A frequent author in Perfumer & Flavorist magazine, Michelle Krell Kydd has recently launched her own blog—Glass Petal Smoke. Inspired by her passion for all things gustatory and olfactive, Kydd’s blog observes the creation, history, myths and folklore that surround food and beauty products. As Kydd explains, “Because Glass Petal Smoke is a blog there is an element of cyber anthropology that I find very exciting. Culture is about human nature and people who love food and fragrance are acutely aware of the connection between the senses and memory.” Glass Petal Smoke appeals to readers who possess such awareness and those who aspire to it.
With a couple of months under her belt, Kydd has already explored everything from Persian green raisins and fireweed honey to osmanthus and Lebanese yogurt sherbet. Here are some highlights from Glass Petal Smoke:
The sound of the word “honeysuckle” conveys sweet comfort, an experience well-known to backyard flower foragers of the fragrant vine. Though many are familiar with the taste of the flower’s nectar, few people know that certain species of Lonicera produce edible berries. Russian scientists have shared their findings with labs in the United States, resulting in the controlled cultivation of “Haskap Berries” in Canada and Oregon. The flavor of the blue honeysuckle berries resembles black currant, rhubarb, blackberry, blueberry and raspberry, but the berry’s stellar antioxidant properties are generating the most interest.
Some wines possess outstanding floralcy, causing one to pause and reflect on beauty which anoints the taste buds. There are stunning bouquets in wine that seem to transform the soul as they are drank. In this blog, the floral virtues of Beaumes de Venise, Lucien Albrecht Gewürztraminer, Quady Elysium, Trimbach Mirabelle Brandy and Belvoir Elderflower Cordial are extolled. Additional recommendations with regard to complementary desserts and wearable fragrances emphasize olfactive and gustatory connections.
In a culture obsessed with celebrity chefs and unknown flavor and fragrance practices, it is not easy for the aspiring gourmand to develop a personal vocabulary for the sense of smell and taste. Here the readers of Glass Petal Smoke are instructed on the ways in which one can independently cultivate these skills—which are not restricted to professionals. The article includes links to flavor wheels for beer, coffee, chocolate, maple syrup and wine. These resources can be utilized by readers to conduct satisfying, independent studies.