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Perfumes from the Orchard (Besamim me'ha'Bustan) + April Giveaway



Smadar picked this beautiful bouquet from her garden and orchard - an arrangement of seasonal fragrant flowers from trees, bushes and shrubs which were the inspiration for the evening titled Besamim me'ha'Bustan (Perfumes from the Orchard) and which took place on March 19th at the restaurant Smadar be'Clil in my home village in Israel's scenic Western Galilee.

It was both a pleasure and honour to co-host a night of perfume, desert and wine pairing with Smadar Yardeni of Smadar be'Clil and Yaniv from Lotem Winery. And the response form the guests and audience at the event has so much exceeded my hopes and expectations I am still feeling warm and fuzzy inside reminiscing about that beautiful night. The reason it took me so long to post about how it went can be attributed to traveller's wi-fi woes, as well as prolonged case of jet lag. But neither has diminished my memory from a most fine night spent with very lovely people, both on the hosting and the guest side.


Here's Smadar on the morning of the event, with the lavender & Earl Grey creme brûlée she's prepared in taste-size portions inside Turkish coffee cups. These were creamy and delicious, the caramelization process she did in the process of cooking the custard gives these brûlée a hint of honey.



Once I set the table with my mini-display (nothing too fancy, as it was all carried in my suitcase along everything else I needed for three weeks abroad) - it was time to taste the beautiful wines Yaniv brought with him from Lotem Winery. We selected three wines from Lotem for the pairing, plus one white wine from Kishor Winery: a lovely, citrusy-floral Savant Viognier, to go with the vegan malabi (based on coconut cream and flavoured with orange flower water). Note to self: an evening that starts with a glass of organic wine  can only be a happy one.


The event was structured as an olfactory and culinary symphony with 6 acts around 5 desserts that was inspired by seasonal ingredients, and was complemented by 6 perfumes, 4 wines and 2 teas. In each "section"  the guests experienced raw materials in their essential oil (or absolute) form, then smell them within a perfume, taste them in a dessert, and enjoy a complementary beverage (either tea or wine, or both).

We opened the evening with rose-tinged marzipans, handmade by Smadar, paired with fresh Charisma tea (loose leaf jasmine plus fresh herbs from Smadar's garden) and Vivace - Lotem's fine rose wine, which is extremely light and unusually on the dry side. I then spoke about two familiar yet fascinating ingredients: mint and almond, and let the guests smell essential oils of both, and also perfumes that are related to the subject: Charisma (which includes spearmint) and Hanami (inspired by cherry blossoms - which are not unlike the almond blossoms that were in bloom still last month).


Next came the fantastic creme brûlée I told you about earlier. Everything was beautifully served among sprigs of blooming lavender, and the individual Turkish coffee cups were a perfect size to serve such a decadent treat. I then let the guests smell essential oils of both lavender and bergamot and spoke about the connections these have via chemistry and their presence in the ever so popular Earl Grey tea. We smelled Lovender perfume at the end of this section.

The third part was spicy and warm, with vegan ginger mini muffins, studded with crystallized ginger inside, and served alongside dainty little teacups of piping hot soy milk chai. We smelled spice oils, with primary focus on ginger and cardamom (which are botanical relatives) and spoke about spices that are "warm" versus spices that are "cool". We also smelled Zangvil perfume, of course.



Now we took a little intermission from the desserts, and experienced Sonore - Lotem's bold Shiraz wine, accompanied our "tasting" of anything rosy: we experienced rose otto and absolute, as well as Cabaret perfume - a demonstration of rose and musk.  Yaniv explained about the origin of this grape, from Shiraz in Persia, which tied in beautifully to the origins of rose (Rosa centifolia or May Rose is native to Persia as well). I also tied it with the fondness of Muslims to musk and roses, and the symbolism of roses in Sufi poetry.



The highlight of the evening was one of the most beloved ingredients of all: orange blossom. We first experienced it in the vegan malabi (based in coconut cream) alongside the beautiful Savant Voigner from Kishor - which highlighted the citrusy notes, and even the petitgrain-like character of the orange flower water (something that my brother Yotam, who was among the guests in the event, pointed out).  We smelled different types of orange blossoms - orange flower water, orange flower absolute and neroli.



The grand finale was the chocolate mousse that was flavoured with orange blossom absolute and wild orange oil, topped with candied kumquat slices (from Smadar's orchard, of course). We paired this with the stunning Nebiolo, an aromatic yet light Italian varietal with floral characteristics and definite cassis flavours. And we concluded with smelling Zohar perfume - which went beautifully with all this luscious gorgeousness and the good mood that was already in the room went up even a few more notches.

I truly hope to create more events in the future with Smadar - it feels like this is just the beginning of a great friendship!

