Owner Kevin Lemel, whose compellingly florid and eccentric personality is the driving force behind RAW Candles, practices aromatherapy with the learned nose of a sommelier. His scent flavors include a hilariously titled “Blue Steel,” conjuring images of Zoolander in full, shirtless day-spa repose. Ingredients including Bergamot that “punches out a crisp, sophisticated cool” and musks and spices that “add even more muscle. This is definitely Unisexy.” There’s also a “Caffeinated” candle for students to study all night to during finals (may be combined with the “Twisted Tobacco”), and a “Roll in the Hay” made from—yes—“fresh cut hay.” Candles have never been this fun.
Best of Chicago 2014