New: Aqua Mirabillis Collection

Aqua Mirabillis Series
I wasn't planning on releasing any new perfumes this year. But this kinda just happened, as a result of the wonderful and inspiring collaboration with Jullius Craft Distillery. Some of these fragrances were created a long time ago but were never added to the online store, such as the Agua de Florida (Florida Water) I made way back in 2013, and the Aqua Pistachia (mastic lentsik waters), which I created in 2018, after the inspiring Mastic Magic workshop I held here at the studio with Dan Riegler of Apothecary's Garden.

So without further adieu, I present to you an Aqua Mirabillis Collection of fragrant eaux: Cleansing and purifying waters, inspired by Aqua Mirabillis formulations from the time before perfumery separated from medicine, and the pharmacy was fragrant and redolent of healing herbs.  

These Medieval "Miracle Waters" were the first alcohol-based perfumes in Medieval Europe. Citrus peels, along with astringent herbs, were tinctured into what was called then “Aqua Mirabillis” AKA Miracle Water – were used both internally as medicine, and externally as disinfectant, for relieving sore muscles or simply as a substitute for bathing. Inspired by these ancient concoctions, and the abundance of healing plants in the Mediterranean wilderness surrounding the new studio in Clil, our collection of Aqua Mirabillis was born. These are perfumes for external use only, featuring ingredients rarely found in perfumery, which I grow, harvest, forage and tincture all by hand in the traditional old ways. Ingredients such as mastica, varthemia, vitex, wild oregano, thyme, sage, mint and more find their way into these fine fragrances that create a sense of well-being and connection to the Earth. 

Agua de Florida

Spanish fro Florida Waters, these mean "Flower Water", due to the higher proportion of lavender relative to the European-style Eau de Cologne, as well as some rosewater. Other New World botanicals include lime zest, cinnamon bark and clove buds. And to give it a local, Galilee twist: Mediterranean lavender, AKA Spanish Lavender (Lavandula stoechas) tincture from my herb garden, Grapefruit blossoms from my own orchard lend their sensuous allure. And a hint of tobacco for its sacred and protective properties. Use these Agua Florida to freshen up during the hot summer months, and in ceremony for purification at the end of a healing ceremony which involved release of pain, grieving, tension and general heaviness. 

Aqua Pistachia 

Mastic resin is the original chewing gum, and is used to flavour Middle Eastern ice creams and desserts; the leaves also are beneficial for oral hygiene but also prevent ulcers and have myriad of health benefits and medicinal uses, including uterine health. But most of all they are the most refreshing fragrance around. They smell forest-like without having a single pine needle in them. What I tried to recreate with this scent is the icy, brisk scent of hail on a cold winter morning in the Galilee. There are no words to describe the smell of the mastic bushes when they clash with these icy forms of precipitation. So I will let Aqua Pistachia speak for itself. 

Aqua Akka

Cleansing and purifying waters, inspired by Jullius Distillery's Akko Gin - a wild gin that is made entirely of local botanicals indigenous to the Western Galilee. To translate it into a fragrance, have combined several green, leafy botanicals that I find while roaming the Western Galilee and Mount Meron. Some traditional to gin, such as juniper berries; and others completely out-of-the-box, such as vitex berry and myrtle leaves. Cedar from the Morocco is here to replace Cedar of Lebanon, one of my favourite trees and destination while hiking on Mount Meron. Finally, a floral element, without which a perfume can hardly exist: handcrafted grapefruit blossom tincture from my own organic orchard, giving it body as well as a certain earthy sensuality. 

