Nutmeg comes from a very unique tree that actually produces two spices – nutmeg and mace. The scientific name of Nutmeg is Myristica fragrans. The aromatic Nutmeg tree is an evergreen that grows upwards of 66 feet and features fragrant flowers and brownish-yellow edible fruit that are approximately the size of a small peach. Nutmeg is the dried seed of this fruit and the nutmeg seed is surrounded by a bright red, lacy covering called mace (this is also known as mace blades or the aril).
During the Middle Ages, nouveau riche Europeans carried their own whole nutmegs and graters to dinner gatherings as a status symbol sign.