Saturday Question: Do You Like Tomatoes? In Perfumes?

It is Saturday again. My short after-Labor-Day week went in a haze. Literally. Marine layer that came down on SF Bay Area after the record high temperatures over the past weekend (+40C/104F where I live), was trapped by the smoke from all the fires in the surrounding areas, creating completely surreal effect. We haven’t seen sun or even sky for several days. The picture that I used for the theme instead of the regular calming landscape, was taken at 10 AM this Wednesday. Lights controlled by sensors had never turned off that day, and from the moment pictured, it was getting only darker – until day flowed into the night. Rusty looked extremely confused by the absence of the day (or maybe we just projected our own feelings). By tonight, it got better visibility-wise, but our air quality fluctuates between “Unhealthy” and “Very Unhealthy,” robbing us off a small luxury of our switch-the-work-day-off walks. But it is Saturday, and the thought of seeing you here answering my silly questions and engaging in conversations with me and each other, lifts my spirits.

 

Saturday Question Hazy Bay Area

 

Saturday Question #29:

Do You Like Tomatoes? In Perfumes?

When we talk about tomato scent, we do not mean the fruit itself, but mostly the foliage that produces that distinct aroma. Of course, tomatoes also have their own more delicate smell, but it’s aroma from leaves that in our brain is associated with “real” tomatoes (as an opposite to the plastic-like standard supermarket produce).

Do you like tomato leaves scent in perfumes? Do you know/wear any perfumes that have that distinct scent profile?

Bonus question: Do you like eating tomatoes?

My Answer

A month ago I complained that, with farmers markets closed due to the quarantine, we missed out on the most of the seasonal fruit. For the same reason this year I missed my 2-months window when I usually eat local tomatoes. It upsets me enormously because fresh heirloom tomatoes with mozzarella, basil, balsamic vinegar and truffle salt is something I look forward to the whole year from one season to the next. I tried buying those tomatoes at a store, but they do not come even close to what I got used to in the last 5-6 years of buying fresh local tomatoes in season.

Being upset about my tomato-less diet, I turned to the only perfume with pronounced tomato leaf note that I have – No 16 (Tomato Leather) from the local San Francisco brand COGNOSCENTI. Many years ago I got samples from the brand at the First Artisan Fragrance Salon. If you’re curious, you can read my post You say ‘Tomato’, I say ‘Leather’, which, among other things about this perfume, has a link to The New York Times article that explains why most of the tomatoes produced in the U.S. are tasteless. Since I published that post, I finished the samples and bought a 5 ml travel spray of Tomato Leather.

 

Cognoscenti Tomato Leather

 

I still like it and wear from time to time (it’s quite strong, so a spray or two go long way), but today I’m in the mood for more tomato and less leather. It must be all that smoke in the air (though, I must admit that Tomato Leather masks any surrounding odors extremely well).

Do you have any recommendations for perfume with a pronounced tomato vine note?

 

Do You Like Tomatoes?

 

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33 thoughts on “Saturday Question: Do You Like Tomatoes? In Perfumes?

      • The tomato leaf note is also prominent in Folavril, but that one’s discontinued. I didn’t realize there was a tomato leaf not in Chevrefeuille.
        Sisley’s Eau de Campagne has a gorgeous tomato leaf note. And the I hate Perfume line has one that’s all about tomatoes: I think it’s called Scent of Kindness.
        I know what you mean about the tomatoes: they’re so delicious! I eat a lot of them, when they’re available here.

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        • I’m not sure I’ve ever tried that Sisley perfume! (and good luck doing it now :( ). But I’m happy to report that I managed to buy quite tasty tomatoes this weekend. Yay!

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  1. I love eating tomatoes! My sister would say I am obsessed with tomatoes. My favourites are organic and come from the Isle of Wight. But strangely I loathe the smell of tomato leaves and as a child got quite upset if I brushed up against them and would scrub my skin to get the smell off.

    Can’t remember now all the perfumes that perversely (to my mind!) have this as a note as I avoid them.

    I have been so gutted to see the devastation going on at the moment – I almost feel like the whole world is on fire one way or another. Please keep safe.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m not sure I’d like to smell of tomato leaves too often, but I LOVE the scent. I’ll probably brave a farmers market tomorrow to see if I can get some tomatoes… Though, now I wonder if being grown locally they accumulate anything from the air.

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  2. I love tomato leaf as a note, especially during the hottest days of the  year. My all time favorite is Parfum d’Empire Corsica Furiosa. I also love Diptyque L’Ombre das L’Eau, Sisley Eau de Campagne, Hermes Un Jardin Sur le Nil and CB I Hate Perfume Memory of Kindness.  

