Geranium(Pelergonium graveolens)/Himalayas, India(organic)



Olfactory qualities of Geranium(Pelargonium graveolens)/Himalayas, India(organic)

The study of the fragrance of the essences distilled or extracted from different species of the same genus is a delightful one. In the world of natural aromatics there is an increasing number of such essential oils, absolutes, co2 extracts, hydrosols, enfleurage and attars available. In the ten years since we started our modest business and began interacting with distillers and extractors in different parts of the world, we have seen quite a number of unique essences appear that either had never been available before or were restricted to the palette of famous perfume houses. Due to world wide internet availability, better means of transporting goods via international courier, better extraction and distillation techniques and a deep interest in the aromatic treasures of the botanical world, the aspiring natural perfumer can draw upon a great variety of resources to create essences of rare and unusual beauty.

In the case of Geranium one find essential oils and absolutes of Pelargonium graveolens, Pelargonium asperum roseum, Pelargonium asperum roseum var.bourbon,etc.
It is not that there are just different species and varieties available but also distillations from the very same genus and species can present unique aromatic characteristics depending on the region which it is grown, the method of distillation and extraction, the time of harvest, etc. The olfactory explorations of these subtle and sometimes not so subtle differences is what makes the world of natural perfumery a true delight to participate in.

In the past 10 years there has been a genuine aromatic revolution within India. When I first traveled there for the purpose of exploring the countries ancient and modern aromatic traditions in the company of Ramakant Harlalka, who kindly took me to many places in that vast land where distillation and extraction was taking place, there were just a few major oils being distilled like palmarosa, lemongrass, sandalwood, peppermint, basil, cedarwood, jasmin grandiflorum, etc were being produced on a commercial scale. Many oils were being distilled in a minor way for local industry but lack of proper equipment, quality plant material, horticultural expertise etc were holding the industry back. But in the span of a decade that whole scenario changed in a dramatic way. Now there are well over a hundred essences being distilled or extracted both for commercial consumption and export.

At the time of my first explorations with Ramakant, a small quantity of high quality geranium oil was being produced in the Nilgri and Palani Hills of South India and on one of our early explorations I had a chance to visit a government field stations where such work was going on. It was a lovely experience to stand in the cool mountain atmosphere near Kodikanal and see healthy geranium plants growing, being harvested and distilled all in one place. The expertise which they developed in that field station(which eventually was closed) did not die out but was preserved and now has been transferred to the lovely rural mountain areas of Uttaranchal-a state in North India which encompasses pristine mountain valleys where farmers are growing geranium and several other aromatic crops organically. Ramakant,being the natural pioneer that he is, was instrumental in helping setting up these early projects with geranium, designing the distilling equipment appropriate for the local area and teaching the farmers how to distill their geranium crop properly under optimum conditions.

The geranium oil from the Himalayas has a sprightly fresh, sweet, green, herbaceous-minty top-note, very complex and full. Underneath it sits a delicate spicy- bouquet. In the heat-note phase the scintillating sweet minty, complex herbaceous bouquet comes to the forefront. It is this note which clearly distinguishes the rose geranium from South Africa(which is also a great favorite of mine) As Rose Geranium goes into the heart-note phase the roseaceous/herbaceous note predominates. Deep in the dry-out phase of the Himalayan Geranium, a delicate floral note emerges amidst the minty-herbaceous accord, interplaying nicely with them. The radiance and tenacity of both oils is very good. It is a real joy to sit and smell both oils side by side through the different stages of their aromatic lives.

Blends well with ambrette seed co2, eo and abs; anise, star eo and co2; artemisia oils; basil eo, co2 and abs; bergamot eo; birch, sweet eo; caraway eo and co2; cardamon eo, co2 and abs; carrot seed eo, co2 and abs; cassia bark eo and co2; cistus eo and abs; clary sage eo and abs; clove bud eo, co2 and abs; cubeb eo; cumin seed eo and abs; currant, black abs; davana eo and co2; fennel, sweet eo and co2; frankincense eo, co2 and abs; hop eo and co2; hyssop eo and abs; jasmin sambac abs; jasmin auriculatum abs; jasmin grandiflorum abs; labdanum eo and abs; lavender eo, co2 and abs; marigold eo and abs; neroli eo; orange, blood eo; orange, sweet eo; orange essence eo; orange flower abs; orange flower water abs; patchouli eo, co2 and abs; petitgrain oils; rosa damascena eo and abs; rosa centifolia abs; rosa bourbonia abs; rosa rugosa eo; rosa odorata eo; rose leaf abs; rosewood eo; tagetes eo and abs; thyme eo, co2 and abs, tuberose abs and attar; vanilla abs

