2 minute read


By Jo Clark


Leatrice Eiseman, author of ten books on color, says of orchid, “It is a captivating purple, one that draws you in with its beguiling charm.” We find the word “orchid,” first used in 1915 to specify a color. How did people live without an adjective for this shade??

It is a gentle shade of purple, created from blue, pink, and gray tones, taking its hue and name from the flower Orchidaceae. The color is said to inspire confidence, creativity, love, and joy. Orchid, selected as Pantone’s 2014 Color of the Year, is described as

“an enchanting harmony of fuchsia, purple, and pink undertones.”

I know—you’re thinking, “Yes, but this is a food and wine magazine—not a floral journal.” You’re right. But let me tell you—orchid may be the new green! Orchid can be found lined up in the farmer’s market; from eggplants to grapes to heirloom tomatoes, even fudge! You aren’t limited to flowers if you are looking for orchid-colored edibles.

Edible orchids vary from pale pink to magenta and add lovely accents to cocktails, salads, and desserts. The world’s only fruit-bearing orchid? The vanilla bean—it’s pretty enough to eat!

Orchid livens up neutrals such as white, beige, and yellow. Think of it as a fashion statement, not just a paint chip. Not only a designer’s or decorator’s tip, just look around at nature for confirmation! What a drab world this would be if this shade were not part of the rainbow!

Photos (Clockwise from top left): Orchid Orchid; Aviation Martini with Violet Syrup; Wisteria at Charlestowne Landing Lake; Eggplant at the Farmer's Market

Variety is the Spice of Life

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