Writer, editor Doug Wallace embraces elegant old-school ingredients when it comes to…
Let’s have tea. Let’s slow down, sip our tea, pour for those who share our table. Let the day’s stresses slip away. Let us talk.
No wonder perfumers are newly enamoured with the ancient beverage that is tea.
Tea is, after all, the number-two most consumed beverage on the planet, second only to water. And the rituals surrounding it date back hundreds if not thousands of years.
Tea is mysterious, varied, elegant, democratic, and a range of upcoming scents — from Maison Margiela’s Tea Escape Tokyo, 2008 and Vikor & Rolf Flowerbomb La Vie En Rose to Annick Goutal’s L’Ile au Thé and Guerlain’s Teazurra — embrace its deeply nuanced glory.
Our connection to tea is emotional, and steeped in history. There’s also, of course, our brain which links tea with foodie thoughts, with sweet and savoury delights served on the most elegant of porcelain. Enough said.
From a perfumery point of view, tea’s green yet earthly character delivers both freshness and depth to a fragrance: The best of both worlds.
EXPLORING THE TEA TREND: A ROUNDUP OF SIX MINI PERFUME REVIEWS
Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb La Vie En Rose: This summer-edition fragrance mixes Flowerbomb’s fruity feminine rose with green tea notes, as well as jasmine, an orchid accord and a medley of sunny citrus essences, pink pepper, sultry amber and patchouli. Lovely.
Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb La Vie En Rose EDT, $125 (50 ml), Hudson’s Bay
Guerlain Aqua Allegoria Teazurra: This sophisticated cologne-like spritz is an intoxicating brew, combining citrus notes of bergamot and yuzu in the top with a heart of green tea, jasmine and violet, and a sultry base of vanilla and mate absolute. Channel the Riviera with this sophisticated spritz.
Guerlain Aqua Allegoria Teazurra EDT, $70 (50 ml), www.guerlain.com
Maison Martin Margiela Replica Tea Escape Tokyo, 2008: Perfumer Fabrice Pellegrin of Firmenich was inspired here by a Japanese tea service, so mixed green tea with gourmand notes—puffed rice and milk—in combination with a “refined floral burst” via jasmine absolute and osmanthus flower.
“Tea Escape is a perfume of contrasts,” says the perfumer. “It balances the duality between crisp, intoxicating notes of green tea and the enveloping notes of puffed rice.”
Maison Martin Margiela Replica Tea Escape Tokyo, 2008 EDT, $115 (50 ml), www.sephora.com
Hugo Boss Hugo Woman: This fragrance combines Indian Black Tea notes with notes of ripe black plum, iris and base notes of amber, sandalwood and cedar. It’s a rich fruity toilette that’s a great option for those who find many of the fruity-floral fragrances on the market trite and juvenile.
Hugo Boss Hugo Woman EDP, $75 (50 ml), at Hugo Boss Boutiques and Shoppers Drug Mart.
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Annick Goutal L’Ile au Thé: This scent’s earthy tea note swirls with fresh mandarin and velvety plush osmanthus flower and white musk. It’s a sophisticated scent that has an earthy dry masculinity countering the flowers. Original and chic.
Annick Goutal L’Ile au Thé EDT, $143 (100 ml), www.annickgoutal.com; at Hudson’s Bay
Body Shop Fuji Green Tea. This eau de cologne celebrates the restorative and healing qualities of green tea. It plays up its astringency with fresh citrus notes—bergamot, lemon, mandarin—but keeps it warm and feminine with a flower-loving heart of camellia, jasmine and violet. Classic and crisp and amazing perfume value for the price!
The Body Shop Fuji Green Tea, $20 (100 ml), www.thebodyshop.ca
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