In perfumery is can be used in colognes, chypres, rose bases, amber bases, herbal bouquets, high class florals, forest blends, culinary perfumes, literary perfumes

Yuzu(Citrus junos) essential oil/Japan




Olfactory Properties of Yuzu(Citus junos)/Japan

The light green oil of the yuzu fruit displays a unique green, dry, bitter, yet sweet, juicy citrus odor which has some punguent/bitter grapefruit-like characteristics coupled with the sweeter aroma of the green mandarin peel oil. The combination of sweet, dry, bitter and juicy is what gives to yuzu its unique and distinct aromatic profile amongst citrus fruits. Even though yuzu is considered a top-note oil it has a finely balanced bitter/sweet dry-out that lasts for almost an hour.

Blends well with allspice eo, co2 and abs; anise, star eo; anise, sweet eo; artemisia annua eo; basil eo's co2 and abs; bay leaf eo; benzoin abs; birch sweet eo; bucchuu leaf eo and abs; cananga eo; cardamon eo, co2 and abs; carnation abs; champaca, golden abs and attar; cistus eo; citrus oils; coriander eo and co2; davana eo; fir oils; frangipani abs; frankincense eo, co2 and abs; galangal eo; geranium eo and abs; ginger eo, co2 and abs; jasmin absolutes; jonquil abs; juniper berry eo, co2 and abs; labdanum eo and abs; laurel leaf eo and abs; lavender eo, co2 and abs; lemongrass eo; litsea cubeba eo; melissa/lemonbalm eo, co2 and abs; magnolia lily co2; marjoram, sweet eo; narcissus abs; night queen abs; orange flower abs; pennyroyal eo; peppermint eo, co2 and abs; osmanthus abs; pine oils, petitgrain oils, neroli eo; ruh kewda; sage, clary eo and abs; spearmine eo; styrax eo and abs; tagetes eo and attar(genada); verbena, lemon eo and abs; violet leaf abs; wintergreen eo; ylang eo, co2 and abs

In perfumery would serve well in geographical/historical perfume, colognes, high class florals, culinary perfumes, winter season perfume, sacred perfumes




Interesting facts about Yuzu(Citrus Juno)

1. Yuzu (Citrus junos) is a highly prized citrus favored by the Japanese. It is about the size of a Mandarin orange, yellow and quite sour with a very fragrant rind, which is the part used in cooking.
2. The Yuzu tree was introduced to Japan from China over 1000 years ago
3. t is unusual among citrus fruits in being relatively frost-hardy, due to its cold-hardy C. ichangensis ancestry, and can be grown in regions with winters as low as -5°C where more sensitive citrus would not thrive. In Japan, an ornamental version of yuzu called hana yuzu (花ゆず, 花柚子?) "flower yuzu" is also grown for its flowers rather than its fruit.
4. The fruit looks like a bulgy tangerine and the leaf is interestingly compound, the larger leaflet being connected to the stem by a smaller one. Yuzu fruits are normally harvested in autumn while still green, although the fruits eventually turn into an orange yellow colour. Their aroma is clearly different from those of other citrus fruits - a characteristic tart, dry aroma reminiscent of green grapefruit with definite overtones of mandarin orange.
5.A traditional hot bath is enjoyed in Japan in which many whole fruits, most often wrapped in cheesecloth, float in the water. This "yuzu-yu", or yuzu bath is taken on the evening of the winter solstice. One of the most popular fruits in Japan, this citrus scent is said to inspire optimism and promote a sense of well-being.
6.This sour fruit is used almost exclusively for its aromatic rind and snappy zest. Use as a decorative garnish for clear soups. Add small slivers to a variety of dishes to enhance flavor. Simmered dishes love the presence of its shredded peel. Its astringent juice makes a very tasty contribution when used in sauces, beverages, confections and vinegar. Offering many subtle tropical flavors, this fruit creates a complex taste when sweetened to make a fruit flavored drink. Dried yuzu is sometimes combined with other spices. Its striking tree makes a lovely garden ornamental.
7. The body of the taepyeongso, a Korean traditional oboe, is often made from yuzu wood.

