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Drinks industry alumni branch out into perfumes

The latest trend in perfume is all about booze, with drinks industry figures releasing their own fragrances based on their favourite sips.

Wine critic Helen McGinn has written this week about a growing trend for high-end perfumes inspired by the contents of our drinks cabinets. And while many of these fragrances are made by fashion houses, a surprising number of drinks industry figures are using their cellar experience to craft premium perfumes.

Granted, smelling like you’ve doused yourself in single malt might sound less than appealing, but according to McGinn, many of the booze-inspired fragrances aren’t half bad. Whether it’s the smouldering smokiness of whisky or the fresh, zingy botanicals of gin, the booze-inspired sprays can hit the right note. What’s more, they’re commanding retail prices of more than £100.

Lending the trend some heft is the serious drinks industry nous behind the likes of fragrances Kingdom Metamorphic (£110, 50ml) and Angel’s Share by Kilian (£165, 50ml). Produced by esteemed spirits alumni, the scents have been conjured up based on decades spent working in some of the world’s most exciting cellars.

Imogen Russon-Taylor, for instance, created Kingdom, Scotland’s first fragrance house, after working in the whisky industry for 15 years. Likewise, the By Kilian perfume brand was built by Kilian Hennessy, heir to the iconic cognac dynasty. His years spent around ageing brandy led to him developing a fragrance range called Liquors.

After trying the perfumes, McGinn found that Kilian’s cognac-inspired Angel’s Share marries sweet, woody notes with vanilla and a touch of nuttiness. Kingdom Metaphoric’s whisky scent gives notes of spice and leather, a scent that the wine critic says “really does remind me of sipping a dram in front of a fire.”

The real question is whether we will start to see drinks brands, as well as people, diversify into the fragrance market. Could the likes of Eau de Gordon’s, Eau de Baileys or Eau de Smirnoff be on the cards? We’ll wager it won’t be long before a rosé wine perfume hits the shelves. Who, after all, wouldn’t want to smell like Amal Clooney wafting around her Provence estate?




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