Ayala Moriel Parfums

News from the Nose

Happy Spring!!!

Blooming cherry trees by Vancouver Art Gallery, Vancouver, February 2010

Dear Fragrant Friends,

Hope this email finds you well and happy and enjoying the beautiful season of new beginnings!

In this newsletter:

  1. Happy Passover and Happy Easter!
  2. Tell-Alls from Hanami Tea Party March 21st
  3. “Aphro-Tea-Siacs” in Fresh Cup Magazine 
  4. “Make Sense of Scents” in Natural Solutions Magazine
  5. “Creating my Signature Scent, Naturally” – in Granville Magazine
  6. "Meet the Green Goddesses of Natural Perfumery" on FashionTribes.com
  7. Winner Announcement: Porotbello West Lucky Draw for Signature Perfume
  8. We Can Still Save Bloedel!!!
  9. Song of Songs: Poetic Perfume for Passover
  10. Upcoming Events & Markets

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1. Happy Passover and Happy Easter!

Spring in Jerusalem, April 2007

To all our dear customers, readers, friends and family - I would like to wish you a very happy Spring, Happy Easter, and a Happy Passover to all my fellow Jews who are celebrating. I hope you will enjoy this traditional spring cleaning and yeast-cleanse holiday ;-) and feel like you are truly freed of anything you don't need in your life, in order to make room for positive change and renewed energy! 

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2.Tell-Alls from Hanami Tea Party March 21st


In this modern and very laid-back tea ceremony, I have incorporated botanical symbolism from several cultures to create a contemporary tea celebration to welcome spring. The botanical symbolism was also included in the flower arrangement. The centerpiece at the tea table was this 4 piece bouquet of cherry blossoms, hyacinths, sprouted wheat and white magnolia.  We also celebrated with brewing four floral teas based on tea leaf in different stages of oxidation/fermentation: white tea with crystallized ginger and vanilla bean, green tea with dried ume blossoms, magnolia oolong and black rose congou tea.

More about the teas in the blog post about the spring-welcoming tea ceremony.


Hanami is a Japanese flower-viewing party, taken place under blooming trees in nature as well as urban Japanese gardens everywhere during the sakura peak blooming season.

Before I knew any better, my mental vision of hanami comprised of geishas and samurai (or just modern day people dressed up in kimono and obi) writing haiku poetry on rice paper under the cherry trees, playing the koto and performing chado ceremonies. I could not have been more far than the truth: Hanami is for the most part a picnic under the cherry trees, where everyone gets completely drunk with sake. An outdoors happy hour of sorts. The most popular spots for Hanami get packed pretty quickly, so companies and offices send their rookies to go early in the day and reserve a good spot while the more senior staff keep getting work done till the end of the day. By than, I heard, the rookies are quite thoroughly drunk and can be easily made fun of for the rest of the evening…

The custom of drinking sake under the cherry trees originates in Shinto (the native religion of Japan) tradition of making a sake offering to the spirits of the trees during the sakura season.

The weather that day was a fickle spring day, not nice enough to do a picnic (which is how a Hanami should be celebrated!). And in any case, drinking outdoors is illegal in Vancouver and I did not want to get into trouble with the authorities so I would have felt really guilty if it was a beautiful picnic day and had to keep everyone indoors for my tea brewing and perfume sniffing!

I love creating ambiance with small details, which sometime I can get carried away with. The napkins, for example, were almost too pretty to use (they were made of pearlescent paper!). I also burnt a Japanese ume incense before the guests arrived, and they could even smell it from the hallways. Another part of the ambiance was flowers, and lots of them: camelias, magnolias, freesias, hyacinths and, of course, cherry blossoms!

The Menue

1st Tier: Sushi & Savouries

Ume-Shiso Sushi

Avocado & Japanese Pickled Ginger Tea Sandwiches
Ginger-Carrot Tea Sandwiches
Cucumber-Wasabi Tea sandwiches
Kosho (Hot Green Pepper & Yuzu paste) Tea Sandwiches

The ume-shiso sushi was something I tried last summer at the sushi bar in K-Mart (the Korean market on Robson street, which is also where I get the perfect bread for the tea sandwiches). I wanted to order from them a bunch for the party, but they stopped making them (it is not exactly shiso season yet, so that's understandable). Thankfully, the konbiniya (aka Japanese convenience store) on Robson had some fresh shiso leaves, so I was able to try to mimic what the restaurant did (total failure, because I always put too much rice in my rolls, and also the seaweed would have gotten too soggy by the time the guests arrived; so I stopped myself after one roll). Instead, I invented these little nigiris, using the rice molds inmy daughter's sushi kit. I filled them with some ume paste and black sesame seeds, and wrapped them in shiso leaf, which remained fresh and pretty for hours. Yay!