Night Queen(Cestrum nocturnum) Absolute/ South India




Images of Night Queen/Cestrum nocturnum

Olfactory Properties of Night Queen/Rat ki Rani(Cestrum nocturnum) Absolute/South India

The very viscous light green liquid(can solidfy at cooler temperatures) of Night Queen Absolute extracted from the flowers of the Cestrum nocturnum shrub has an intensely rich sweet, fruity, honeyed spicy aroma with good tenacity and radiance. As the absolute passes through the different stages of its aromatic life the honeyed fruity note becomes less predominant with the sweet floral, spicy aroma coming to the forefront. This note remains present for more than 24 hours on a perfumer blotter.

Blends well with agleia odorata abs; ambrette seed eo, co2 and abs; arucaria eo; basil eo, co2 and abs; bay leaf eo; benzoin abs; boronia abs; broom abs; cabreuva eo cananga eo; cassie abs; cardamon eo, co2 and abs; carnation abs cascarilla eo; champa, gold abs and attar; chamomile, english/roman eo and abs; chamomile, blue/gernam; eo, co2 and abs: champa white co2, abs and eo; cinnamon bark eo, co2 and abs; clary sage eo and abs; clove budy eo, co2 and abs; copaiba balsam eo; coriander eo, co2 and abs; fir balsam abs; frangipani abs; galangal root eo; ginger eo, co2 and abs; gurjun balsam eo; hay abs; helichrysum eo and abs; henna leaf co2 and abs; jasmin absolutes(sambac, grandiflorum and auriculatum); jonquil abs; kadam attar; kewda ruh and attar; laurel leaf eo and abs; mace eo and co2; magnolia lily co2; mandarin petitgrain eo; mate abs; mimosa abs; narcissus abs; nutmeg eo and co2; orris root eo, co2 and abs; orange blossom abs; osmanthus abs; rose abs and eo's(damascena, centifolia bourbonia) sandalwood eo, co2 and abs; siamwood eo; tarragon eo and abs; tea black abs; tea green abs; tonka bean abs; tuberose abs; violet leaf abs; ylang eo, co2 and abs; lily, gardenia, rose, wall flower re-creations


In perfumery can be used in exotic oriental bouquets; tropical perfumes; high class florals; floral spicy notes; garland perfumes; sacred essences; warm-spicy florals, lily, gardenia, rose, wall flower re-creations

When I first went to live on a small farm in South India in 1971, I became acquainted with the delicious, heavy, sweet exotic scent of the Night Queen flowers as they perfumed the air as evening fell in the subtropical setting in which I lived. There is something enchanting about such incredible scents that one encounters when night begins to fall and one cannot see the source from which they originate. All of a sudden one steps into a magical fragrant world that surrounds and engulfs one in a mysterious way.

In subsequent years I encountered this woody shrub and the delicate greenish white flowers radiating its intoxicating perfume in different parts of India and when in 1998 White Lotus Aromatics was founded, it was a keen desire of mine to find some authentic source for the attar or if possible the absolute extracted from the flowers. I had been told that in Kannauj the ancient perfume center of India the attar of Night Queen was still occasionally produced, but even though I became intimately involved with the attar industry at that time I could not find anyone to produce the attar.

During a visit to Coimbatore at the base of the Nilgri Hills in South India I did come in contact with a family that were pioneers in the extraction of tuberose, jasmin sambac and jasmin grandiflorum and they had at one point established a 4 acre Night Queen flower garden that was also equiped with lights so the flowers could be harvested at night by the local villagers but they eventually had to abandon the project because the scent of the flowers was said to attract the cobras and in any case the villagers did not like work in the evening when the sun went down and when the flowers began to open(which is the point at which they need to be picked). All the extractor could do was give me a small amount of the concrete which w

Even then I maintained my interest in this flower and its fragrance although there seemed little hope that I might ever have a genuine attar or absolute of its scent.
Then early this year I established a new contact with an extractor in deep South India who had undertaken to produce the absolute an experimental basis. They were able to produce 4 kilos of concrete from the flowers out of which they were able to produce 1 kilo of absolute. They too have decided that the production of the Night Queen concrete/absolute is to labor intensive and is not cost effective but they were willing to sell the 1 kilo of absolute to me which I now have.

