Tara Smith of Olfactoria´s Travels visits Vienna + Photo Essay


Post by Val the Cookie Queen


Hey APJ,

Couldn´t go without taking some Mozart Balls, known as Mozartkugeln here, originally known as Mozart Bonbon. They were first created by a Paul Fürst in 1890 and named after Wolfgang Amadeus himself. Since then there have been others made by other manufacturers, with similar recipes. I only buy the handmade originals and made a trip to downtown Salzburg to get them. They are elegant and utterly delicious.


Tara Smith of Olfactoria´s Travels visits Vienna

So the day finally arrived. I had been excited for weeks. Old jeans, full make-up, minus the red lipstick. Didn´t wanna look like I was heading home after a night´s work as I needed to be on the train by 06.30. Hahaha. I would apply that when I reached my destination. Kiki Voile d’Extrait and Kiki Extrait being the SOTD, bucket of cookies in hand – I headed off to the Bahnhof.

I sat down and made myself comfortable, as did the guy opposite me.


We met in our regular French café in Vienna’s first district just before ten. I arrived shortly after the girls, Birgit, Tara and Sandra, all well known to you as Olfactoria and her team (Olfactoria’s Travels).



When I first met these great ladies, perfume was our common interest. Indeed we spent hours talking new releases, samples, decants, swops and so on. Now as we have got to know each others families, challenges, other loves and hobbies, the friendships are changing and becoming a more fully rounded part of our lives. We breakfasted on teas, cappuccinos, smoked salmon croissants and roasted goat cheese. Birgit took off afterwards to take care of some chores and us three headed off to visit a couple of perfume stores and walk round the city.



Perfume? It´s not quite what it used to be. When you have been a perfume junkie for as long as we have, few things remain really interesting.
We all live in or near big European cities and therefore have had ample opportunity to try so many things. The stores we visited in Vienna though are very lovely, architecturally too, and Sandra (and of course Birgit) are well known to all of them. They made us very welcome. We did have one serious goal, and that was to try Misia, the new Chanel Exclusif. Sadly, but not surprisingly it hadn´t arrived yet. Tara will try it in London next week and let us know if we need it. There was a brief moment in our travels where I totally lost my mind and sprayed Nicolai Cuir Cuba Intense straight onto my skin. Uhm – no. Not now, not ever.




Sandra´s son joined us along the way, having finished kindergarten for the day, We lunched together. French fries. Nothing better than lunch with a kid. We met back up with Birgit late afternoon and Tara was whisked off in preparation for the two of them to leave for London early the next morning. Could a day have been more perfect?



I had an uneventful trip back home on the train, and spend a good deal of it chatting with Vanessa from Bonkers About Perfume. I will be meeting up with her in Germany next month so stay tuned APJ.

Viennese Bussis

27 comments on “Tara Smith of Olfactoria´s Travels visits Vienna + Photo Essay

  1. australianperfumejunkies says:

    Hey Val, I love this post. Thanks for inviting us along on Tara’s tour. I feel like I was a part of it too now. You girls, I love you all.
    Portia xx

    • cookie queen says:

      We talked about you. All good. B mentioned the fact that we are kind of opposites, you and me. You try most things, expect to love them, and often do. I don’t. What a team we are! Bussis xxxxx

  2. Tara says:

    Thanks so much for this great write-up of our fab day together, Val. It was so good to see you and on home turf too!

    Is it possible to be homesick for a place you’re not from?!


    • cookie queen says:

      Hi Tara! Oh yes, it is absolutely possible to be homesick. Writing it up couldn´t really do it justice though!!! Hugs. xxxxx

  3. Sandra says:

    Thanks Val for the great write up! It was a great day and I will treasure the memories. Sean had a blast meeting Tara and looks forward to seeing ‘the girls’ again. Xo

    • cookie queen says:

      I hope it is sooner rather than later that we meet up again! It was so much fun huh? Great memories. xxxxxx

  4. Azar says:

    So many gorgeous smiles! What a wonderful day with friends. If Brad saw your post this morning I know he will be craving the Mozartkugeln for the rest of the day.
    Azar xx

  5. Vanessa says:

    Oh, oh, oh, I did so enjoy this account of the latest – and grandest yet! – grand Central European fumie hook up. That bloke on the train’s ‘relaxed posture’ was a particular highlight, adding even more Kugel to the mix, hehe. 😉 Is it my phone, or are some of the photos upside down – possibly in an Antipodean twist?

    Can’t wait to see you in 4 weeks!!

