It’s often said that you can tell a lot about a restaurant by the state of its bathrooms. But one chef is taking attention to detail in this respect to the next level, by producing his own soap that compliments the food being served.
Adam Aamann, who owns several restaurants in Copenhagen where he is famous for making smørrebrød, the traditional Danish open sandwich, cool again, while also a regular on Danish TV and a published author, started making his own soaps last year, the idea being that the diner returns from the bathroom smelling of the herbs used in the kitchen. “My soaps are made using the fragrance universe I love in my kitchen - herbs, citrus fruits and precious wood sorts,” he says.
Above left to right: Adam Aamann in his garden; Smørrebrød with marinated herring with lemon, kohlrabi and cheese (photos: Columbus Leth)
Aamann handmakes the soaps in his kitchen at home, using all organic and sustainable ingredients, including essential oils from his herb garden. Almond oil gives the soap moisturising properties. “I created the soaps as a consequence of my irritation with the desiccating soaps often found in professional kitchens, where one - after all - washes one’s hands quite frequently,” he says.
So far, two soaps – one mixing orange, lemon, rosemary and bergamot; and another thyme, lemon, ceder and bergamot – can be found at Aamann’s 1921, the chef’s newest restaurant, which opened in August 2017. Though he has no plans to start selling them, he will be experimenting with new recipes and increasing production so he has enough to fill all his restaurants. They will always remain complimentary to the food: “They must tell a story of good ingredients,” he says.