Chandler Burr’s Perfume Banquet

The Scent Savant Collaborates with Chef Massimo Riccioli On a Sensory Feast

Trailblazing perfume expert Chandler Burr meets Massimo Riccioli, chef patron at his namesake restaurant within London's Corinthia hotel, to mastermind a menu of gastronomic and olfactory delights inspired by the heady notes in Clinique's classic fragrance, Aromatics Elixir. The New York Times scent critic, acclaimed author and founder of the first museum space dedicated to olfactory art, Burr has become renowned for the interactive ‘Scent Dinners’ he hosts with leading chefs from around the world. Carefully selecting individual ingredients from those used in Aromatics Elixir, Burr and Riccioli's team devised a seven-course menu to complement the fragrant notes that guests would smell between courses. The connoisseurs married the musky smell of ambrette seed with the grainy flavors of a whiskey-infused seafood course, while the combination of maté, myrrh and lavender inspired a dish flavored with smoked tea, Szechuan peppers, tamarind, dates and cognac. The subsequent dinner marked the 40th anniversary of Clinique’s bestseller, a polarizing perfume that Burr says he couldn’t stand until a moment in a New York subway when a woman breezed past him wearing it: “I couldn’t place it, I had to chase after her and ask what she was wearing." Here Burr and Riccioli share their perfectly devised pairings.

Bread course
Absolute of bran, rose absolute and rose molecular distillation
Paired with
Chamomile bread and raw dough

Amouse bouche
Citral and rose oxide
Paired with
Crab salad with lemongrass and fennel sauce, oyster leaves and finger lime

First starter
Vanilla Bourbon absolute and ambrette seed absolute
Paired with
Raw scallop with persimmon and seared scallop with capers, anchovies, and whiskey

Second starter
Oak moss (natural & synthetic mix) and iris concrete
Paired with
Sautéed rabbit with cabernet reduction, carrots, apricot and ginger cream

Pasta course
Ionone alpha, ciste labdanum and aldehyde
Paired with
Small rigatoni with aldehyde sauce, carrots, celeriac, mandarin zest and juice, raw rhubarb, coriander, mint, estragon

Main course
Maté, myrrh and lavender essence
Paired with
Beef seared in smoked tea, with beef in sauce of Szechuan peppers, tamarind, dates and cognac

Dessert
Ylang, tonka and geranium
Paired with
Pastiera tart with passion fruit, mint and peppermint liquor, rambutan, raw rhubarb, mint and gewürztraminer reduction and parsnip and almond sorbet

Petits fours
Eugenol
Paired with
Swiss cookies with clove dust

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