Pimenta officinalis, Pimenta dioica
|Illustration of twig, flowers, and fruits|
Allspice, also known as Jamaica pepper, myrtle pepper, pimenta, or pimento, is the dried unripe berry of Pimenta dioica, a midcanopy tree native to the Greater Antilles, southern Mexico, and Central America, now cultivated in many warm parts of the world. The name "allspice" was coined as early as 1621 by the English, who valued it as a spice that combined the flavours of cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove.
all + spice, as it was thought to combine the flavours of various other spices.
allspice (countable and uncountable, plural allspices)
- (uncountable) A spice; the dried and ground unripe fruit of Pimenta dioica, thought to combine the flavours of several spices, such as cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves.
- (countable) Pimenta dioica, an evergreen tree of tropical America with aromatic berries.
- (spice): Pimento
- (tree): Jamaica pepper