July 2009: 8 posts

Basenotes Print Magazine : Perfume News

Basenotes

“Award-winning online fragrance resource Basenotes.net is celebrating its 10th birthday by launching a print version of its fragrance consumer website. The magazine will contain the news, reviews and interviews that have helped Basenotes.net become the long-standing website of choice amongst consumers and industry professionals alike and will also feature completely new and original content.” Congratulations to Grant! These are excellent and exciting news. Please read more about it in the Basenotes press release.

Also, I would love to take this opportunity to say congratulations to Robin of Nowsmellthis for winning in the 9th Annual Basenotes Awards Best Blog category! Also, congratulations to Perfume Posse and 1000 Fragrances for the Silver and Bronze awards, respectivelly. I raise my champagne glass to all of you!

Lagman Uzbek Lamb and Noodle Soup Recipe

Lagman

When zeera, or black cumin, hits hot oil, the scent that rises up is complex and rich. It hovers above the sizzling pan as a warm cloud, woody, crisp, with sweet clove and leather undertones. Bunium persicum or black cumin is a plant in the same wonderful family, the Apiaceae or Umbelliferae, that gives us carrot, parsley, cumin, coriander, dill, caraway, fennel, parsnip, celery, and Queen anne’s lace among others. Its black slender crescents are similar to both caraway and cumin, but the flavor bears only a slight resemblance to either.

Lacking the intense animalic note of regular white cumin (Cuminum cyminum) and the musty darkness of caraway (Carum carvi), black cumin has an elegant flavor, possessing a hot sweetness and mineral chill. It has a natural affinity for meat, cruciferous vegetables, onions, garlic, and acidic vegetable-fruit like eggplant and tomato. It is able to refine their flavors, while retaining its own unique character. Black cumin in widely used in Afghani, Pakistani and North Indian cooking, but it is Uzbek cuisine that truly extols black cumin. The Uzbek palette of flavors is bold, yet streamlined, which makes their dishes very memorable. In perfumery, black cumin can be found in fragrances such as Idole de Lubin, Cerruti 1881 Black and Kiss Him by Kiss.

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Marc Jacobs Lola : Fragrance Review

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Marc-Jacobs-Lola

Star rating: 5 stars–outstanding/potential classic, 4 stars–very good, 3 stars–adequate, 2 stars–disappointing, 1 star–poor.

Lola, the newest release by Marc Jacobs following his highly successful Daisy, was another surprising discovery of the season. Created by Calice Becker in collaboration with Yann Vasnier, the fragrance is an interesting study in contrasts. On the one hand, it is a girly pink cocktail of red fruit and warm musk, a contemporary refrain that is found in many successful (and not) new launches. Yet, to classify it in this manner is to underestimate the structure of this fragrance. Lola offers a number of surprising facets, hiding its retro glamour under an inviting and easygoing fruity-floral veil.

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Musabbaha Whole Chickpea Hummus Recipe

Hummus, a creamy paste of chickpeas and tahini scented with lemon and garlic, is rightly one of the most beloved Middle Eastern dishes. Similar chickpea pastes flavored with cinnamon, ginger, parsley and olive oil are mentioned in medieval Arab cookbooks as early as the 13th century. In recent years, hummus and baba ghanoush have become the emblematic dishes for pan-Middle Eastern cuisine. Yet, despite its ubiquity, when properly made, hummus offers one of the most comforting and satisfying dishes with its complex interplay of flavors and rich contrasts between spice, tartness and creaminess. In addition to the commonly encountered creamy hummus, Middle Eastern cuisine offers a number of interesting regional variations, out of which the Syrian-style hummus, musabbaha, is one of my absolute favorites.

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Hermes Kelly Caleche : Perfume Review

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Kellycaleche

Star rating: 5 stars–outstanding/potential classic, 4 stars–very good, 3 stars–adequate, 2 stars–disappointing, 1 star–poor.

I finally had to admit to myself that Hermès Kelly Calèche disappointed me. It did not deliver on the promise to evoke the prized soft leather of Hermès bags, which naturally possess a subtle floral accent; nor was the signature of genius perfumer Jean-Claude Ellena fully obvious in the final result. The fragrance in my mind was glorious, the scent on my skin turned out but a pale shadow of it.

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