Editor-at-large Alexi Duggins is at your mercy. So you decided to rub his nose in it at Sip/Sniff
There’s an easy way to match a wine to your natural scent. Just drink enough of the stuff and hey presto! Your morning-after bodily juices will reek of the crisp high notes and oaky nose of corner-shop plonk.At Sip/Sniff, however, a night at Broadway Market’s Stories Bar, they go about it more elaborately.
In a baffling ritual, you’re given different wines to sample. Each is paired with a bit of card pre-sprayed with eau de toilette. You sip the booze, sniff the fragrance then try to figure out what ‘personality’ they project. This is somehow meant to increase your understanding of how to pick a perfume or wine which will send certain signals to your date. Or, indeed, anyone with a working nose.
Unfortunately, that’s not me. ‘It’s so easy to use wine and perfume to portray yourself differently,’ says Clara Rubin, an ex-Gordon Ramsay sommelier who runs the night with ‘purveyor of olfactory adventures’ Odette Toilette. All I have to do is work out what signals the scents send. ‘Now, what does this first wine smell of?’ ‘Erm, grapes?’ ‘Very good! The muscat is one of the only grapes that smells like grapes. Now who do you think would drink this?’ ‘I would. I love sweet wine!’ ‘Right… That’s the one that says “cheap date”. We’ve matched it with a woman’s fragrance.’
I blunder through more scents. My attempt to describe a salty wine: ‘Pineapple’. A fragrance intended for a rugged, outdoorsy beefcake: ‘Ooh! Christmassy!’ At one point, I get so confused that I feel like I’ve just spent ten minutes sniffing a man. And I resort to the spittoon to avoid getting completely twatted. That’s right, ladies: I spit rather than swallow.
‘Final pairing,’ says Clara. ‘It’s for quite a metrosexual sort of man. Can you think of anyone it might suit?’ I scratch my unkemptly hairy chin in thought. ‘Here’s a hint: they don’t take care of their facial hair.’ As I concentrate, I fiddle with the holes in my jumper. ‘They have holes in their jumper… Very effeminate…’ Okay! Okay! I get there eventually. Sip/Sniff Tue Feb 11, 7pm. £27.50.