I fell in love with fruit trees a few years ago. While the trees we have are at a season of infancy (the majority aren’t bearing any fruit), my favorite type, at this point, is citrus. Why citrus? The range of flavors might be enough of a reason (sweet, subacid blends), and the invigorating smell of the oils being released during peeling helps support that decision. But what pushes me over the edge has to do with the season they’re usually ripe…the winter. In the gloom and cold of winter, outdoor vegetation lacks life, hibernating until the warmer months. Then citrus trees come in at winter’s peak, adorned with their evergreen bed of leaves that provide the vigorous backdrop for their decorative, spherical symbols of life in warm colors that are only matched by the spectrum provided by sunrises and sunsets. My reasoning extends beyond the taste of citrus…it’s about the whole experience.
Speaking of experience, I’ve been wanting to attend the annual citrus taste test through the UC Lindcove Research and Extension Center in central CA for some time, but it’s always in December, which is typically a busy month for most (Christmas, cold season, etc.). Add all the birthdays in our family and all the time is used up. At the last minute, I’m thankful we were able to make the trip up this year!
We were able to taste HUNDREDS of varieties of citrus that Saturday morning; our mouths were drunk on the zesty flavor of citrus! As you can imagine, it was a memorable way to celebrate my birthday!