Thursday, December 15, 2011

Delicious Perfumed Gourmandises!

Gourmandise, or Gluttony (it sounds more charming in French...everything sounds better in French!) can be defined as over-indulgence for food to the point of extravagancy. It is a term also associated to the pleasure of savoring food, savoring its taste and quality, seeking olfactive and palate enjoyment. According to Saint Thomas Aquina in his Summa Theologica, one of the ways of committing gluttony is to seek for very expensive, luxurious and exotic foods. I am not suggesting we all become sinners. Instead, I am offering this "almost sinful" list of exquisite gourmet fragrances. So, let's leave the sins aside, and think of Gourmandise as a wish to fulfill a desire through food, and how it stimulates and induce us to seek for Gourmet fragrances. Today I want to propose a quest for the most delicious treats. Fragrances listed are so good that you will be impelled to lick your skin!

HALVA (Haleweh or Halwa) 
Photo credit: + Q Perfume Blog

Mastering the art of edibles, I bring Pierre Guillaume and his niche fragrance house Parfumerie Générale, with the latest launches of the Limited Editions Praliné de Santal and Tonkamande.

Praliné de Santal EDP has a delicious mouth watering, rich combination of notes of Sandalwood, heliotrope, Virginian cedar and cashmeran. 
Imagine the delicious sweet aroma of crushed peanut butter cookies, crispy from the outside and smooth and creamy inside. Imagine crunchy caramelized hazelnuts and a sticky, dense Halva. Now put all the ingredients together, and make a layered dessert. Add a woodsy creamy topping, and there you have it - a smooth luxurious perfume-dessert that it is simply irresistible to the senses. Praliné de Santal is as glorious, beautiful and sinful as a BANOFFEE. It does remind me a bit of Jeux de Peau by Serge Lutens, but it is much more refined, 1000 times better crafted, and much less buttery, but still very very creamy. 
The Halva note is simply outstanding, and for those of you who are not introduced to this Middle Eastern sesame delicacy, I suggest you run now to buy a piece. If there was a book such as "1000 food treats you must eat before you die", Halva definitely deserves one entire chapter! The sesame butter is rich, intense, sticky, warm and very tasty, and you will find it in this perfume combined with baked goodies, and roasted nuts.
PDS = Jeux de Peau - butter + Halva + hazelnuts + perfumer skills.


Tonkamande EDP - composing this beauty you have notes of almond milk, aldehydes, tonka beans, wheat, sandalwood, vanilla and amber. It brings many things to my mind, such as drinking hot foamy milk beverages in a cold day, chic ladies powdering their noses and drinking Champagne in a fancy wedding, or even young couples in love embracing each other. It is delicate, slightly gourmet and very chic. Once you spray this fragrance on your skin, two magical things will happen to you: One - you will find out that happiness can be bottled and sold in liquid form; Two - Pierre G. not only masters the art of making surprisingly beautiful gourmet fragrances, but he also mastered to create olfactive cuddling. This is the closest idea of spooning with someone you will get from a fragrance. Feeling lonely? Tonkamande! Wanting to feel extremely happy, naive, or christmas -y? Tonkamande! Having cravings for sweet treats and pastries, without being too boulangerie? Tonkamande. Wanting to feel pretty and bubbling? Tonkamande.

Another chic gourmand perfume is offered by luxurious Italian niche brand Xerjoff. Mefisto EDP is one of the fragrances belonging to the Casamorati 1888 collection, and it also reminds me of Serge Lutens Jeux de Peau, but with much less cholesterol, much more flowers and again, 1000 times better crafted. 


Mefisto EDP - Bergamot, grapefruit and Amalfi lemons are combined to bring a fresh citrusy and refreshing summer-y opening. Lavender, iris and rose bring a strong whiff of spring, and the base with musk, sandalwood, amber and Virginia cedar brings the warmth of an autumn day. That said, the fragrance can be enjoyed a year round, and somehow it contains a slightly gourmand facet, which it takes time to peak, being much more implied than obvious. It is elegant, Mediterranean classic, pleasant and very powerful.
If you make the following formula you have Mefisto:
Mefisto = Jeux de Peau + butter/2 - croissant + (flowers )2 + aromatic herbs + Mediterranean breeze. OR make a lemon & lavender butter cookie fragrance sprinkled with iris powder! 
Although Mefisto seems to be sold as a masculine fragrance, I think both genders will enjoy this fancy fragrance.


If you cannot afford niche treats, Tommy Girl by Hilfiger has a gourmet flanker called Tommy Girl 10. It is not new, probably launched in 2006, celebrating the 10th anniversary of the brand.

Tommy Girl 10 EDP - This version comes with notes of apple trees, camellias mint, cranberries, pear, tangerine, grapefruit, magnolia, rose, honeysuckle, water lilies, butterscotch, sandalwood and birch. It is a crazy fragrance, with a mix of forest during winter and Martha Stewart making cookies. The fragrance has a strong smell of spicy cookies and flowers, with a transparent ocean breeze. Good to combine with a glass of milk.
To make this fragrance the formulas are:
Tommy 10 Girl = Praliné de Santal + (cookies)2 + flowers - (HALVA + hazelnuts) + Ocean Breeze OR Tommy 10 Girl = Mefisto + (cookies)2 - cedar.

I hope you will enjoy the quartet. If you ask me which one is a must have, I would say Tonkande for sure...but I am lucky, I have them all ;-)

Now, I could not leave without bringing the master cookie chef,
The Muppet Show COOKIE MONSTER!!!

If you wish to use my Halva picture, ask me first for authorization! I might not want to share it.


Magnifiscent said...

Dear +Q,
despite I like gourmand touches in a classic perfumery sense (tonka, vanilla, honey, fruits), I never happen to like gourmands in the plain and too obvious sticky way they are used in modern perfumes. They don't even give me euphory or sense of holidays, they just give me toothache :D
You made me curious about what's an Halwa though!

Carrie Meredith said...

I love Halvah! Especially the marble kind. I have had such a craving for it lately but it's not too easy to find around here. I think Pierre is a total genius, I love his version of Gourmand fragrances.

+ Q Perfume Blog said...

Dear Carrie, not easy to find? Really? WOW! Do you want me to check if I can send you via postal service from Israel? send me your address in my private mail and I will check if I can do that. I will be there for a month till FEB 2

+ Q Perfume Blog said...


I used to turn my nose to gourmet fragrances till I found these gourmet treats that are far more complexed and not too obvious. I tend to like to have gourmet fragrances just as a concept. I am more into Chypre, so they would never be a signature fragrance for me. But I stumble into many notes that are different, creative - like the Grappa note in Varvatos for her. Or the apple Narguila note in Kilian's.
I once made a post with a table of gourmet fragrances and their kcals. It was a joke , a funny one:

Magnifiscent said...

You know, I'm totally with you on chypres. Moreover I think the obviousness has a subjective degree and unfortunately most of Pierre gourmands are still too straightforward foody to my nose, that's why I far prefer his non-gourmands.
But again, to show you I'm not that stiff about gourmands, for example I do like myself the fragrances combining rhum and vanilla or for example the sake note in some fragrances. Now let me look for a piece of halvah as I check your previous post :)

Carrie Meredith said...

Dear Simone, thank you for your sweet offer, but I can order it online here in the States. I need Joyva Ring Gels, too, and coconut covered marshmallows... oh, how I miss my Passover and Hanukkah treats!

+ Q Perfume Blog said...

Dearest, I will be there for a month, so if you change your mind let me know!!

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