Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Review: Eggnog - The Library of Fragrance (Demeter), a festive gourmand. Plus a giveaway!

 Festive eggy booze

Last Christmas I wrote a post about two fragrances that bewitched me with the scent of Christmas trees, a natural and outdoorsy tribute to the festive season. This year I’ve hit upon the opposite – a cosy pleasure to be consumed indoors.

Those of you who know my tastes will be aware that gourmands have not made a frequent appearance at Odiferess. Although they are adored by many I personally prefer to devour sweet food within my mouth rather than daub it onto my skin. My slightly wobbly belly confirms this. Christmas however is a time of excessive gastronomy, so with that in mind I bring you the boozy vanilla confection that is The Library of Fragrance (Demeter in the USA)– Eggnog.

Despite being an occasional boozehound, I’ve never drunk an eggnog. Does it actually have eggs in it? I’ll leave that to those earnest gym types that swill a raw one down for its muscle building properties. It does appear to contain more delicious ingredients though and they smell superbly festive in this creation.

Eggnog is primarily a cinnamon scent with a great wodge of boozy rum and sweet (and slightly burnt) vanilla underpinning it. The cinnamon serves to lift the composition and create a spicy top note that stops it from being too cloying. It’s really rather clever. As I write I am wearing Ambre de Merveilles by Hermes on one arm and Eggnog on the other. The instant swoop to gloopy base notes that has always rendered ‘Ambre’ my least favourite of the Merveilles trilogy, makes for an interesting comparison. A little of Eggnog’s spiciness would be a welcome hit of perkiness here.

Ye olde vanilla plant

The main reason that I want to draw your attention to Eggnog is that it makes a £9.99 alternative to a significantly more expensive scent. Lovers of L’ Artisan Parfumeur’s Vanille Absolument will discover distinct similarities in this creation. Whilst Vanille Absolument lacks cinnamon, it does have a powerful clove note that provides a similarly peppery spiced opening. The booze and vanilla combination is almost identical, arousing sensations of times past and the great voyages of the spice routes. The ghosts of many a pissed pirate sozzle amongst Eggnog’s replicant rum cask.

You can find Eggnog in the UK at larger Boots stores and on the Boots website. If you want to chance your luck at a freebie, I am giving away a 10 ml decant from my bottle for one reader. To enter, leave a comment below or on the Facebook page and answer my question: Why do you think gourmand fragrances are so popular amongst the fragrance community? If you can’t be bothered just say hello and I’ll enter you anyway! Entry is open until midnight Sunday 21st December UK time, winner will be announced shortly after.

I’m sorry that the draw is only open to UK readers due to our daft postal laws. I apologise on behalf on my country. 

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Ultimate eggnog recipe, courtesy of Jamie Oliver
Serves 8
     3 cups (700ml) whole milk
     1 cup (240ml) heavy or double cream
     3 cinnamon sticks
     1 vanilla bean pod, split and seeds removed
     1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg, plus more for garnish
     5 eggs, separated
     2/3 (130g) cup granulated sugar
     3/4 cup (175ml) Bacardi Dark Rum, or bourbon


  1. I think Gourmands have become a big part of people's collections as they have the ability to transport you to a comforting place, they can unlock a 'foodie' related memory or time in your past. I'm not a huge gourmand person myself and the only fragrance I own that has this effect on me is Hermes Ambre Narguille which makes me think of a cold day cuddled up with the wife eating hot apple pie/crumble has a warming feeling to the fragrance. Obviously we are all different and will have different associations with gourmands but that's my take. Merry Christmas :)

  2. Interesting Aaron, the word 'comfort' seems to arise frequently in discussions about gourmands. It seems linked to 'comfort eating' in that it serves some sort of cosy and warming purpose. I think spraying scent is probably a lot healthier than troffing cheesy buttery mash potato which is where I find my comfort!

  3. (not an entry)

    I could never think of drinking an eggnog for the same reason: an idea of consuming an uncooked egg is completely repulsive to me - in addition to not liking that taste (as a child I had to eat some home-made "remedies" based on raw yolks).

    Not being a big fan of Gourmands, I can't offer an explanation to why some people like them so much. I have at least several perfumes from that category in my collection but they are seriously outnumbered by non-gourmand perfumes.

    1. Hi Undina,
      My collection is far from gourmand too. I am very attracted to green or floral chypres at the moment, the chillier and snootier the better. A look over Fragrantica's new 'gourmand' club section reveals a whopping number of fans though. I wonder if there is an age factor in this? I imagine that exceptionally sweet and vanillic scents could appeal to a very young audience. What do you think?
      P.S. I tried to join in on one of your posts recently and the comments section wouldn't work. I don't know if it was my log in with the issue but I wonder if anyone else had a problem?

    2. I've never heard any complaints: As far as I know, I opened all types of IDs... Can you try again? I would hate not to have you as my guest for technical reasons.

    3. Hi Undina, I just managed to leave a comment on your Delonghi post, it's fine now. It might have been my Wordpress account.

  4. Interesting to read the comparisons with Ambre des Merveilles, which I quite like, but agree that it was sweetish and went straight to the base rather quickly. I fear I wouldn't really like this one, not being a fan of boozy notes in a perfume - Havana Vanille, as I still think of the L'Artisan scent - didn't work for me. But great news for anyone who would appreciate a dupe of kinds. Oh, and I do like the odd Snowball, mind, and I believe that has egg in it, haha - and booze!