So now I have a limited amount of this lovely absolute to share with our customers but it is important to realize that at least from the sources currently available to me it is this small amount which I have to offer. Already 10 ounces of it is spoken for meaning that I have another 25 which are available.
Out of that I am going to take 3 ounces and divide it into 60 1/20th ounce sample sizes so the maximum number of our customers can explore this special gift of nature. The remaining 22 ounces will be sold on first come, first served basis with a maximum number of 4 ounces to any one person.
Prices for the Night Queen(Cestrum nocturnum absolute)
sample size(1/20th of an ounce)-$22.50
1/4 ounce=$100.50
1/2 ounce=$175.50
1 ounces=$300

Contemporary Night Queen/Ratrani Attar(Blend of 10% Night Queen Absolute with pure sandalwood oil)-* I have made a small amount of the Night Queen Contemporary Attar for those who wish to enjoy this essence but may not be able to afford the absolute.
Sample-$11.25
1/4 ounce-$50.25
1/2 ounce-$87.75
1 ounce-$150
4 ounces-$558

Patchouli(Pogostemon cabline) absolute/ 3-year aged essential oil(50/50 blend)/India




Patchouli(Pogostemon cabline) absolute/ 3-year aged essential oil(50/50 blend)/India

Patchouli absolute and aged patchouli essential oil both capture a certain spectrum of the patchouli essence and the combination of the two gives one a fuller expression of the aroma of this gift of nature
In the viscous dark green absolute one finds the rich deep, heavy, earthy, mossy, herbaceous dimensions of the patchouli essence and in the aged essential oil presents the beautiful complex sweet, rich, herbaceous-balsamic, somewhat spicy-musky bouquet. Both the absolute and the essential oil have very good tenacity and are excellent fixatives but together they form an accord which covers a greater aromatic spectrum of the essence contained in the plant and the blend has a greater radiant power as well.


Blends well with agarwood eo and co2; amberi attar; ambrette seed eo, co2 and abs; amryis wood eo; angelica root eo, co2 and abs; aruacaria eo; benzoin abs; birch, sweet eo; cardamon eo, co2 and abs; cassia eo and co2; cedarwood eo's and abs; cinnamon eo, co2 and abs; cistus eo and abs; citrus oils; clary sage eo and abs; clove eo, co2 and abs; copaiba balsam eo; costus root eo, co2 and abs; cypress eo and abs; elemi eo and abs; fir eo's and abs; frankincense eo, co2 and abs; galangal root eo; galbanum eo, co2 and abs; geranium eo and abs; ginger root eo, co2 and abs; guaicwood eo; hay absolute; helichrysum eo and abs; juniperberry eo, co2 and abs; labdanum abs and eo; lavindin eo and abs; lavender eo, co2 and abs; muhuhu eo; musk, black attar; myrrh eo, co2 and abs; nagarmotha eo and co2; nutmeg eo, co2 and abs; oakmoss abs; opoponax eo and abs; orris root eo, co2 and abs; pepper black eo, co2 and abs; peru balsam eo and abs; pine eo's and abs; rose eo's and abs; rosemary eo, co2 and abs; sandalwood eo, co2 and abs; shamama attar; spikenard eo; tonka bean abs; valarian eo and co2; vanilla co2 and abs; vetiver eo, co2 and abs; violet leaf abs; wintergreen eo, ylang eo, co2 and abs

In perfumery is used in incense bouquets, oriental perfumes, fougeres, chypres, precious woods bases, forest accords, amber bases, sacred perfumes, etc

