The Art of Flavor, by Michelin-starred chef Daniel Patterson and renowned natural perfumer Mandy Aftel, is not strictly speaking a cookbook. Instead, it’s a primer on cooking that nods toward principles of perfumery, including texture, persistence, balance, and contrast and even top, heart, and base notes. Each chapter presents a series of lessons, such as “TheFour Rules of Flavor (example: similar ingredients need a contrasting flavour)” with basic recipes to experiment with. Chapters are sprinkled with fascinating quotes from historic food and perfume texts. The lessons build upon each other. By the end, a careful reader can confidently shop a farmer’s market, knowing the principles for combining flavours and cooking techniques to create a satisfying dish from scratch, with no recipe necessary.
The Art of Flavor: Practices and Principles for Creating Delicious Food, Daniel Patterson, Mandy Aftel, Riverhead Books, August 2017, 276 pages, $28.
This review has been published in Nez, the olfactory magazine – #04 – Art and Perfume. This issue is available on www.nez-editions.us for North America and on the Auparfum Shop for other countries.