Pictured: Babyface, a wrestler-turned-street vendor. Photographed by Susana Laborde and featured in Swallow Magazine
As editor of an online publication, I probably spend 70% of my time on the internet. Still, there are few leisure activities that make me happier than thumbing through a stack of magazines. While the digital world has definitely allowed for awesome new multi-sensory content experiences – (you can read an article about a musician while streaming their music and watching embedded GIFS and videos of them. All at the same time.) – there is one area where print still has the internet beat: smell.
There’s nothing like the smell of the crisp pages of a book fresh off the presses, or the musty pages of an old tome. Award-winning food publication Swallow Magazine understood this simple pleasure and decided to take it to the next level; for their latest issue on Mexico City, they created 20 scratch-and-sniff stickers that contain the smells of different Mexico City neighborhoods and foods.
Scratch and sniff might make you think of elementary school -but this was no childish endeavor. To create the complex scents, Swallow Magazine enlisted fragrance experts and also worked with a team in Singapore (where the magazine is printed) in order to reproduce the smells en masse. The end result is a collection of smells (some decidedly unpleasant) that give readers an authentic experience of Mexico City they’d never get otherwise – short of actually traveling there.
If you’re a foodie, be sure to check this one out – the issue explores the high-low spectrum of Mexico City’s food scene, from high-end chefs to the ubiquitous street food. The magazine will cost $30 and will be available at some newsstands in mid-April. Otherwise, it can be ordered through swallowmagazine.com.