Bergamot oil is derived from the bergamot, a citrus fruit whose bitter, sour juice is nearly inedible, but whose skin holds the oil that flavors Earl Grey tea and aromatizes fragrances like Guerlain’s Shalimar.
And, now—adds just the right je ne sais quoi to Young American Ale House’s avocado toast.
Maria Hines and her exec chef (and Seattle Met Next Hot Chef, Class of ’13) Jason Brzozowy first started using bergamot oil at Agrodolce, at the suggestion of an Italian importer, and found they loved its floral notes and distinctive richness. At their brand new Ballard property, Young American Ale House, the bergamot oil appears with avocados, spiced pumpkin seeds, and micro sorrel on toast, as a substantial appetizer.
Diners will also find bergamot at the intimate Eden Hill—perhaps as bergamot curd, an intermezzo on the tasting menu; perhaps in a carrot sorbet along with roasted white chocolate.
Downtown at RN74, chef Ben Godwin will employ bergamot on his vegetarian tasting menu for New Year’s Eve, in an artichoke dish involving sunchokes, celery, and hazelnuts. Possibly it’ll show up in a cocktail too. It’s reportedly one of Godwin’s favorite winter ingredients.
And don’t forget about Stateside’s perennial amberjack crudo, embellished with chile, lime leaf powder, and a transportingly aromatic bergamot ice.