Friday, March 09, 2012

Day 36 ~ One Year, One Nose

Neroli Bigarade 40%, South African

Scent intensity settles in around 5 (1-10 scale), it opens with a sharp, tart, piquant, intense floral greenness and 'feels' happy and playful. It reminds me of summertime, Grandma German, cool shade and warm lemonade. It's closest scent associate is petitgrain, and I often combine the two to create a cirtus/floral accord. The scent of neroli can be picked apart so that each part of the tree is represented ~ the leaves, twigs, blossoms and fruit are all there, bumping into one another.

Now onto a point which some people often confuse -- neroli and orange blossom absolute are not the same as far as scent profiles go. Neroli is made from the water distillation of bitter orange blossoms, while orange blossom absolute is made from the solvent extraction of the same bitter orange blossoms. They smell nothing alike. The neroli smells of the entire orange tree, while the orange blossom absolute smells of blooming orange blossoms. Something I recently discovered which I wanted to share is that molding oranges, sweet oranges in this case, smell almost identical to orange blossom absolute. There was a big box of oranges on our back stoop which we had picked over the winter and weren't able to give away enough to empty the box, and it went all green and hairy. As I was carrying it out to the dumpster, I couldn't help but smell how beautifully floral-fragrant the moldy oranges were, and was shocked to realize that those smushy green oranges smelled exactly like freshly bloomed orange flowers! Some sort of strange alchemy was afoot, something I'm sure some enterprising chemist may have already taken advantage.

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