May Meron (Mt. Meron Waters) 

Mt Meron is a holy mountain in the Western Galilee, the second highest peak in all of Israel. Oak forests and regal Cedars of Lebanon grace its evergreen slopes, and its peak is usually shrouded in clouds, fog and mystery. It is home to unique vegetation, some plants that are found nowhere else in the country, which grow on a bed of quartz crystals, nonetheless. 
May Meron are cleansing and purifying waters, made in the tradition of Aqua Mirabillis - the miracle waters of Medieval Europe, in the early days after the discover of alcohol distillation. This fragrance is inspired by an autumn pilgrimage to Mt. Meron, which is abundant with wild medicinal herbs, Medronho berries, and saffron crocuses. These healing waters were born out of a collaboration with Jullius Craft Distillery and are the perfume interpretation of the magical and healing Jullius Bitters, which are redolent of wild herbs such as white mint (Micromeria fruticosa), sage, myrtle and mastic. 
Apply these Mt. Meron Waters just as you would any perfume, as well as in rituals for their protective, grounding, warming qualities, or for purification at the beginning or end of a healing ceremony. 

"And the scent upon the waters...": Upcoming Workshop with Jullius Distillery

Aqua Mirabillis Workshop with Jullius Craft Distillery
Coming soon: A spiritual (pun intended) encounter between the alcohol and perfume worlds.

Experience the Galilee's indigenous botanicals through the aromas and flavours in both libations by Jullius Craft Distillery and fragrant concoctions by Ayala Moriel Parfums.

We will return to the defining moment in history when the worlds of alchemy and herbalism split from Aqua Mirabillis (drinkable and wearable fragrant alcoholic concoctions used for both medicine for body and soul, and as a beauty product), into two different crafts – the distillation of potable spirits and the concoctions of perfume for its beauty alone.

During this special evening two of the region's original and pioneering alchemists, the master distiller Joov Har Gil and master perfumer Ayala Moriel will talk about their unusual and magical craftsmanship and demonstrate the continuity between the craft of Eaux de Cologne (aromatic and refreshing alcohol-based fragrance) and the craft of DeVie (pure spirit distilled from citrus, grape pomace and other local fruit).

We will also discover unusual aromatic plants, and will try to make perfumes and alcoholic beverages – one-of-a-kind and unique collaboration for that night – that you will of course take home with you.

Number of participants: 10-14

Price: 180 NIS per participant


Not child friendly

RSVP: 0504378866

This event is part of Western Galilee Now's Winter Festival 2019.


Summary of Citrus Week Spring 2018

Citrus Week, Spring 2018, Clil
Summery of Citrus & Cologns + Lab 101 Course (April 22-26, 2018)
Citrus week began with scratch & sniff of real fresh citrus fruit, picking lemony and refreshing herbs from the garden, lots of sniffing, and lots of delicious tea breaks.
Citrus Week, Spring 2018, Clil
Once we start mixing, the table fills up with fragrant vials and the whole studio smells like Eau de Cologne!
Citrus Week, Spring 2018, Clil

Field Studies: Exploring the medicine garden by my studio, and finding inspiration, which is later on developed into a perfume brief.

Citrus Week, Spring 2018, Clil

Citrus Week, Spring 2018, Clil

Citrus Course, Clil, Spring 2018
Visiting Jullius Craft Distillery: The first of its kind in Israel, using cutting edge technology to preserve the most delicate aromas found in grapes, citrus and other fruit.
This is the special still that produces fine Etrog Eau de Vie, Tangerine Eau de Vie, Marc (out-of-Italy grappa) from fine local grapes.
Jullius Distillery
Joov explaining to the class how alcohol is made, how the still works (it's an advanced version of a column still that cools the distillates more efficiently than the previous generation, and therefore preserves the aroma much better).
Jullius Distillery
These juniper berries are just one of the local ingredients used to make the pure, ethereal Akko Gin. This is the only gin in the world which uses these types of berries, which are endemic to Mount Meron and the Golan Heights, and to this Joov adds many fragrant, fresh local plants, including mastic, etrog and tangerine peel, each ingredient distilled separately and later on the distillates are blended and fine tuned. The process of making this unique gin is on and of itself like perfume making.
Juniper Berries
There is always time for more tea... And delicious vegan food by Hagit Lidror who nourished our body and soul during this week.
Citrus Week, Spring 2018, Clil

Display of the various citrus perfumes and eau de colognes we've studied this week.
Citrus Week, Spring 2018, Clil

Absolute Angelica

Angelica Kult, originally uploaded by Jari Kaariainen.

