But there are few mountains of flowers waiting to be processed these days, and no one talks about the price of jasmine or rose petals anymore. Today it's the price of guaiacol, ionone and the other chemicals used in the production of perfume that is discussed over lunch. Changing tastes and the development of modern chemistry laid the foundations of perfumery as we know it today. Alchemy gave way to chemistry and new fragrances were created.
— Columnist Phyllis Macchioni of the Cleveland Plain Dealer goes to Grasse, France, and finds out things ain't like they used to be.
And lots of perfume in The New York Times today:
Inside the industry they speak of Insolence grimly, as of a suicide. Why did LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton buy this gem of a house if the gem is to be mounted in tin? Equally baffling: Insolence was made by an extremely talented perfumer, Maurice Roucel.
— Chandler Burr calls Guerlain's Insolence a 1 star perfume ("offensive"), and gives 3 stars to Guerlain L'Instant ("breathtaking"). Read the rest in Descendants. In the same paper, he talks about how few real flowers are used in perfumery in Ghost Flowers.
The Harrods perfumer Roja Dove and the professional stargazer Shelley von Strunckel hold monthly sold-out dinners at Plateau that diagnose star-crossed fragrance needs. During dinner, von Strunckel sketches the flaws and strengths of each sign, while Dove matches signs with compatible smells — for example, rose, the scent for Taurus, and jasmine, the one for Leo, are a perfect match.
— Columnist Mark Ellwood attends a "Gastrology" dinner.