Titillating food aromas: what turns you on (and off)?

The beautiful scent of a pizzeria… I should write a poem about that.

I like strawberry tarts being baked. And chicken broth simmering. Anything pickled or fermented smells delicious to me.

Dislikes, I have many, chief among them are raw poultry (how do restaurants manage to permeate an entire space with raw chicken smell?)

I also detest the smell of frying onions, garlic, and bacon. Any deep fryer smell. Cofffee being brewed, although I don’t mind it being ground.

I love the scent of shellfish cooked with wine and herbs, maybe saffron.

And if we are to be coworkers, do not not ever make microwave popcorn or heat Indian food in the microwave. Thank you. :wink:

That’s a good one! I love that smell, and I don’t even drink beer.

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What happens with Indian food in the Microwave? This is a new one for me. Fish in the microwave was always the one I’ve heard.

Personally, I don’t eat them. Mom lives with me, so on St. Patty’s day I took her to the local pub for her corned beef and cabbage fix. When she wants to make her cabbage soup, she does so when I’m not home. I magnanimously do allow her to steam or roast brussels sprouts :cold_sweat:

A bit OT, but this comment reminds me . . . When I was in high school (many moons ago) friends and I worked in a local pizzeria in Northeast Philadelphia. The pizza kitchen was manned by the guys; the girls worked the grill (mostly cheesesteaks and the deep-fryer) and the hoagie board (heavy on olive oil and onions). This was the early-80’s days of polyester uniforms and the worst part of the job was that we left reeking of oil and onions. Even if we worked until closing (midnight) and had school the next morning, we couldn’t wait to get home and shower.

Never failed: one or more guys would try to pick us up as we waited for the bus. Polyester? Sweaty? Reeking of onions and grease? We had a better success rate than on evenings we were dressed up to go out (i.e., showered, cool 80’s clothes and hair). So apparently the grease aversion isn’t universal :confounded:


homemade chicken soup, chocolate chip cookies baking, roasted garlic, fresh basil, fresh rosemary, roasted peanuts, anything bbq’d, anything citrus.

Honestly the only thing that comes to mind is sour milk and rancid oil…which no one would eat.

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Funny Dan I just had my first experience with rancid oil and boy was it bad!!

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I just cleaned up 2 gallons of milk that had been left in a non-working fridge for probably several weeks. Not pleasant either!

Gotta agree with fryer oil, ketchup, and roasted broccoli/brussels sprouts as turn-offs. I also hate the smell of beef bones roasting, especially in the early stages when they’re all steamy. Yuck. Veal stock, too. Chicken when its brown and crispy on the other hand … :yum:

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Ketchup? That must be hard to avoid at times.

Turn on - garlic, onions sauteeing, fresh basil, bread baking - so many. Off - microwaved popcorn or actually any of those microwaveable foods - that smell kills me!

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Kim, that’s why I used the term ‘Titillating’ in the headline to this post…


I also eat at them, some are better than others and if any locals want suggestions let me know.


I love that word .:lips:

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Love: smell of cookies baking, bread (not Subway) movie popcorn, pizzerias

Hate: salmon broiling, deep fryer smell on clothing and in the hallways of condos. The smell of curry coming from anywhere other than a dish sitting in front of me.

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On: Bacon frying, freshly brewed coffee, roast chicken.

Off: Overdone Brussel sprouts.

Red Bull, especially on the early 6am train to work- all the builders who caught the early train seemed to be cracking open a can. Very sweet and cloying especially at that time in the morning.

I don’t mind durian unless, unless someone has cut some and left it in the shared fridge in the guesthouse. Grrr.

Soul mate.

Not so much.


Love the aroma of vanilla.

Hate the small of cooking vinegar.

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Ohhhh, I completely forgot this one! :hearts: This is the only scent I wear (whenever I wear one), and it’s the only scent in the hand cream I use. And, of course, it’s amazing in baked goods.


I have to agree with many of the posters here, except for the aroma of brussels sprouts. I like them, and I do not mind the aroma.
I have to add to the plus column: the enveloping smell of an ‘everything bagel’ lightly toasting…
Prepared a big pot of chili on Sunday and that was not bad either.


That, too! :heart_eyes:

“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold