Explorations: Patchouli and Yuzu

One could be tempted to call Patchouli the Lavender of the East, so widespread and common are its uses. The properties attributed to Patchouli oil in the literature are numerous. It is beneficial for skin ailments such as bacterial and fungal infections. It regenerates tissue and supports wound healing. It prevents water retention, counteracts stress and is generally uplifting. Franchomme and Pénoël emphasize especially its “phlebotonic” quality which makes it specifically effective in the treatment of varicose veins. They also recommend it as one of the more specific oils to treat acne.

Patchouli oil is a commodity traded in rather large quantities, so much of the product on the market has passed through the usual industrial brokerages and is standardized in one way or another.

In the 18th and 19th century silk traders packed their cloth with Patchouli to prevent moths from laying their eggs.
While Patchouli is produced in many different locales around tropical Asia, experts claim that the oil from the northwestern most province of Sumatra, Aceh, is one of, if not the best provenance.

At this point we have two lots on offer, one from a COOP in Aceh Barat (West Aceh) and one from Aceh Selatan (South Aceh). The oil from Aceh Barat is extremely well rounded and may faintly trigger a chocolate reminiscence. Its richness derives from growing in the low lying coastal areas. The oil from Aceh Selatan is mild and sweet, its delicate and balanced scent comes from the proximity of the medium altitude growing areas to the coast. Both of these provenances are also those sought after by the large perfume houses as the high end Patchouli used in fine perfumery.

These COOPs have been established with the help of international aid in a bid to reconstruct after the devastating 2006 Tsunami. Both provenances show, next to the obligatory Patchoulol good amounts of the marker components Pogostol and Pogostone.

Yuzu is an extremely popular as flavoring agent in Japan. It is lemon-fruity but with a tang.
Citrus junos grows wild in Tibet, Korea and in China.  It has bee cultivated in Japan since the 10th century. Today it is cultivated on a commercial scale in Kochi Prefecture on the island of Shikoku.

The essential oil is cold pressed, displaying an exquisite citrus aroma suggesting a coming together of grapefruit and mandarin, with hints of bergamot and lime. What makes Yuzu so special is its very dry, tangy nature.

It is refreshing and uplifting As is common with Citrus oils it has powerful anti-bacterial action which might explain its popularity in Japanese folk medicine.
Inspired by its Japanese uses it can be tried with stress, burn-out, nervous tension or anxiety. Yuzu needs to be tried to experience its complexity which sets it apart from other Citrus oils.

« Back To Daily Posts