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SmellyBlog

EauMG Reviews Zangvil

Some of you might feel it more than others - but autumn is just around the corner! Victoria Jent claims Zangvil is the perfect scent for this time of year, and I won't argue with her "eaupinion"! 

"Zangvil is a gourmand. In fact, it’s so gourmand that there’s is a matching tea from the brand. However, I think of it as the sort of gourmand that even a gourmand hater would like. The fresh citrus, ginger and florals balance the sweetness. It really is perfect for this time of year. It’s like “layering”. It can transition to warmer days to those cooler nights that need a sweater."

Visit EauMG to read the full story.

Sick & Chic

Sick & Chic by Ayala Moriel
Sick & Chic, a photo by Ayala Moriel on Flickr.
I've been struggling with a cold since Sunday, and been trying to keep my cool about it and not feel too sorry for myself (probably the worst part of being ill). That's how I came up with the idea of Sick & Chic - maintaining your dignity through illness.

Of course this is not an easy task when you’re as sick as a dog and can’t even get out of bed. And I don't know that it would be effective or relevant for someone suffering from a serious condition. Nevertheless, just like in healthy living - it’s those little details that make the not-quite-pleasant experience just a little more bearable and ever so slightly less depressing.

Instead of drowning in used tissue, surrounded by empty mugs and 80’s workout attire (I'll be the first to admit that the ugliest clothing tend to be the most comfortable) -- bring out your finest china to drink that medicinal brew, your coziest sweater (or sweater dress), up-cycled cashmere underwear and mukluks and try to be a little bit more glamorously ill... I guarantee it will lift your spirits up. At least a little. And after the spirit, the body will follow - slowly but surely.

While we’re speaking of brews to ward off those flu bugs and chase away the chills: not all medicine tastes awful. Here are a few examples that are easy to brew even if you don’t have a personal nurse or a cook at your disposal. The key is to keep the body warm and hydrated, so it can flush out the toxins and whatever else it's fighting with... So as long as it's not coffee and alcohol - you'll probably benefit from a hot tea or tisane. But some are, of course, more effective:

Fir needle tip tea, which was the aboriginal’s only source of vitamin C throughout the winter months. It has a delicate citrus taste, reminiscent of mandarin oranges. Harvest the new growth needles in the springtime and dry for later use; or purchase from Juniper Ridge.

Another wonderful source of vitamin C is hibiscus flower tea (aka Jamaica), Besides, its ruby-red jewel tones are another reason to bring a smile to one's face. Brew it alone or throw in a few slices of fresh ginger or even a few blueberries (frozen will do) to enhance the flavour and amp up the medicinal properties (ginger is a great warming and anti-microbial brew that's wonderful for chest colds).

If hot water and lemon is your thing, why not spice it up a bit with Bittered Sling Lem-Marrakech? Reminiscent of Moroccan pickled lemon and cardamom, it's sure to add some intrigue to your run of the mill lemon and hot water remedy. Besides, it's got the beneficial "side effects" of relieving fever. 

Ginger, lemon and honey is my long-time go-to whenever I have a cold. It seems to take care of it all - vitamin C, soothing the throat, aiding digestion and warming up the body. Honey also helps the immune system fight foreign invaders, and the whole thing just tastes great, in my humble opinion. Simply slice about a thumb-length of fresh ginger root, top with hot water, add a teaspoon of local unpasteurized honey - and squeeze as much lemon as you can take (up to 1/2 a lemon, preferably organic). You can also slice 1/2 a lemon instead of squeezing it - and eat the entire thing once you finished the brew. It's actually the white pith that contains the most vitamin C in the citrus... 

Sick & Chic

Feeling extra glamorous - and your nose is not 100% plugged and useless? A little perfume won't hurt to lift up your spirits. This is the time for those otherwise in-your-face spicy orientals: they won't feel nearly as overpowering as before (though you still should be careful of overdosing, in case you are surrounded by humans whose noses are not as plugged as yours). Opium, Tabu, Youth Dew - the time is now! And what with their slightly medicinal air of all those oriental spices and patchouli, medicine chests and the Chinese clinic are not an unpleasant association.

Not surprisingly, I'm partial to my Zangvil, which I created exactly when I was feeling cold and sick. It never fails from bringing that feeling of coziness and well-being and just warms me up, with magnolia lily, ginger lily and ginger.

Speaking of ginger lily - it is a rather unusual note that shares some characteristics with ginger root: effervescence, complexity, warmth and sensuality. It started showing up in perfumes such as Dark Amber & Ginger Lily, where it disappears in a blink of an eye and gives way to sheer amber and woodsy musks. In Providence Perfume Co's Ginger Lily, this note is paired with rather bold spices - clove and cinnamon - to create a modern spicy oriental that is all-natural and seductive. But also perfect for those under-the-weather days, when you're not sure if you want a medicine or a perfume.

If your cold has reached the point of needing to steam with eucalyptus or camphor - try a dab of 1000 by Patou, or better yet - Shiso by Aftelier will make you feel glamorous about it. After all, borneol camphor is what the geishas used to scent their kimonos with; and their milky white skins were adorned with a powdered form of incense containing camphor, cassia, sandalwood, agarwood and other sweet spices and herbs. 

Chinatown is one of those powerhouse modern fruity chypres, where more is less (so you might not be as overwhelmed by it when you have a cold!). It also has an unusual concoction of spicy medicinal notes reminiscent of the TCM's clinic, where powdered Don Quai permeates the air, numbing pain an bringing up memories - alongside many other sickeningly bitter herbs.