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    • I tried Corsica Furiosa, but while I liked it, I remember being slightly disappointed because I didn’t get tomato leaf (I remember that I wasn’t upset by not smelling honey in it though ;) ).

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  3. I do like tomatoes, and the smell of tomato leaves. St. Clair Scents’ Gardener’s Glove has a nice tomato leaf note and it’s beautiful. Un Jardin Sur le Nil has a tomato note, as PL67 says above, and I love that too.
    I’m lucky that our farmer’s markets have been open again for a while, in time for peaches and tomatoes. I’ve been growing tomatoes myself this summer, with mixed success because of chipmunks, birds, and other critters getting to them first, but the kind I really love and don’t grow myself are the “beefsteak” tomatoes, the really big heirloom ones that you can slice thick for sandwiches. Toasted bread, mayonnaise, tomato slices, salt and pepper — that’s it! But I must say, Undina, your tomato salad sounds wonderful and I must try it!

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    • Un Jardin Sur le Nil is one of my favorites from before I actually thought or cared about the notes, so I didn’t even know that it had tomato leaves note in it. I should spray some on to see if I can smell it now knowing that it’s there.

      I’m surprised that you haven’t tried “my” salad combination: it’s rather ubiquitous here in California, so I was sure that I was the last one who learned about it, being not local. You can do it both as a salad or as a strange mini “sandwiches”: a slice of heirloom tomato drizzled with a balsamic vinegar (not a fruity one, but a regular or aged) and a pinch of a truffle salt, then a slice of fresh mozzarella, again drizzled with balsamic vinegar, and either a small basil leaf or chopped basil… I get hungry just writing about it :)

      Liked by 1 person

      • I should have been more clear — what caught my eye (and nose!) was your addition of truffle salt to the classic Caprese salad! Yum yum! That’s the part I haven’t tried, and it sounds so good. Inspired by you, I went to our local farmer’s market yesterday and bought ripe heirloom tomatoes and mozzarella to make your version. I grow my own basil, so I’m halfway there! Now to find some truffle salt …

        What IS it about truffles that makes their scent and flavor so alluring?

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    • Usually we do not really … not even need (we don’t need almost any) but want those perfumes we’re arguing with ourselves about buying. Those perfumes should be bought only if we come across a really good deal, or if we suddenly learn that perfume in question has been discontinued. Then we try to catch the very last bottle available on some obscure site :)

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  4. LOVE tomatoes Undina,
    Was splitting Paris-Riviera today and I found myself smelling tomato leaves mixed in with the cologne. Not a mentioned note but it was definitely there.
    We just put Beefsteak tomatos and Cherry Grape tomatoes in at BFFs Dad’s place yesterday. Hopefully we’ll get some good fruit off them. Hydroponic tomatoes are good but home grown are so much yummier.
    Portia xx

    Liked by 1 person

      • Many years were spent in the garden with my mum and the gardener. It was incredibly educational and I loved getting in there and making sure the soil was right and the plants placed perfectly. Mum was especially permissive because it was a good clean hobby and we would watch all the gardening shows and read the monthly magazines together. So many happy memories.
        I’m not such a good gardener but find the job of doing it extremely restful and centering.
        It’s the one thing I miss living in an apartment.
        Portia xx

        Liked by 1 person

  5. The photos do look surreal and frightening. Stay safe.
    I don’t have any perfumes with a tomato note, but I thought of Alice & the Magician’s tomato leaf “Elixir,” of which a few drops can be added to a drink to enhance the flavor.
    Now I’m craving a good tomato soup as it’s cooled down to the 60s (F) in New England…

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  6. I don’t eat tomatoes but I like green perfumes with a tomato leaf note. I had a decent of Eau de Campagne and I liked Corsica Furosa mentioned above.

    I think I’d love it more in a scented candle though. Bella Freud does one and Olfictiion are coming out with one under their candle line that sounds interesting.

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  7. I don’t particularly look for tomato leaf perfumes but when I wear a perfume with it, I enjoy it. The 2 that come to mind for me have been mentioned by others: Memo Paris Italian Leather (I have a travel spray) and PdE Corsica Furiosa (a decant).

    As to eating tomatoes, yes! But you would be disappointed to know that the type I eat 99% of the time is grape tomatoes which I add to salad, rice / pasta or to accompany mozzarella plus olive oil and balsamic vinegar 😋.

