Friday, 27 May 2011

Wine and Perfume

Hello everyone! I am posting Sue's blog today as Blogger is having a hiccup and Sue can't sign in!

Wine and Perfume have more in common than you might think . . . both uphold the notion of “terroir”; both need careful harvesting at maturity to gain the optimum quality and final aroma, both use a process of transformation – from grape to wine and from flower petal to essence, both undergo olfactory research, both rely on the oenologist and his nose and both are stringently monitored for health – allergens in perfumes and food safety in wine.

There are several perfumiers and wine makers who have made perfumes that have been inspired by wine - Ginestet Wine Merchants in Bordeaux have 3 perfumes made with the expertise of Gilles Toledano, Perfumier of Florescence Perfume in Grâves. The 3 perfumes are inspired by 3 major wines from Bordeaux: a dry white wine, a Sauternes and a red. Samples of these wines were sent to the Bordeaux Oenology facility in order to discover the primary molecules. The results were then sent to the Florescence Perfumery to create the essence. The perfumes are:

Botrytis - “Recalls a great Sauternes in its sparkling, autumnal silk rose. Honey, candied fruits, quince and gingerbread jostle and whisper sweet nothings”

Le Boisé - “Pays homage to the oak and that combination of matter, skill and know-how. The light vanilla touch of the oak delicately melds with the finest of spices.”

Sauvignonne - “Grapefruit, white peach and box tree aromas.”

The perfumes are faithful to Bordeaux wine in that Sauvignonne has light green tints typical of a dry white wine. Botrytis is slightly amber in colour similar to that of a Sauternes and Le Boisé is sold in a tinted bottle.

Across the globe a South African winery has created The Idiom Collection, in partnership with boutique perfumer Tammy Frazer of Frazer Parfum. The bottles are hand-blown by renowned South Africa glass blower, David Reade. Tammy Frazer, is the grandchild of the founder of Oil of Olay. The Bottega family, who own the Idiom Collection, chose to be the first winery to work with the South African born perfumer. The inspiration used for the perfume was particularly the IDIOM Cape Blend, which is a fragrant blend made with South Africa’s own unique varietal, Pinotage.

Alberto Bottega has said that: “The IDIOM Cape Blend is not what one might expect from a Cape Blend, it isn’t like the rough South African veld, rather it is like the gentle slopes of our Stellenbosch vineyards. It is a smooth rich wine made from the Cape’s own grape Pinotage (40%) blended with Cabernet Sauvignon (50%) and Merlot (10%). It is opulent and long lingering, with abundant aromas of deep red cherry fruit, sweet caramel and fragrant cigar smoke.”

There are also perfumes that are influenced by Champagnes (however they are no longer permitted to use the name Champagne as it is protected by the AOC).

Champagne Brut by Demeter

Royal Bain de Caron by Caron (launched in 1941 as Royal Bain de Champagne)

Yvresse by YSL (formerly known as Champagne)

If you can think of any more perfumes inspired by wines please let me know!


lostpastremembered said...

Sue, I sent a link to this to my favorite perfumer... I thought it was a great post. I have often thought they were related... since wine critics often talk in similar terms with notes and such.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the notes on the Idiom Perfume. We were proud to get the Idiom Parfum du Vin into Harrods and have now released a solid perfume. If you are ever in the neighbourhood, then let me know and we can arrange a tasting.

Sue said...

Thanks Deana :-)

And thank you for the message about Idiom Parfum du Vin too! I would love to do a tasting one day :-)