Galanga Root(Kaempferia galanga)/Indonesia organic



Images of Kaempferia galanga



Olfactory Properties of Galangal Root(Kaempferia galanga)/Indonesia organic
The essential oil of Galangal Root distilled from the roots of the Indonesian grown plant should not be confused with the oil essential oil of Galangal Root oil from India which is distilled from the roots of Alpinia officinarium. It is very easy for such confusions to arise if one does not look to the botanical name of the plant for proper identifaction of the aromatic plant being distilled particularly in this case as both oils bear the name Galanga or Galangal oil. Sometimes the oil of Alpinia officinarium roots are called Lesse Galanga or Lesser Glangal.
The Indoensia Kaempferia galanga oil has some very fine olfactory properties which have been little explored in natural perfumery. First of all the physical properties of the oil are unique in that under cool conditions in tends to either crystalize totally or to separate into a clear transparent top layer of oil with the crystalized mass composing the major portion of the essence. It easily melts with gentle heat and can then smoothly be incorporated into perfume compositions with no trouble and it will not then recrystalize.
The essential oil displays a rich, warm, sweet, tangy, balsamic-spicy, slightly camphoraecous aroma with a precious woods undertone with great tenacity and radiance

Blends well with amberi attar; benzoin abs; cananga eo; cedarwood eos; cistus abs and eo; citrus eo's; conifer oils and abs; costus eo, co2 and abs; ambrette seed eo, co2 and abs; cascarilla eo; coriander eo, co2 and abs; elecampgne eo and abs; galbanum eo, co2 and abs; ginger eo, co2 and abs; labdanum eo and abs; laurel leaf eo and abs; lovage herb and root eo and co2; mace eo and co2; mastic eo and abs; myrtle eo; musk, black attar; nigella damascena abs; nutmeg eo, co2 and abs; patchouli eo, co2 and abs;rose absolutes; sandalwood eo, co2 and abs; shammma attar; vetiver eo, co2 and abs

In perfumery it is used in oriental bases, fantasy fragrances ; spice accords, some high class florals, amber bases, chypres, fougeres, incense bouquets


Interesting facts about Kaempferia galanga/Galangal

1. The plant is used as a herb in cooking in Indonesia, and especially in Bali; its Indonesian name is kencur. Its leaves are used in the Malay rice dish, nasi ulam
2.It is one of four plants known as galangal, and is differentiated from the others by the absence of stem and dark brown rounded rhizomes, while the other varieties all have stems and pale rosebrown rhizomes.
3. In Thailand, rhizome is an ingredient for soups and curries.
In Indonesia, used as a spice.
Rhizome is used for cosmetics, making of perfumes and protecting clothes from insects.
4. Rhizomes used as wash for dandruff or head scabs.
Leaves used as perfume in washing hair.


Links for Kaempferia glanga

Uses in Ayurvedic medicine
Uses in Western herbal medicine
Uses in cooking

Rosemary verbenone/Rosmarinus officinalis c.t. verbenone




Olfactory properties of Rosemary verbenone/Rosmarinus officinalis ct verbenone/South Africa(organic)


The essential oil of Rosemary verbenone from South Africa displays a fine, fresh complex citrus-coniferous-herbaceous topnote. As the initial top-notes began to recede a balanced sweet, coniferous-herbaceous bouquet comes into the ascendency into which is woven a delicate, penetrating camphoraceous note. Deeper into the dryout a rich radiant green resinous-herbaceous note appears which has very good tenacity

Blends well with artemisia oils; benzoin abs; bucchu leaf oil and abs; camphor oil; cardamon seed eo, co2 and abs; cedarleaf oils; cedarwood oils; chamomile, wild morocco eo and abs; cinnamon bark eo, co2 and abs; cistus eo and abs; citronella eo; citrus oils; clary sage eo and abs; cypress eo and abs; cubeb eo; currant, black abs; cumin seed eo, co2 and abs; elemi eo and abs; eucalyptus eo and abs; fir eo's; frankincense eo, co2 and abs; galangal root eo and co2; galbanum eo, co2 and abs; hyssop eo and co2; helichrysum eo and abs; juniperberry eo, co2 and abs; labdanum eo and abs; lavindin eo and abs; lavender eo, co2 and abs; lavender, spike eo; mace eo and co2; marjoram eo and co2; muhuhu eo; myrrh eo, co2 and abs; myrtle eo; nutmeg eo, co2 and abs; oregano eo and co2; parsley seed eo and co2; peppermint eo, co2 and abs; petitgrain eo's; pine oils and abs; sage eo and co2; tea, black abs and co2, spruce oils and abs; thyme eo, co2 and abs;