As for the sandwhiches - the avocado was drizzled with yuzu juice to prevent it from discolouring. The wasabi makes a perfect accompaniment to cucumbers (just like horseradish and watercress), and is how I make my cucumber sandwiches for quite some time now; and the kosho, a hot paste of green peppers with aromatic yuzu, made for a piquiant sandwich like I've never tasted before. I've really enjoyed the tea-time-meet-Japanese cuisine adventure!

2nd Tier: Scones
Buckwheat Scones & Povidel (Eastern European Prune butter)

I tested these prior to the party with three different condiments/jams - ume (sour plum) paste (see above) and cherry & carnation jam, and povidel (prune preserve). The last choice seems to complement the buckwheat the best so that's how they were served in the end.

3rd Tier: Sweets

Sakuramochi (Cherry Blossom pastries)
Charisma Truffles - with matcha, spearmint and jasmine
Hanami Truffles - with ground tonka bean, lotus, tuberose and magnolia
Black Sesame Shortbread Cookies
Torti di Grano Saraceno (Northern Italian buckwheat and almond torte with raspberry filling).

Sake and a fine selection of teas were served, including white, green, oolong and black teas.

You can also read about the Hanami perfume presentation here

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3. “Aphro-Tea-Siacs” in Fresh Cup Magazine

The April issue of Fresh Cup Magazine  features an article titled APHRO-TEA-SIACS:  Exploring the sexy side of infusions by Steven Krolak. This is a quite extensive interview with me and with Dawna (the lovely lady who is responsible for my beautiful line of perfumed teas) about aphrodisiacs in perfume and tea, and my last Aphrodisiac Tea Party I hosted for my customers for Valentine's Day.

Click here to visit the online edition of the current issue (p. 46-51).


4. “Make Sense of Scents” in Natural Solutions Magazine

Read Make Sense of Scents on p. 31 of Natural Solutions Magazine for an interview with me and some perfume advice to make the switch to natural in your fragrance wardrobe. The article is by Jolene Hart, who is also the editor of Beauty is Wellness online magazine.

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5. “Creating my Signature Scent, Naturally” – in Granville Magazine

Visit Granville Sustainable City Living Magazine's Secret City for an article titled Creating my signature scent, naturally, in which Krista Eide describes her experience of creating a custom scent at Ayala Moriel Parfums studio.

What would your dream custom perfume smell like?

Tell us what you'd like your dream perfume to smell like by commenting on SmellyBlog, and enter to win your very own Signature Perfume by Ayala Moriel Parfums.

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6. "Meet the Green Goddesses of Natural Perfumery" on FashionTribes.com

Fashion Tribes features Ayala Moriel in an article by Michelyn Came titled “Meet The Green Goddesses of Natural Perfume”.  You can also win one of 2 minis of Ayalitta if you tweet about any of my perfume with the reference @ayalamoriel. 

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7. Winner Announcement: Porotbello West Lucky Draw for Signature Perfume

Sakura & highrise by Burrard Station, March 2010

Thank you to all of you who visited my booth at Portobello West this weekend! Those who signed the guest book were entered into a draw to win a Signature Perfume

And... We have a lucky winner: MAVIS HOPE!

Mavis, you will receive a 2-hour Olfactory Journey at Ayala Moriel Parfums Studio, to pick your favourite essences that will go into your custom perfume. The Olfactory Journey is an exploration of the pure essence used to create natural perfumes, including rare flower essences. This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, where you get to smell scents you've never knew existed and unlock memories from times past. 

The Olfactory Journey also includes treating you to some of our hand-rolled perfumed truffles and a fragrant pot of tea will be brewed especially for you on request. 

Looking forward to creating your custom scent!

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8. We Can Still Save Bloedel!!!

It is still not too late to donate to Bloedel - we still have a chance to save it from closing!

My contribution is proceeds from Frangipanni Gloves. We already raised $190 for the cause, and also had a donation box at Portobello West and will continue to fundraise in all our future events - so please chime in, every penny counts! The rest of the story below, if you haven't read it on the last newsletter. 

