The first time I saw Georgian berry spoons, I remember taking a good look at one, flipping it over to look at the marks, and then staring at it in utter incomprehension. It looked so…strange. What was it? Was there a whole sub-genre of Georgian silver I’d never heard of?!?
Georgian Berry Spoons
To set the stage, remember that Georgian silver is generally noted for its simple silhouette and restrained design. It’s not ‘frilly’ silver.
Berry spoons totally blow that low-key aesthetic out of the water.
For those of you who have not run across one, or realized what you were seeing at the time, Georgian berry spoons are literally Georgian silver spoons, of any size, from teaspoons up to large serving pieces, with ornate repousse work done in the bowl and almost always elaborate etching and design on the handle. Frequently, the bowl has been goldwashed — for good measure, I suppose.
The best thinking on these fascinating hybrids is that they are a Victorian update of Georgian silver. It’s another form of recycling silver. In this case, though, the original piece has not been melted down, but instead, re-worked.
The bowls of these spoons are filled with fruit, not just berries, as the name implies…pears, melons, and other fruit also appear. The edges of the bowls are ruffled and scalloped. The handles are chased and engraved. And, finally, what Victorian-era lily would be complete without a dollop of gilding?
How to use it?
The spoons are showy pieces. As they very rarely are sold in ‘sets’…and by sets I mean multiple pieces with the identical pattern…they are best used as solo stars.
The two spoons shown in my photos are teaspoons, and they seemed a natural fit for use as serving spoons for a Meyer Lemon, Prosecco, and Limoncello jam I made a few weeks ago. It just wouldn’t be winter if I wasn’t having my annual fit of lemon mania!
If you would like the recipe for the jam…it’s a bit long…drop me an email or a note in the comments and I’ll get it to you. I think it’s worth the effort as it tastes of sunshine, which I’m desperately craving this long, dreary winter.
Here is the recipe for the Meyer Lemon, Prosecco, and Limoncello Jam. Just click to get to a printer-friendly version.