What Are Gourmand Fragrances?
If you want to smell good enough to eat, let me introduce you to the gourmand fragrance family. Most often, these fragrances capture the essence of desserts: the richness of a chocolate cake; the creaminess of caramel; or the sweetness of a giant candied apple. There has also been a rise in gourmands that capture the fragrance of food and drinks with iconic scents that not quite as sweet, including chilies, coffee, and whiskey.
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What Does Gourmand Mean?
In French, “gourmand” means “greedy” – a title perfectly suited to a fragrance designed to leave anyone in its path wanting more. But, there’s a delicate balance that a gourmand cologne has to achieve: create an “edible” scent that doesn’t smell too synthetic or sweet. Many guys steer clear of this fragrance family, proving that successfully creating a gourmand that appeals to men is no easy task.
But, while it might not be easy, it’s not impossible. There are a few colognes that are able to take the typical gourmand notes, like vanilla and tonka bean, and combine them with musky, woodsy notes to create elegant scents. Plus, the rise of non-dessert gourmands, those that capture the scent of more savory foods, also provides plenty of non-sweet options for guys looking to explore this fragrance family.
What’s the History of Gourmand Colognes?
Gourmand fragrances officially came onto the scene in 1992 with the launch of Angel by Thierry Mugler. This fragrance achieves a delicate balance between sweetness and elegance, containing notes of ethyl maltol, a synthetic scent of cotton candy and caramel, along with natural patchouli, sweet red fruits, and a floral base.
However, Angel’s unofficial title as the “first” gourmand has not gone uncontested. In 1978, L’Artisan Parfumeur launched Vanilia, the first fragrance to use sweet ethyl maltol. And, to many people, Angel smelled similar to Nirmala, a fragrance launched by Molinard in 1955. But, Angel deserves the credit it gets for being one of the first fragrances to achieve a genius balance between sweet and edgy.
Whether you’re already a fan of these “edible” scents who’s looking to delve even deeper or you’re interested in venturing into gourmands for the first time, here’s some of my favorites.
5 Great Gourmand Fragrances to Try
Smell like a Coffee Shop
Bond No 9 New Haarlem Cologne is a modern, well balanced coffee fragrance. This is a great scent for a cozy fall day — you’ll smell like a delicious café.
Calvin Klein DARK OBSESSION for Men Eau de Toilette proves that vanilla can be bold. I don’t know where vanilla gets its dull reputation. As a fragrance it’s quite potent and sensual. This is definitely a date night or evening fragrance.
Angel Men Pure Malt by Thierry Mugler Eau De Toilette Spray an fragrant ode to whiskey. What’s not to like? It’s one to wear on a night out or a casual weekend day.
Penhaligon’s Juniper Sling Eau de Toilette, if gin is more your thing. It’s a unisex fragrance that is fun and has that crisp juniper smell. A nice, light and sweet fragrance.
Watermelon, Meet Chocolate
Lacoste Eau de Lacoste L.12.12 Noir Eau de Toilette for Men, basil, watermelon and chocolate. The combination of scents may sound strange but they make it work. I think it’s one you just have to try.