Last but not least, because this is the first day of April, it's time to announce this monthly giveaway: Leave a comment on this post, with your guess as to which flowers were in Smadar's beautiful bouquet - and enter to win a mini of Cabaret!

Scent Event: Mandy Aftel at Cacao in PDX


Attention Portlanders: Mandy Aftel of Aftelier Perfumes, author of the new book Fragrant will be in PDX tomorrow night, Thursday at Cacao Chocolate Shop from 5-6pm. 
They have divine chocolate from small-batch makers, and it's also the only place that sells her Chocolate Body Oil and Cacao perfume! 

Mandy will be talking about her new book, as well as serve chocolates flavoured with her Chef Essences. More details on Facebook, where you can also RSVP and invite all your chocaholic friends. There will also be a lucky draw to win a Chocolate Saffron body oil and a Cacao perfume mini.


Where:
414 SW 13th Ave, Portland, OR 97205
 

When: 
Thursday, December 18th, 5-6pm. 

For additional information contact:
info@aftelier.com 

 (503) 241-0656

Night At The Library of Scents



Celebrate the holidays with Ayala in this last special event of 2014: Book signing at her perfume apothecary on Twelve Thirty Haro Street, Dec. 11th, 5pm-10pm. Ayala will read select passages from her new book, answer questions, let you sniff some special aromatics, and sign your copy of "Foundation of Natural Perfumery" - her new, self-published book. 

Also introducing: the new perfume, Narkiss (a haunting narcissus soliflore); and debut art exhibit by the perfumer's daughter, Tamya.  

Also planned are wintery libations and brews, old-library-scented chocolate truffles (with pure oud essence - yesss!!!), and after-hours shopping for goodies that can only be found in person. 





Ayala Moriel Parfums at FRAGments

FRAGments is tomorrow - Underground, Artisan and Indie Perfume Event/Collective, at the
cabinet-of-curiosities studio of eclectic sculptor and patron to the arts, Clare Graham.

I'd like to present to you the mini-collection that will be representing Ayala Moriel Parfums at this show. My intern Alicia Arruda and I have spent the week indulging in each and every one of them, and are excited to share with you our experience with them and why we think our friends, fans and customers in Los Angeles are going to love them!

Cabaret is deliciously sultry with creamy vanilla absolute, dark coconut, orris root and tropical magnolia, it is no question why this scent, which evokes images of nights spent dancing on the beach, will be perfectly suited for sunny Los Angeles.

Fetish is a scent that is as sexy as it's name. Fetish is flirtatious but surprisingly complex and while it first teases with a sweet citrusy opening, it gradually fades into a soothing, refreshing scent with notes of apricot scented green tea, jasmine sambac, lemongrass, orris root, Himalaya cedarwood and fir. The scent's cheerful and bubbly spirit make it another perfect choice for Los Angeles's FRAGments where it will be featured! Film Noir was the first one I packed for the show. What better suited scent for the city where so many films of this genre came from?
As dark as Norma Desmond's private screening room Sunset Boulevard; and even darker than the soul of the genre's script writers - Film Noir doesn't even have any top notes. Or heart notes. It's all about musky patchouli, with just enough cruelly spicy dark cacao, and cool bitter myrrh from the catacombs to spark your imaginations.




Zangvil 
was inspired by the texture of cashemere wool on bare skin.
It's a sexy gourmand, centered with ginger and amber at its core, complemented by sparkling notes of wild orange, sensual honey, botanical musk and spicy ginger lily. Try it tomorrow on your own skin!



Last but not least - Treazon, which is my newest perfume. The star of the scent is the narcotic night-blooming tuberose. A surprisingly wearable scent, Treazon is bold as it contrasts the floralcy of tuberose with medicinal-fruity notes of wintergreen and cassis, spicy notes of cinnamon and star anise, and gourmand nuances of dark vanilla, and last but not least - the animalic notes of African Stone and indolic orange blossom. Like all grand-tuberoses, Treazon has a strong lineage to the classic and controversial fragrance “Fracas” and is already gathering a cult following.
 

Treazon was dubbed "breathtakingly beautiful" by both The Non Blonde and Now Smell This (who immediately added it to their "to-buy" lists - the greatest compliments from ladies with such fine taste in perfume!, and is an 2013 Indie FiFi Award Nominee. 


Where:

MorYork Gallery
4959 York Blvd
Highland Park
Los Angeles, CA
90042
 
When:
Saturday June 22, 2013 (that's tomorrow!)
11am-5pm

What:
11am-12pm, Moderated Discussion Session with perfumers
12pm-5pm Pop-up Shop, with emerging and established, leading perfumers-artisans-artists from across North America (including Dawn Spencer Hurwitz, Persephenie* and Yosh).
* Persephenie will present an experimental olfaction project.

P.s. Due to schedule conflict, I won't be able to attend in person; but my perfume friend, Faith Frenz, will be there to help you make your selections. 

