03 October 2010

Chrysanthemum Distillate (almost)

Dia de los Muertos approaches, and attempts to find a fitting drink to accompany lent an eye being cast towards Chrysanthemums. Symbolic and representative of death (but not deadly), they befell the fate of being drowned and passed through the Rotovap. Initially a deep green/black, the crystal clear liquor that came off was separated into heads, hearts and tails to determine where the true essence of the flower resided. As water was added, the oleoresin present in the distillates louched a gentle cloudiness and opened up the aroma. However, despite a noticeable difference between the cuts, and interesting aromas of glasshouses, humid foliage and gentle aromatics, the delicate floral notes were lost. An informative failure; 69 Colebrooke Row- human after all!


erik_flannestad said...


For me the flower most symbolic and related to the Day of the Dead are Marigolds (Tagetes erecta).

Perhaps this is some common name misunderstanding between the UK and the US?

Chrysanthemums are definitely Asian in origin, not New World plants.


Absolutely, traditionally Marigold accompanied Dia de los Muertos, hence why they will feature heavily with the party, but chrysanthemums are also associated with death- particularly in Europe so they seemed a suitable candidate. They also lend a much more morbid colour than that of the delicate orange of marigolds!