    • cookie queen says:

      Hi V. I titled this post Man-Spreading, Mozart Balls and a Perfumista Breakfast Party.
      It didn´t get past the censors. The pictures are upside down and sideways on my phone too. Fine on the desk-top though. Yes! 4 weeks. xxxxxx

  6. It’s so lovely!! Sounds like you all had a great day out. 🙂 I could do with a girly day! I’m so looking forward to reading about your meet up with Vanessa!
    Thinkingmagpie recently posted…Tea Anyone? : Oolang Infini, Osmanthe Yunnan & Infusion de TubereuseMy Profile

    • cookie queen says:

      Hi TM! Girly days are always good, and most of them do´t get them often enough. I can’t believe I get to see both Tara and Vanessa here on mainland Europe. Hugs my dear. Nice to see you. xxxxx

  7. poodle says:

    It looks like you had a fun day. Fumes, friends, and food. It’s hard to go wrong with that combination. Reading about it made for a nice break from house cleaning. But now the dust beckons…

    • cookie queen says:

      Morning Poodle. I hope you have planned New York into your September week. I need to contact D and see if she has time. Then we can do the FFF thing. Really, you dust? I collect mine. Hugs xxxxx

  8. Undina says:

    I’m disappointed: not enough pictures, not enough details about food and drinks and definitely not enough information about perfume shops you visited! ;-P
    (ok, ok, I’m just being jealous 🙂 ).
    Undina recently posted…Entertaining Statistics: February 2015My Profile

    • cookie queen says:

      I am so sorry Undina! Food was pretty much what I said. We did squeeze in some breaded mushrooms and a matcha latte (not together) and a greek salad. But that was it. We visited four perfume shops altogether, but didn´t stay long in any of them. There wasn´t anything calling our names. Sad but true. The photo of Sandra was taken in a new store that actually opened on the day that we were in Vienna but I can’t remember then name of it. Was very nice. Phaedon and ELDO and a few others. But again – we are familiar with most of them. So there you go. Yes – it was awesome fun, but mostly it was fin talking and being together. You need to visit!! See you in September. Big hug. xxxxx

  9. Tiffanie says:

    Ohhhhh, thank you for sharing your adventure. It has been about 20 years since I was able to travel with friends to Vienna and points west in Europe. It is great to see that those cobblestone streets are still just as charming. Those were the days!

    • cookie queen says:

      Hiya Tiffanie! Nice to have you drop by. Vienna is very charming, you are right. Especially the old city. I don´t expect much has changed in 20 years, apart from the names of some of the stores! Perhaps you need to plan a trip? Let me know!! xxxx

  10. Looks like a great time was had. I love the paving stones in one of the pics too.
    meganinstmaxime recently posted…Game of Thrones : New Trailer for Season 5 : The DragonsMy Profile

    • cookie queen says:

      Hi Megan! Those paving stones/cobbled stones you are talking about – they are from the 12th century. There is a small bronze plaque embedded in the pavement acknowledging it. They saved them Absolutely brilliant. It was the first time that I had seen them..
      See you SOOOOOOOOOOOOON!!!!! xxx

  11. Anka says:

    What a lively post, Val!
    (And like Vanessa, I was particularly amused by the picture of the guy sitting opposite of you, hiding his b…’s).
    It’s interesting that in Germany you can’t buy the original Mozart-Kugeln (the blue and silver ones) but only the Reber ones (black, red and golden – quite like our contry’s flag and you can even buy them at Aldi).

    • cookie queen says:

      Hello Anka! I would hazard a guess at the Mozart balls and say because they are handmade they don´t make millions of them. I will ask next time I am there. Mozart balls are fascinating. Indeed I might do a whole post all about them. I knooooow – the guy opposite me? I had to laugh. It was especially amusing pretending to text whilst actually taking a picture. We had all better beware! I would however NEVER take picture of someone’s face. Hugs. xxxxxx

  12. Asali says:

    i agree with Undina and Vanessa. Tut tut the kugel outlook on things ( what a jerk), but of all else; We Want More 🙂 and envy you for spending so much quality perfumista time together. Misia is great btw, especially if one like Iris, in a suedey Guerlain/ chanel crossover style.

  13. cookie queen says:

    Hi Asali! I am laughing here. It´s just fine. I don´t care how the guys sits, but it was rather crowded. I am laughing as I write this! I love iris and leather and suede and now I cannot wait to try it . Thanks for the description, my mouth is watering. Lots of love, Val. xxx

  14. TinaG says:

    Yay! Sounds like you guys had a fab time… 🙂 thanks for the report & pics Val, it’s lovely to be able to vicariously ‘join’ these meet ups. Very fun.

    xx Tina G

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