular. They were used to contain pipe tobacco or snuff. These boxes were also used among peasants. The reverse-bergamot-peel snuffbox is a small masterpiece of Calabrian popular art, which had remained almost forgotten until a few years ago, when the patient work of research and recovery by the parish priest of Varapodio, Don De Masi, brought this pretty object back and made it known again.
The original little bergamot-peel boxes
The little scented boxes are masterpieces of Calabrian handicraft, produced in the Bergarte workshop in Varapodio, which, thanks to some patient research, has recovered the ancient technique used to treat reversed bergamot peel.
These boxes, which, over time, retain the fragrance of the fruit and colours of the earth, may be used to hold small items of jewellery, sweets or any other object for which one wishes to provide a fragrant storage place.