Why is it so fragrant?

Why is it so fragrant?

Freshly picked roses are used to make an intoxicating plant spice called rose oil.

Written by: Lachena S. Sachasin

PHOTO BY TUUL AND BRUNO MORANDI

Translated by Xu Yue

Long before sunrise, Teg Singh arrived at his own flower garden on the banks of the Ganges. He circled around the rose bush, plucked the blooming flowers, and threw the pink petals into the sack that was draped over his shoulder. As the first rays of sunlight fell on the river, Singh, 35, mounted his motorcycle and transported his harvest to the small city of Gennaurj, the perfume capital of India.

For more than 400 years, Gennauger has been using the time-tested distillation method to craft an oil-based plant-based perfume called rose oil.

In the ancient Indian culture obsessed with perfume, rose oil was sought after by Mughal royals and ordinary people, and in recent years, rose oil has evoked a new generation of enthusiasts to love its refreshing aroma.

Unlike modern perfumes, which use alcohol as a carrier because alcohol is cheap, neutral and easy to disperse, traditional rose oil uses sandalwood oil as a base, making it more oily and easily absorbed. A drop of rose oil is applied to the skin and the aroma can sometimes last for several days. Rose oil gives off a strong smell of flowers, wood, musk, smoke or grass, which both men and women will be attracted to. During the colder season, rose oil with the scents of cloves, cardamom and saffron can bring warmth. During the warmer months, rose oil brings cool aromas of jasmine, vetiver and marigold.

Gennauger produces this rose oil, as well as the mysterious mitti rose oil, which reminiscent of the earthy after rain due to the use of roasted alluvial soil used in the distillation process. Another fascinating invention is shamama, which is distilled from a mixture of more than 40 kinds of flowers, herbs and resins, which takes days to make and then ages for several months. Some perfume companies in Europe use these rose oils, such as rose, vetiver and jasmine-blended rose oils, as one of the raw materials, which is a striking ingredient in the composition of modern perfumes.

In the narrow alleys of the Barra Bazaar, the main market of Gennaugj, shops are filled with glass bottles of rose oil and ruh, or essential oil, one incense after another. The men sit cross-legged on floor mats, sniffing small bottles and wiping them behind their ears with extra-long cotton swabs soaked in perfume. Controlling this ancient business is the rose oil “sazh”, or perfumer, who attracts guests with a skill as great as alchemy.

“The best perfumers in the world walk these narrow alleys, walking through mud and cow dung just to get Genauj’s rose oil. It doesn’t get much better than it. “Planjar Kapoor said that he was M. The fifth-generation partner of L. Ramnarayne Perfume Company, one of the companies still using traditional distillation methods here.

Teg Singh arrived, and he unloaded his own roses in the stack of Kapoor, an open-air courtyard used as a distillation ground. Kapoor’s rose oil master Ram Singh scooped the petals into a copper still and poured water on it. Before tightening the lid, Ram Singh wrapped the edges of the container with a mixture made of clay and cotton, which hardened and sealed excellently. When the flowers are cooked, the steam passes through a bamboo tube and enters a copper pot filled with sandalwood oil from the still, which immediately absorbs the saturated rose steam.

For five or six hours when Teg Singh’s roses turned into rose oil, Ram Singh walked back and forth between the still and the pot, measuring the water temperature, listening to the “hissing” sound of steam, and intuitively determining whether he needed to add wood to the fire. “I’ve been doing this since I was a kid.” Lahm Singh, 50, said.

In order to achieve the desired quality, the process is repeated the next day with a new batch of rose petals. After production, the rose oil is aged for several months in a bottle made of camel skin, which absorbs moisture from the rose oil. Rose oil is comparable to liquid gold, and a kilogram can sell for $3,000.

Today, most of the rose oil produced by Genau is sold to Muslim communities in the Middle East and India. Built in the 17th century by Mughal king Shah Jahan, Delhi’s Moonlight Bazaar is a historic shop selling rose oil and modern perfumes. The shop is almost always crowded with Muslim men looking for rose oil to make themselves fragrant before Friday prayers and festivals like Eid al-Fitr. But the local market is not enough to keep the distilleries in Gennaugj operating, and many have been forced to close or switch to producing imitations of Western perfumes.

Still, Kapoor is optimistic. He spends a lot of time lobbying top international perfume companies to promote the tradition of rose oil and the qualities of the genauj botanical essential oil. “Westerners are shifting their tastes to Eastern scents,” he says, “and usually, they prefer light citrus, but now you’ll find big names like Dior, Hermès, and of course perfume companies in the Middle East, pursuing rich scents like rose and sama.” ”

Perhaps the most prominent global ambassador for rose oil is Jaenvi Lahota Nandan, who was born in the perfume-loving Indian city of Lucknow, trained in Europe for seven years to become a perfume master, and then founded perfume libraries in Goa, India and Paris, France.

The distillation process of Nandan is like poetry, a quirk and a science. Every year she creates a new fragrance or two, and rose oil is an important part of her fragrance.

“Rose oil goes straight to the soul. In a small space, all the flames and smoke are like the end of the world, but it’s also real and beautiful,” she said. ”

The above is the introduction and description of Rose Essential Oil Distiller for Plant Effective Ingredient Extraction, I hope it can be helpful to you.