Luca Turin's perfume reviews @perfumes_ilove



I was at FutureFest in London, gave a talk and managed through sheer stupidity and incompetence to miss Brian Eno’s talk later the same day. Then I found out the had shown this slide of his favorite books! Amazing! In ancient days after such a triumph someone would have been there to whisper “you are mortal” in my ear. I had heard through the grapevine that Eno kept a copy of our guide […]

Continue Reading →

Perfumery’s Chevy Volt

Finally had a chance to catch up with mainstream perfumery at the Globus Department store in Zurich. To fortify myself I first went to the newly renovated food floor and staggered around the wine section in amazement at the treasures all around me. I found a very reasonably priced Maury from the year 1929 to celebrate my mother’s 87th next week. But it was the perfumery floor that brought the biggest […]

Continue Reading →

A Sense for Scents


The Academy of Perfumery and Aromatics kindly sent me their A Sense for Scents Edu-Kit, containing 20 Whispis and some instructions. Whispis are neat little devices that provide a metered puff of perfumed air and also lock safely. They are apparently good for a few hundred puffs. The kit does not feature aromachemicals, but accords, like apple, wood, rose and more abstractly glacier, feathers and fur and fresh air. It comes with instructions […]

Continue Reading →

Antonio Gardoni

August brought samples which turned out to be mostly a string of duds, and I was losing heart and readjusting my expectations downwards, both ultimately bad ideas. Then came a parcel from perfumer Antonio Gardoni, and my spirits lifted even while unpacking, because the wrapping paper smelled great, I assume from having absorbed ambient smells in his workshop. I had occasion to review Gardoni’s spectacular Maai two years ago, when I […]

Continue Reading →


If you’re a niche perfumery and you’d like to send me samples, please contact me on and I’ll give you my address and phone number. The deal is: I will only mention your perfumes if I like them, so the worst thing that can happen is nothing.

Continue Reading →

Profumo’s personal perfumes


Dominique Dubrana sent me two bespoke perfumes he did for clients and found especially satisfying. He is a French-born self-taught perfumer working in Italy, and spends a lot of his time in the South Sahara building water pumps for local villagers. I have been fond of his work for years, not least because he embodies the fact that the most important thing for an artist to have is talent. You can learn […]

Continue Reading →

Our Lady of Fluid Dynamics


Went out to lunch today in quiet Chalandri, walked past a remarkable church that clearly ran out of cash halfway through construction, all naked concrete with reinforcing steel poking through. The steel bars are bent flat against the facade every which way and resemble the streamers that indicate airflow on experimental aircraft. It should by rights have statues of Cayley, Prandtl and Zhukovsky inside, each holding a model aircraft, eyes turned […]

Continue Reading →

Cult of Scent


One of the things I find hardest to do in my lab work (apart from keeping my mouth shut) is changing only one thing at a time when trying to perfect an experiment. If you make several changes, you’re not quite sure which made things better and you have to backtrack. The same applies to exceptional meals. If you go to a great restaurant and you order a dish you never […]

Continue Reading →

Walter Netsch


The sublime Cadet Chapel of the US Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, designed by SOM architect Walter Netsch (1920-2008). In this superb photo against a dramatic sky, the building seems to be a fulfilment of Gothic, a metaphor of uplift: sursum corda, fly with the Angels if at all possible, but in the meantime try to keep formation with Blue ones* when racing through the Rockies’ endless thin air. All airplane museums give […]

Continue Reading →

Valentyn Sylvestrov


Not perfumes, but music.Valentyn Vasylyovych Sylvestrov‘s 5th symphony  (1982) and his Postludium for piano and orchestra (1984) are two of the most beautiful pieces of music I have ever heard. Best for headphones, btw, unless you own a pair of Soundlab U-1s.     pic credit: Seattle Times (detail)

Continue Reading →

Posts navigation

1 2 3 12