Black truffle or Périgord truffle

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Black truffle or Périgord truffle, the exalted Tuber melanosporum, is THE black truffle of truffledom. (As mentioned earlier, despite the appelation “Périgord”, it does not grow only in France or limit itself to that region in France.) “Black diamond” is one traditional description that captures the appearance of its distinctive dark-faceted surface—and its price. Its unique bouquet is rich, unaggressive, and highly variable. I have inhaled the scents of violets, roses, and other flowers; of sweet pork, of fresh earth, of cocoa, and—if the truffle was overripe—of cheese, soy sauce, and smoke.