Cooking with Angel - presenting four recipes inspired by Mugler's classic fragrance
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22nd December, 2010

Angel Perfume - Top Note: Bergamot, Mandarin Middle Note: Passion Fruit, Peach, Apricot Base Note: Patchouli, Vanilla, Chocolate, Caramel - These are the fragrance notes of Angel as per perfume descriptions on many a scent retailer site and what fragrance counter representatives will tell you. There is also, on some perfume blogs, further references to this fragrance for women contains a blend of vanilla, caramel, sandalwood, patchouli, blackcurrant, fresh citrus, melons, peaches and plums. What is agreed on, across the board, is that this is angelic perfume that you almost want to lick off whoever is wearing it or drink it straight from the bottle. To say it’s for the hedonist is no understatement – nor to suggest it takes it’s fragrance notes from home comforts and recipe books on classic desserts – is far off the mark. This is a fragrance for the food fanatic – and the one who eats dessert first.

When Thierry Mugler launched his famed Angel perfume in 1992 the love affair between this fragrance and its consumer devotees was like most great love affairs: instant. Call it love at first breath or leastways, love at first inhalation. Moreover, better than the average, ‘best’ love affair, the adoration was as long lasting as it was immediate. Conversely, among fragrance writers, the love affair was not quite instant. Sweet, candied perfumes have a way of not immediately garnering respect; creating fruity, sweet, ‘foodie’ perfume isn’t too esteemed and few perfumes manage to reach an exalted level when they go that route. But in time, with the leathery patchouli accents counterpointing the sweet froth within, Angel got the nod from the industry as well as the ladies who lunch. Not to mention, the aesthetic branding of the perfume (in blue glass star decanters) that are (how green is that and all before green was in…) refillable captured an enduring following. What’s not to love about a perfume that makes you smell like a candied siren and comes in a beautiful bottle that is less expensive because you can refill it?

Given the hype and loyalty Angel receives, it’s easy to explain how why almost two decades later, despite the plethora of perfumes on the market in an industry that is beyond burgeoning with new blooms year in, year out, Angel continues to dominate the ‘best selling’ perfume on countless perfume sites?

In his own words, Mugler is quoted on the Angel website, concerning his offspring, Angel: “This is a romance that is not all fluff.” Truth is, who could resist the sweet floral that somehow delivered candied notes in a fresh way?

Although the components of Angel are a closely guarded secret, Angel is renown for its gourmand-inspired sensibility, rife with essences of honey, chocolate and caramel. Blended with notes of vanilla, patchouli and sandalwood, Angel is definitely a romantic fragrance but one that takes itself seriously. In other words, it takes playful elements of welcome sweetness: chocolate, vanilla, caramel, berries, honey and citrusy-sweet bergamot which, like and fuses them into a bouquet of heady delights. As one Angel representative confided with me, ‘if you like food or are seduced by desserts and all things gourmet, this perfume is for you’. For a pastry chef who is also in love with fragrance, it isn’t then, a great leap to take Angel as a starting point and inspiration to create some ‘Angel-inspired’ recipes.


Four Angel Recipes

~ Chocolate Mandarin Angel Tea ~

~ Angel Honey Cake ~

~ Bergamot Angel Brownies with Earl Grey Ganache ~

~ Angel Crème Brûlée Blondies ~

(click Next to see the recipes)

About the author: Marcy Goldman

Marcy Goldman is a master baker and cookbook author, as well as mistress of scents. A New York Times, Food and Wine and Washington Post contributor, she also appears on Martha Stewart Sirius frequently. She consults on fragrance and dabbles in her own creations, as well as writes about scent in all its incantations for and her own column, Scent of a Baker, at her site,


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    • Natural_Juice | 22nd December 2010 13:43

      Hi Marcy:

      Fun to see this here! At first I thought you might actually be cooking *with* Angel, and that would be something. The recipes look yummy. I know we were supposed to connect after Dec. 4th sometime, but wow, this has been a very busy year. Maybe after the fourth of January! Take care and happy holidays.


      PS I've written some articles here, and some book reviews. Glad to see you here.

    • msmith139 | 22nd December 2010 14:55

      They all sound for the Holidays!

    • Sunnyfunny | 22nd December 2010 17:11

      What intriguing recipes! Creme brulee icing? Earl Grey ganache? Sounds very adventurous, and I can't wait to try these.

      Your article leaves me wanting to revisit Angel. I first tried it a couple years ago and it was a very peppery, berry-sweet concoction on me, and unpleasant, to my nose. I have a friend who wears it well- it is a wonderful spiced caramel on her. Though I doubt I will suddenly be able to enjoy Angel on my skin (although you never know...), I'm interested to see if a couple years' worth of sniffing brings a few more facets of that perfume to the surface.

    • JeanieE | 23rd December 2010 15:49

      Never thought I could wear Angel: got a sample This past summer. Turns out, it is GORGEOUS on me in winter weather! Who knew?? And yes, it puts me in the mood to bake! Great idea linking the inspiration of delicious fragrance with delicious-sounding recipes!:thumbup:


    • BetsyMeszaros | 26th December 2010 19:41

      Thanks for reminding me how great Angel can be. I haven't worn it in years but it will definitely be my FOTD at least one day next week.:smiley:

    • AppleNerd | 27th December 2010 22:14

      I'm going to cook the Angel Chocolate Velvet Honey Cake in the next few days :)

      will report back as to how it tastes

      EDIT: It's tastes really good :)

    • CX827 | 31st December 2010 05:16

      thanks for the recipe

      gonna try to make the earl grey ganache.

    • GelbeDomino | 2nd January 2011 18:19

      The title reminds me of an event I attended a few years ago, where fragrances were one of the ingredients of the menu: I had oysters with Ana´s Ana´s, wild boar with Le Male, milk shakes with Angel...

    • Mr. Bon Vivant | 12th January 2011 05:36

      I love this idea! It reminds me of the dinners hosted by Chandler Burr that are inspired by fragrance. I'm going to give these recipes a try... Thank you for providing new ways to look at scent!

    • Guest 3 | 6th February 2011 18:51

      My Angel dessert connection is blueberry cobbler - the berries and the caramelizing sugar. :)