Mr. Lim Kok Leon, an elderly durian farmer in Penang, Malaysia and self-proclaimed “King of Durian” thought using the durian flowers to make a perfume was a better idea. Back when we were durian n00bs, Mr. Lim introduced us to what a good durian should taste like, and this year brought me some of his prize Red Prawn (Ang Har) for my birthday. He also introduced us to his Durian Flower Perfume, of which he is very proud.
Durian flowers have a heavy, sweet odor. Some say they smell like a deep honey, or sort of milky, like an aerial cream. It definitely smells sophisticated.
I’m going to be honest here: I’m not certain what a durian flower smells like. I’ve seen them, but I guess I’ve never leaned in for a big whiff. So I’m not certain how accurately this perfume captures the essence of the durian flower. On this one I’m trusting Mr. Lim, who is a genuine durian lover and definitely knows his durian. That’s my disclaimer. Next time I come across a durian flower I will remember to give it a sniff.
I did try to talk Mr. Lim into making a durian perfume. It would at least make a great gag gift, yes? I can just imagine if I sprayed some in our home while Rob was out – he would just about tear the place apart looking for the nonexistent durian. Hilarious.
But until I convince someone that capturing the sulfur-y volatiles of durian in a bottle is worth the effort, I hope you get a kick out of this more sophisticated and certainly less objectionable durian flower perfume.