Acqua di Parma have launched a new limited edition fragrance for the Summer, Bergamotto di Calabria La Spugnatura. As with all the fragrances in the Blu Mediterraneo Collection, they each take inspiration from a specific part of the Italian Mediterranean, the origin for this fragrance being the beautiful bergamot fields of Calabria.
It is here where a special and rare process of juice extraction by hand is used; “La Spugnatura”. Practiced by only a few artisans in the world, the bergamot essence is manually extracted in this fascinating traditional process, a true art which requires time and skilful, precise gestures. A true art which requires time and skilful, precise, delicate gestures.
The artisan cuts each fruit in two equal halves with a well-sharpened knife. Then, using a utensil in the shape of a spoon called “cavatore”, they separate the skin from the pulp. Immediately after, the bergamot rinds are manually rubbed on sea sponges which thus absorb all the essence. In the final phase, the artisan squeezes the sponges full of essential oil with precise movements inside a terracotta container, in order to collect the precious scented liquid. The limitedness and therefore the uniqueness of the essence depend on the human production capacity. Two artisans manage to go through between 75 to 100 kg of fruit in an hour and at least 200 kg are required to obtain one kilogram of essential oil.
It is then housed in a beautifully hand finished porcelain bottle in the deep blue colour, embellished with beautiful golden bergamot fruits. The bottle is an artisan production and wholly characterised by the re-use of the water and the waste materials according to the principles of the circular economy, besides the natural mineral components of which it was made, produce a non porous and non-polluting material for mankind and for the environment. The long process starts with the production of the plaster mould in which the porcelain mix is poured manually such that it takes up the iconic Art Déco form. The mould is rotated several times on itself to ensure that the mix adheres to the sides and is then turned upside down to extract the extra mix. At this point, the bottle is left to dry for 30-40 minutes before being extracted from the mould in solid form.
For the final touch, the artisanal application of the embellishment which is then set by baking the bottle for a second time. On the blue background, the marvellous golden bergamot fruits stand out in white and golden reflections.
The fragrance is available exclusively at John Lewis and on johnlewis.com priced at £124 for 100ml and will be available nationwide from 1st May.