Mitsouko is another go-to-favourite when things don't go quite so well. It has proven to withstand the test of time (read: bad memories) and even though I was wearing it during a very traumatic time when my daughter was hospitalized - I still enjoy it very much. It's one of those friends that will never leave you, even when all hell breaks lose. It's that good. Besides, it is so perfectly balanced - dry yet sweet, fruity yet spicy, warm yet clean and elegant - that it never fails.

And if nothing at all seems to satisfy you - you can make an aromatherapeutic diffuser blend to keep all those winter bugs at bay, clearing your space while infusing it with a lovely, refreshing smell. You may also use 10-20 drops of this blend in a bath:
20 drops Eucalyptus oil
20 drops Lemon oil
10 drops Ginger oil
10 drops Thyme, Linalool
3 drops Allspice oil

What do you wear when you're feeling ill? Do you just go au-naturelle - or do some scents seem to help you get out of it?

Zangvil is in LA Times' Best of 2011 List!!!



Zangvil is in LA Times' Best of 2011 List!!!

"Ayala Moriel Parfums Zangvil: As a fan of Moriel naturals, I can’t get enough of this subtle holiday skinscent that blends ginger-spiked amber and candied orange."
Picked by LA Time's Fragrance Columnist, renown author and perfumista Denise Hamilton (did you know that the heroine of her new book, Damage Control, is a perfumista as well? How cool is that!).

And - the article also recommends our custom perfume services - definitely the ultimate luxury!

Sights and Textures from the Zangvil Tea Party

photo5

For those of you who missed the Zangvil tea party - here are some photos that will I hope you will find inspiring for creating your own wintery tea party this holiday season!

ZangvilTeaParty4
The assembly of desserts (except for the whipping cream that joined the midst of the pears only later on).
You can also see snowballs (or Mexican wedding cakes), orange-ginger icebox cookies, halva, and barks of the new White Potion chocolate bar!

ZangvilTeaParty1
Setting up the desserts in eikcam's handcrafted and painted birch pottery. Get into the winter mood with rustic style bypassing cliches.

White Brownies & Ginger Marshmallows
White chocolate brownies with sour cream frosting. I the background - CocoaNymph's ginger marshmallows that topped the steaming chai we cooked!
And the lovely tea tumblers by eikcam - each has a different emblem - so it's quite easy to remember which cup is yours!

Zangvil Tea Party Sandwiches
Tea sandwiches:

Asian Pear + Cheddar + Quince Mustard tea sandwiches

Orange +Fennel + Tarragon Tea Sandwiches

Kabu + Yuzu Tea Sandwiches

The Carrot + Ginger proved to be unnecessary for this very full menu... We had enough ginger already anyway ;-)

I've also served freshly baked cheese & chive scones, but they were gone before I had a chance to snap a photo!

Zangvil tea + White Potion chocolate bar

So excited about the new (4th) fragrant chocolate bar that we launched this weekend!

The White Potion white chocolate bar was created together with Rachel Sawatzky of CocoaNymph, and has white chocolate, vanilla beans, roasted almonds, toasted coconut, and... tuberose essence! It's amazing and not to sweet at all :-)

As for the Zangvil tea - it's the first time I'm launching that is all my doing. I've designed the tea, a perfumed tea which is so fragrant and can be infused up to 7 times!

Ingredients:
Silver needle jasmine white tea
Ambrette seeds
Sliced vanilla beans
Cryztallized ginger

I'm very happy with how the new labels turned out as well. All the tea labels are going to be re-done, and the teas will be relaunched in the springtime.

Zangvil Tea Components

Zangvil tea demo - 3 types of white tea and the other ingredients that make my new Zangvil tea!



Red Bartletts
A word about the poached pears: I felt like a genius finding this underaged pears at the Winter Market. If it wasn't for their lack of desire to reach full pear size, I would have had to serve them cut into cubes (shame on their seductive shape!) or as spoon dessert (which defeats the whole purpose of a tea party). Little Asian pears also work well for the same purpose.

Ginger Marshmallows
Handmade ginger marshmallows (by CocoaNymph, naturally!), that we served with the homemade chai. Already a winter favourite!

Birch Vases
And last but not least - the birch vases, so wintery and festive in a twisted way... I think I might just need to keep them here at the studio - they are a perfect match to the pussy willows I keep year-around.

Zangvil Is Here!

Zangvil Perfume Launch

Dear Fragrant Friends,

Winter is fast approaching, and to keep us all cozy, calm and content during this holiday season, I've concocted Zangvil perfume and white tea. This Sunday, 20.11.2011, we'll celebrate Zangvil's debut at the studio with a winter-white tea party, which is also the perfect occasion to lauch White Potion chocolate bar - our 4th fragrant chocolate with CocoaNymph - fashioned after the White Potion perfume (and truffles!). We are almost full - but still have a couple of teacups waiting for you!

In this newsletter:

  1. Introducing: Zangvil!
  2. Zangvil White Tea
  3. Zangvil Triple Launch Tea Party 20.11.2011
  4. White Potion Chocolate: 4th Fragrant Bar with CocoaNymph
  5. In The Media: LA Times Magazine
  6. Recipe: Blue Plum & Almond Torte (Gluten Free)
  7. Winter Events
  8. Postal Deadlines for Christmas
Read the rest of the newsletter here.
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