"It was one of those indecisive April days, alternating between cloudy and warm, and pouring rain. For a while, we sought refuge inside the glass dome that housed tropical birds & flowers. There, near the pink parrot that refused to have his pictures taken, I met a blooming frangipanni tree in Vancouver for the first time. You can imagine my happiness: frangipanni is one of my favourite flowers and I have many fond memories associated with its scent. I took with me this single blooming flower that fell off the tree, and savoured it for hours afterward, analyzing its aroma in my head, making notes in my journal as to how to capture its scent. The result is Frangipanni Gloves: a perfume that layers a whiff of frangipanni flowers with the leathery-powdery undertones of suede perfumed gloves of Victorian era. This tropical white floral perfume has an intoxicating yet delicate aroma, sweet and humid, underlined with suede-leather nuances and a hint of spice". (read the rest of the story behind Frangipanni Gloves here)

Proceeds go to the Bloedel Floral Conservatory in Queen Elizabeth Park in Vancouver. It is thanks to this wonderful tropical gem at the heart of our raincity that I was able to find a real, living frangipanni flower for reference. Unfortunately, the City of Vancouver has cut its funding to sustain the conservatory and it is scheduled to close March 1st, 2010. This will leave tens of tropical birds and plants homeless, and is a huge loss for the people of Vancouver!

When you purchase Frangipanni Gloves, you are also helping this cause. Frangipannin Gloves is offered for a limited time only, until March 1st, which is the scheduled date for closing Bloedel Floral Conservatory. For every bottle sold, $50 is donated to Bloedel Floral Conservatoryshut-down March 1st, 2010. ($30 for mini bottles).

If the fundraiser succeeds, and it will not close - Frangiapnni Gloves will remain in our regular collection and I will continue to donate money to Bloedel, so that we can continue to enjoy the scent of real living frangipanni flowers!

It can be purchased on Etsy or via Ayala Moriel Parfums.

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9. Song of Songs: Poetic Perfume for Passover

Marc Chagall's Song of Songs

The book of Canticles (aka Song of Solomon or Song of Songs) is traditionally read on the morning of the Sabbath during Passover. Hence, my perfume bearing that name is particularly appropriate for this time of year!

I created Song of Songs perfume using the ancient perfumes mentioned in that book, including agarwood, spikenard root, oils of myrrh and frankincense oils, and labdanum absolute, which together form a resinous and woody base; a bouquet of roses (from Morocco, Turkey and Bulgaria) for the heart, and saffron absolute at the top, which makes it very exotic and unusual. At some point I had some hyacinth absolute in my organ, which I used for the heart as well, but this is long gone. The hyacinths stand for the lilies mentioned in the poem, and which according to my research were what the Song of Songs refers to as "Lily of the Valley" (convillarias do not grow in Israel or anywhere in the Middle East).

Song of Songs is honeyed, resinous and exotic and has a very profound impact on my mind when I wear it. It makes me feel connected to the ancient civilizations where my ancestors came from. There. the Orient and the Occident unite through veins of caravans transporting spices, medicine and wisdom. Like the poem it was inspired by, the perfume sits comfortably between the sacred and the profane (despite the fact that the poetry in the book of Canticles is very erotic and more than just suggestive, it is considered by the Jews to be the holliest one in the bible). 

Although I created it before knowing anything about Arabian perfumery or smelling any Arabian or Indian attars (Song of Songs was created in 2002, just about a year after I started my journey in the art of perfumery) - it is a very "Middle Eastern" perfume, similar in some ways to the Arabian attars I smelled at the perfume bazzar at the souk years later, but far more pure and intense with its true attar of rose, spikenard and agarwood and all the rest. 

10. Upcoming Events & Markets

Ume (plum) blossoms on Haro @ Bute (that's the adress of Ayala Moriel Studio!)

Sunday, April 25th, 12-6pm: Porotbello West Art + Fashion Market @ The Rocky Mountaineer Station

Saturday & Sunday, May 1 & 2: Make It Vancouver @ The Croatian Cultural Centre

Sunday, May 9th: Mother's Day Afternoon Tea (more details TBA)

And of course, you are alwasy welcome to drop by at the studio!

Warm regards,


Ayala Moriel Parfums
Tel.: (778) 863-0806
Studio address: #314-1230 Haro Street, Buzz #295,Vancouver, BC
New hours: Mon-Fri 8:00am-3:00pm; Closed Saturdays; Sunday 12:30-3:30 by appointment only
Mailing address: PO Box 93589 Nelson Park, Vancouver, BC, V6E 4L7

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