FRAGments this Saturday, June 22nd at MorYork Gallery!

I'm honoured and please to announce that Ayala Moriel Parfums will be part of FRAGments - Underground, Artisan and Indie Perfume Event/Collective The 1st Event to be held on June 22, 2013 at MorYork Gallery, 4959 York Blvd, Los Angeles, CA. On June 22, 2013, FRAGments - Underground, Artisan and Indie Perfume Event/ Collective will bring together olfactory and perfume artists from across North America in a gallery setting to present a curated selection of their work. The event will be the first in a series to be held in a unique space and coincide with the first Saturday of the season. Each event will feature a moderated salon discussion followed by a reception and exhibition where perfumer/creators will be able to present their work in a collective pop- up shop designed and styled by FRAGments.

The name for the series is derived from FRAGRANCE MOVEMENT and picks up on the slang word for perfume, "FRAG". While the event represents a collective, implicit is the recognition that independent, artisan perfumers are fragments of a whole that move in different directions. FRAGments seeks to celebrate these differences.

“Artisan perfumery is a growing movement where individuals are exploring unique olfactory directions through a variety of fragrant media and palettes” says Maggie Mahboubian, founder and curator of FRAGments. “However, very few venues exist for these perfumers to present their handcrafted work. FRAGments will fill that gap”. She adds, “it will provide a small scale, intimate forum for artisan perfumers to interact directly with their audience”. Another unique aspect of this event is that it will define a community and spotlight the art of fragrance design through interpretive and experimental work.

The first FRAGments event will be held at MorYork Gallery in Los Angeles, the studio of eclectic sculptor, Clare Graham whose work visually embodies the spirit of this diverse group of perfumers, who create unique, multifaceted and experimental olfactory art. For more information about Clare Graham and this extraordinary venue please visit: www.claregraham.com.

The event will begin with a salon-style discussion session moderated by Saskia Wilson- Brown. Ms. Wilson-Brown is the director of the newly formed Institute for Art and

Olfaction in Los Angeles. The IAO supports the work of olfactory artists through grants, research opportunities, lectures, workshops and a materials library. For more information please visit www.artandolfaction.com.

Event Details:
Summer Solstice Saturday, June 22, 2013
11am-12pm, Moderated Discussion Session with perfumers 12pm-5pm Pop-up Shop

The following artists will present their work at the 1st FRAGments event on June 22:

JK DeLapp, The Rising Phoenix Perfumery
David Falsberg, Phoenicia Perfumes 
Amanda Feeley, Esscentual Alchemy
Lisa Fong, Artemisia Natural Perfume 
Heather Kauffman, Jolie Laide Perfume 
Maggie Mahboubian, Parfums Lalun
Christi Meshell, House of Matriarch
Mik, MIKMOI San Francisco 
Ayala Moriel, Ayala Moriel Parfums
Persephenie Lea, Persephenie
Sherri Sebastian, Sebastian Signs 
Nikki Sherritt, Rebel and Mercury Parfums 
Meredith Smith, Sweet Anthem Perfumes 
Dawn Spencer-Hurwitz, DSH Perfumes 
Laurie Stern, Velvet and Sweet Pea’s Purrfumery
Roxana Villa, Roxana Illunimated Perfume 
Shelley Waddington, En Voyage Perfume
Yosh Han, YOSH Olfactory Sense

Event Highlights and Notables:

*Persephenie will present an experimental olfaction project.
*En Voyage Perfume will be launching their new fragrance at the 1st FRAGments event. *House of Matriarch will spotlight their Blackbird fragrance which was just named a Top 10 fragrance for 2013 by Men's Journal magazine, the only Indie fragrance that made their Top 10 list.
*Esscentual Alchemy will present “Moon Valley” - Featured in Vogue UK May '13 issue in their Natural Beauty Selections.
*Ayala Moriel Parfums will bring Treazon, which was nominated for the Indie FiFi Awards 2013, and 4 more perfumes especially curated for this unique event.

About FRAGments:

FRAGments was founded by West Coast perfumer Maggie Mahboubian who launched her Parfums Lalun brand in September 2012. Maggie has the unique advantage of approaching FRAGments as an “insider” with knowledge about the details and tools needed to create a successful and vibrant event. Her background as a professional architect gives her the skills to coordinate a complex project and see it through to completion. The FRAGments series intends to uncover the potential of this rapidly evolving genre by highlighting artistic exploration and experimentation.

Follow/like FRAGments on Facebook and visit the website for more details. 

Come sniff, get the story behind each perfumer's art and, if you choose, purchase directly from us!
I won't be there in person, but my perfume-friend Faith Frenz will be representing me and will help you discover a collection of 5 perfumes I curated especially for Los Angeles! 


Tickets are $10 and can be purchased online in advance on the FRAGments website.
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