Calabrian Bergamot

Calabrian Bergamot. Were you truly the secret ingredient of the tea offered by a wealthy Mandarin of Fujian to the Prime Minister Charles Grey, or more realistically a convenient flavoring to enhance the aroma of a stale black pekoe that the Earl particularly appreciated? Legends abound around the origin of one of the most popular…

Ardent Frankincense

Ardent Frankincense. In your smoke the prayers of the faithful rise. Native of the Arabic Peninsula and the Horn of Africa, you are since the beginning of time linked with the rituals and religions of the cradle of the World. The Jews, the Greeks, and the Romans, calling you Olibanum,  have burnt you on sacred altars…

Sweet & Spicy Cinnamon

Sweet & Spicy Cinnamon. You are the taste of winter. Either in mulled wine or sweet pastries, you give to the little ones and the grown-ups warmth and joy at this season. You are among the oldest spices known and treasured by the ancient civilizations of the Middle-East and Europe. The Egyptians, Mesopotamians, Greeks and Romans, all considered you…

Mimosa

Mimosa. You are the first flower of the year, announcing Spring, embalming the Mediterranean hills and dotting them with your yellow puff-balls. You perfume the flower shops with your sweet and subtle scent. You look like hundreds of miniature Suns that warm up our hearts when they need it most, worn after a long and dark…

Star of Spices

Illicium Verum, you are the star of spices and also the star of our Scent & Flavor homepage. You are originated from China where you are called bājiao (八角), meaning eight horns. There, you are the secret of delicious gravies, usually combined with cassia, cloves, Sichuan peppers and fennel seeds in a five-spices seasoning. You…

Oakmoss

Oakmoss, or evernia prunastri, is a type lichen. Lichens are often called mosses or tree mosses, but they should not be confused with real mosses which are small flowerless green plants, growing in low carpets on wet soil. Lichens are neither fungi nor plants. They are strange organisms, an association between a fungus and an alga, where both parties cooperate for survival…

Immortelle

Immortelle. Neither a harsh winter nor years of storage in a closet will alter your golden charm. You are the everlasting flower; you are “Immortelle.” A true present of the Gods to the people for healing wounds, joint pains, skin and lungs issues, you are also nurturing, calming, harmonizing and grounding, reducing apprehension, irritability, and mental…

Dear Musk

Dear Musk, or musk deer shall I say. You are the victim of your sublime pheromonal secretions, which in minute quantities, are an aphrodisiac for the cruel human beings who kill you for this primary purpose. The origin of the word musk comes from the Greek moskhos meaning testicles. In fact, the musk deer gland…

Guaiac Wood

Guaiac Wood. Tree of life, “Palo Santo” or Lignum Vitae, you are known under many pseudonyms. You are a sacred tree of the Americas, your distant and illustrious cousins are myrrh and frankincense. Since ancient times, shamans and other priests have burnt your hard flesh to purify the sacrificial ground and the house of the…

Smoke on the Water

Smoke and perfume might seem, for some, to be at the opposite end of the olfactory spectrum. Smoke is, however, the most ancient mean of delivering aromas in the air. The origin of the word perfume comes from the old italian word parfumare meaning “to smoke through”. The fragrant smoke of the incense rising up to heaven is…