When we interviewed Alexandra Shulman, she told us she’s a fan of unlikely pairings. What a coincidence then that Jo Malone’s newest fragrance – Basil & Neroli – is a perfect unlikely pairing actually inspired by a lark around London. With basil at its heart, and a completely unexpected twist of neroli, this is our new favorite fragrance for Fall, and a welcome addition to Jo Malone London’s citrus family. The new scent is a gift to the senses, and – being us – we couldn’t help but explore spraying and playing with it in our favorite room in the house: The kitchen.
We picked one of our favorite women – Edie Parker’s Brett Heyman – who we thought encompassed the Jo Malone brand, to cook up two recipes in her Upper East Side kitchen inspired by the Basil & Neroli scent: A fresh Caprese salad with lots of basil, and a campari blood orange cocktail (cue Neroli’s color). We sprayed, we splattered olive oil, we sliced and diced tomatoes all to the backtrack of a scent that brings us somewhere splendid; think Kate Moss galavanting between Bond Street and Covent Garden.
Luckily we also had the quintessential Jo Malone London woman in the kitchen with us, and we plugged Heyman for beauty and food hacks galore, including her two, super simple recipes. It was all happening: We made our favorite new salad and cocktail combo alongside the fragrance we hand-plucked from many, many options. Because sometimes one perfect scent is all you need in this life, or this lark: potato, potata. See below for the recipes inspired by the fragrance, and our chat with Brett, and peruse above to watch us playing in the kitchen!
What would be your ideal fall day in NYC?
My fantasy would be sleeping in, which you can’t do with three children. I would then go to brunch at Amaranth followed by a walk through Central Park. I’d stop at the MoMA, drop off the kids, and have a quick cocktail outside at The Surrey with my husband followed by dinner.
What’s your signature dish for entertaining and why?
Unfussy Italian food is always best and a crowd-pleaser. In season, I’ll make a tomato and mozzarella with tomato and basil from my garden followed by simple pasta with tomato sauce or cacio e pepe.
What do you always bring to a dinner party? What do you always put out when hosting one?
I like to bring something from the country, so if apples are in season I’ll bring apples. If not, I’ll bring honey or maple syrup, which are awesome from our home in Connecticut.
I always put out freshly baked bread. Carbs be damned!
What is your best beauty secret?
The basics: Don’t go to sleep with makeup, get plenty of rest and drink lots of water. Don’t tell anyone!
What’s your cocktail of choice?
I vacillate between Titos straight up with olives or Patron Silver with three limes.
What are 5 kitchen items you couldn’t live without?
Vitamix, mini food processor, good knives, lemon juicer, and a pepper grinder.
If you could put the name of any ingredient or food on an Edie Parker clutch, what would it be?
We just put Kale on a bag. It was slightly sarcastic but I really do love kale.
Caprese Salad (inspired by the basil in the scent)
1 8.8 Ounce Mozzarella
4 Heirloom Tomatoes
1 oz Basil
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt & Pepper
Thinly slice the tomatoes and mozzarella and arrange on a platter, with basil leafs in between. Sprinkle more basil leaves on top (and some extra cherry tomatoes if you’d like!). Top with Extra Virgin Olive Oil, the best Balsamic Vinaigrette you can find, and salt and pepper to taste.
Blood Orange Campari Cocktail (inspired by the neroli in the scent)
2 ounces Blood Orange Juice (Regular Orange Juice also works)
½ ounce Campari
1 ounce Vodka*
1 fresh Blood Orange (if in season)
Muddle together blood orange juice, Campari, and vodka. Shake with ice and strain into a glass. Top with a splash of sparkling water and squeeze the fresh blood orange over the top for an added kick.
*In collaboration with Jo Malone
Photographed by Danielle Kosann