Amaretto on the rocks, anyone…?  Well, these days you won’t only find this liqueur in a glass, but in some gourmand fragrances.  It gets its name from the Italian word ‘amaro’ (for bitter) – even though the legendary alcoholic drink (lugged back home from many a Duty Free) is actually sweet and almond-y.

We rather love the story of Amaretto, which has its roots in the Saronno region of Italy (hence the name ‘Amaretto di Sironno’, on the label).  Allegedly, in 1525, a Saronno church commissioned one of Leonardo da Vinci’s pupils, artist Bernardino Luini, to daub their sanctuary with frescoes. As the church was dedicated to the Virgin Mary, Luini needed to depict the Madonna, but was short of a model.  Enter a young, widowed innkeeper, who sat for the painter – and also, it’s said, became his lover.  She wanted to show her gratitude with a gift, and soaked apricot kernels in brandy, presenting the concoction to Luini.  And so, Amaretto (the drink) was born.

The fragrance note itself is synthetically created, adding a touch of syrupy bitter-sweetness – most often, as we’ve said, to gourmand perfumes.

Smell Amaretto in:

Cartier Le Baiser du Dragon

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