In perfumery is used in literary perfumes, colognes, forest accords, hungary water; incense perfumes, oriental perfumes, fougeres, chypres, amber notes, herbal bouquets

Fenugreek CO2(Trigonella foenum-graceum) select extract



Olfactory Properties of Fenugreek CO2(Trigonella foenum-graceum) extract/ China
The dark yellow fluid co2 extract radiates a warm, sweet, diffusive, spicy powdery bouquet which an underlying "maple syrup/licorice" like note, with courmarinic,balsamic nuances. The sweet, spicy, powdery note lasts for hours into the dry-out phase

In perfumery is used in culinary perfumes, incense compositions, oriental bouquets, chypres, fougeres, new mown hay accords

Interesting facts about Fenugreek
1. In India, fenugreek seeds are mixed with yogurt and used as a conditioner for hair.
2. In Egypt, fenugreek seeds are prepared as tea, by being boiled then sweetened.
3. In the United States, where maple syrup is popular but expensive, fenugreek is widely used in lower-cost syrup products as a maple syrup flavoring such as Mapleine.
4. The Latin species name foenum graecum means "Greek hay", referring to both the intensive hay fragrance of dried fenugreek herb and its Eastern Mediterranean origin.
5. Iran has a particularly rich tradition in cooking with fenugreek leaves; among the most famous examples is ghorme sabzi [قرمه سبزی], a thick sauce made from fresh or dried vegetables (leek, onion, occasionally beans) and herbs (fenugreek, parsley, mint; some recipes also call for chives and coriander leaves). The sauce acquires a characteristic acidic flavour by addition of dried limes
6. The major use of fenugreek is in curry powders, figuring in many mixtures, especially vindaloo and the hot curries of Sri Lanka. It is an ingredient of Panch phoron, the Indian five-spice mixture. In home-made powders, the amount used can be controlled, but in cheap bought powders it often overpowers.


Links to articles on Fenugreek

Wikipedia article on Fenugreek
Mongraph on Fenugreek
Fenugreek as a spice
Fenugreek in cooking and medicine
Fenugreek in History
Chemistry of Fenugreek

Rosa bourboniana \Edward Rose Absolute



Olfactory Properties of Edward Rose/Rosa bourboniana absolute/South India
Edward Rose or Rosa bourboniana is grown extensively in India particularly at the base of of the Palani Hills, west of Madurai in the State of Tamil Nadu and in Rajasthan near Ajmer. In South India it is grown primarily from the fresh garland market and in Rajasthan for making rose water and gulkand(a type of rose-petal jam) In Rajasthan a small amount of the crop goes for making traditonal attar and essential oil and in Tamil Nadu for extracting the concrete/absolute.

The absolute of Rosa bourboniana reveals a unique sweet-heavy, honeyed, green mossy, ambery, roseaceous bouquet. The sweet, roseaceous, honeyed note comes to the forefront as the dry-out phase commences becoming more delicate and sublime with the passage of the hours. Tenacity and strength of the absolute is very good.

Blends well with a great variety of materials-benzoin abs; agarwood eo and attar; aglaia odorata abs; ambrette eo, co2 and abs; amyris eo; araucaria eo; boronia abs; broom abs; cabreuva eo; carnation abs; cassie abs; cedarwood oils; champaca attar and abs; cistus eo and abs; coriander eo and co2; fir balsam abs; frangipani abs; frankincense eo, co2 and abs; guiacwood eo; gurjun balsam eo; helichrysum eo and abs; hay abs; howood eo; jasmin absolutes; kewda ruh and attar; labdanum eo and abs; lemonbalm eo, abs and co2; magnolia lily co2; mandarin petigrain oil; mimosa abs; muhuhu eo; night queen abs; orris eo, co2 and abs; orangeflower abs; osmanthus abs; palmarosa eo; patchouli eo, co2 and abs; rose abs and eo's; rose leaf abs; rosewood eo; saffron attar and co2; sandalwood eo, co2 and abs; siamwood eo; tagetes eo and abs; tonka bean abs; tuberose abs; verbena eo and abs; vetiver eo, co2 and abs; ylang eo, co2 and abs;

In perfumery Rosa bourboniana this lovely absolute can be used in rose bases, garland perfumes, sacred essences, high class perfumes, new mown hay compositions, incense creations, chypres, fougueres, oriental perfumes