As a preparation for the first class in the Botanical Alchemy (about the origins of aromatics), I have set to prepare some aqua mirabilis for demonstrating a liquor that can be worn as a perfume (or vice verse). The only recipe I found was for Carmelite Water. However, the recipes were vague (using measurements such as pinches or no measurements at all!), plus I had a shortage in lemon balm leaves. So I decided to modify the recipe to my liking (and limitations).

It went like this:

Carmelite Water
1 cup lemon blam (dried or fresh)
½ cup dried angelica root
zest of 1 lemon
2 tsp. coriander
1 tsp white pepper
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp nutmeg (ground)
1 cinnamon stick
5 cloves
750 ml vodka
500 ml orange flower water

- Crush the spices in mortar and pestle
- Add all the ingredients (except the orange flower water)to the vodka and let it mature for 2-3 weeks
- Filter through coffee filter or a fine cheescloth
- Add the orange flower water
- Let mature for another week
- Serve or wear!

Absolute Angelica, originally uploaded by Ayala Moriel.

I will let you know later how it turned out after maturation and filtration.

4711 Echt Kölnisch Wasser

4-711, originally uploaded by cool_colonia4711.

As mentioned earlier, the earliest alcohol based perfumes were the Aqua Mirabillis – the miracle water taken both internally and externally. The most famous of them all, even if not necessarily the best, is 4711 Echt Kölnisch Wasser.

The story
about how this perfume formula came to Muelhens’ (the founder of 4711) hands has become a cliché: in 1792, a Carthusian monk gave this formula of Aqua Mirabillis to Muelhen and his bride as a wedding gift, asking only that they will treat it with the regard it deserved. Muelhens did not underestimate its value, and founded a company to manufacture this formula, in the city of Koln (Cologne) in Germany. In 1796, when the city was occupied by the French, all the houses on the streets were numbered, and the house of Muelhens’ factory was numbered 4711. In 1875 this number was trademarked as the company’s name.

It is hard to say what is it that made the perfume so successful: whether if it clever marketing or a true genious of the fragrance itself, or, alternatively, a karmic blessing from the monk who created it. But all we know is that 4711 has become a staple in almost any household. My grandmother (born in Berlin, 1924) recalls her both her grandmother and mother using it. I also never heard her complain that the fragrance have changed. So perhaps there wasn’t any significant change in the formula, although I won’t be surprised if some synthetic fixatives have made it in. I wouldn’t drink it now, that’s for sure…

eau de cologne automat, originally uploaded by deedeee.

As for the scent itself – nowadays it seems neither particularly interesting nor original. It’s a simple, refreshing citrus cologne centered around neroli and petitgrain, which are the key notes here. It is cool and refreshing, with a hint of honeyed sweetness from the nerli, further accentuated by the sweetness of orange and bergamot top notes. Yet, it also has a distinctive astringent, dry and almost minty quality from the petitigrain and the herbal notes of rosemary and lavender. The base is mostly sandalwood and musk, which explains why I never took on to liking 4711 personally. Sandalwood smells terrible on my skin, particularly when paired with neroli. If your skin doesn’t suffer this bias, this would be probably the most valuable staple for hot summer months, as it is sold for very decent price and can be easily found almost in any drugstore, and in Germany you an even find these in an automatic vending machines! You can even still get the Eau de Cologne in those huge original vast of 800ml, where it definitely looks more like a drink than a toiletry. Salut!

07B_5506, originally uploaded by skintype.

  • Page 1 of 2
  • Page 1 of 2
Back to the top