When Taste And Smell Collide
Fashion provocateur Thierry Mugler isn’t shy about mixing uncommon ingredients to create his smash-hit fragrances. 1992′s classic Angel blended spicy patchouli notes with edible hints of praline, while last year’s Womanity pitted the juiciness of fig against the salty, metallic flavor of caviar for a play on sweet and savory. The designer-turned-beauty innovator has a similar flair for mixing mediums. Two years ago, with the assistance of his trusted olfactory adviser Pierre Aulas, Mugler drew from ancient winemaking traditions to launch Liqueurs de Parfum, in which he aged his signature scents in specific wooden casks to slightly alter their original formulas. For his latest trick, Mugler has paired Aulus with Michelin-starred French chef Hélène Darroze to create the Taste of Fragrance collection. His three classic women’s perfumes have been spiked with a concentrated flavor accord that has been distilled separately from the original compositions and then mixed back in for added impact; Darroze then devised a specific recipe to complement each new creation accordingly. Angel is boosted by a cocoa powder-infused jam and caramelized almond accord (which got Darroze ruminating on a mole sauce-soaked duck); Alien, Mugler’s woody amber floral, has been embellished with a salted buttery caramel accord (for which Darroze suggests a bean-based dessert); and Womanity has received a boost via an essence of fig chutney that has been subtly spiced with sweet vinegar (Darroze envisions a similarly flavored hors d’oeuvre here topped with a few beads of caviar). Sadly, Darroze herself isn’t available to whip up these dishes in your own kitchen, but the inspiration is certainly enough to get you started on the right track—or at least make you hungry.