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  8. OMG, that sight…! I couldn’t guess the time of the day from the picture. Fingers crossed the situation will soon be over…poor nature.
    I think the smell of tomato (leaves) in perfumes is kind of weird and it gives the perfume an edible dimension. I almost feel like I could spray it over a salad but I don’t enjoy it on my skin. I’ve tried only two perfumes with a prominent tomato leaf note: Memo’s Italian Leather and L’ombre Dans L’eau EdP. The EdT is different.

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    • It got a little better (at least, it’s not a continuous solar eclipse any more).

      Nose Prose above has recommended tomato leaf drops that can be used in cocktails – most likely, they can be added to a salad as well ;)

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  9. I love tomatoes, but there can be too much of a good thing. Every year August brings an avalanche of them to our village. I’m sure if I didn’t shave, I’d be sprouting tomato leaves. – As for perfume, I generally dislike a tomato note, as it can get sharp, sour, and grating. (The absolutely worst experience in that respect has been Chevalier Vert from Orchid Scents.)
    But, and that’s a big BUT, everyone interested in a very realistic, very non-aggressive and well blended tomato note should try “Peace” by The World in Scents. It starts with Cannabis and some sweetness, you get the tomato (especially when you almost overspray), and at the end a tiny bit of smoke. Vintage-like. The entire TWIS collection is like that: exceedingly high quality. I can’t praise it too much.

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    • I can’t understand how it might be too much tomatoes :) I mean, as someone who spent months in my grandparents’ garden through crop season for the most fruit and vegetables, I’ve never been tired of those that I loved eating :) But since last week I managed to buy really good tomatoes, I’m slightly less envious of your tomato abundance.

      I’m sorry, I appreciate the recommendation, and I’m slightly curious (I went and read about the brand), bur they lost me at Cannabis: there is absolutely no good reason to use that ingredient in perfumes: it doesn’t smell good, and, in my opinion, it’s a questionable statement. Also, and I know that it’s just me, but I disagree with their typography :). I mean, looking at the collection one would think that it’s someone with absolutely no designer background and experience saw all those cool fonts in their software and decided it would be great to use them all for their perfume labels. I know, that it’s perfume that counts, but for me professionally done labels speak to professionalism. If the brand skims on hiring a professional designer to make their labels, where else do they cut corners?

      I’m not saying that I wouldn’t get their samples at some point, but in the sea of new brands and perfumes one has to “discriminate” based on something, so whenever anything irks me, I do not fight that preconception.

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  10. I have and am intrigued with La Fueille by Miller Harris. It seems as close to the tomato vine sap or oil scent as I’d think anything called perfume could be. A blind buy from TJX, my first impression was respectful but that it was an art for art’s sake effort. But I’ve tested it a few times since (not recently and I’m on a visit next few days) and still would not want to trade it away. I’m forgetting the dry down but think it was a linear scent and masculine. I don’t know any of the other perfumes mentioned here but surprised there are so many. I liked cooked tomatoes better than fresh. RE: tomatoes, have grown several heirloom varieties in seasons past and for fresh I like the big yellow beefsteak types, the striped German, and paste types. RE: your picture, I hope rain will come to the West coast soon. I’ve never lived in a fire prone area and I can’t imagine smelling smoke all day and night nor, especially, sensing the real danger of a wildfire.

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    • We are not “scheduled’ for rain for at least another month, but luckily it got better: air cleared up, and the fire is almost put out. We were able to get out for a walk for the last several evenings. Now we’re hopeful the next heat wave that is coming over the upcoming weekend won’t bring more fires.

      I’ve never grown my own tomatoes (or any vegetables for that matter), but I have a deep respect for those who do it: I’m not sure I would be able to keep anything alive even if my life were to depend on that ;)

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  11. How did I miss a thread about tomatoes and tomato leaf scents? I’m slipping, I guess.
    I love tomatoes, the heirloom varieties and the ones my dad used to grow in our garden. And I love tomato sauce with an anchovy sneaked in there with some garlic and hot peppers. Yum!!

    I also love the scent of tomato leaf, it’s so ‘gardenish’ and fresh. I really love Goutal’s Chevrefeuille and did not realize it had a tomato leaf note. I also enjoy Sisley’s Eau de Campagne and can smell the tomato leaf in it. Malin & Goetz has just released a tomato leaf candle that I tried. The wax smelled really nice, but after I lit it, the candle smelled more generic green and not so ‘tomatoey.’ Bummer!! My favorite ‘green’ candle is Cire Trudon’s
    Abd El-Khader. I think I spelled that correctly.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m glad I’m not hungry because your tomato sauce with anchovies sounds great (love anchovies!).

      I should try to get a Eau de Campagne sample! Everyone says it’s a nice tomato note. Too bad we can’t go to stores to do that any longer.

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