BLACK PEPPER, THE KING OF SPICES
Tinged with a certain historical quality, Black Pepper is a distinctive ingredient. Revered for its importance in trade, the spice as it’s commonly known of as Black Gold has maintained its hold in international palates.
Originally grown in India, specifically the Malabar coast, the spice was first taken to Indonesian islands to Pacific Islands to Africa & America. Predominantly used for seasoning, pepper was a must-have at noble tables, a monopoly that extended to the 1400s, when the spice trade opened up. Indeed, the value of pepper was held very dear – for instance, when the Visigoths attacked Rome in 401 AD, the ransom paid for Roman citizens comprised several tons of gold and silver, thousands of tunics and hides and 3000 pounds of pepper. Apart from seasoning, it is used to in curing muscle aches and aromatherapy.
In perfumery, the essential oil is derived through steam distillation of the dried, unripe fruit. The aroma tends to be warm, soothing and spicy as well as fresh, the blend of which adds a bit of depth to the scent. Today, Indian & Indonesian pepper is primarily used in distillation.
Though it is often used as top note to pique interest, for our Calicut perfume, we’ve used Black Pepper as a heart note. The heart notes form the body of the perfume and emerge when the top notes dissipate. Along with black pepper, we have used nutmeg and cedarwood for the heart notes which add a sweet & spicy pungency and sombre woodiness, respectively, that all together provides a well-rounded body of scents.