L’Astre by Le Galion (Ava Gardner’s bespoke scent)

Hi there Posse, I bought L’Astre by Le Galion at retail from Fragrances and Art in 2023 as a reward for getting September (I think) New Idea 2023 done right. The thing is though, we were travelling so much last year that every time I was home my time was spent playing catch up with friends, blogs, the businesses, our apartment and the investments. So, though I did buy a few rewards they have sat here awaiting their moment.

Also, while travelling in December we were able to catch up with Nicolas and his partner Enno for dinner at our favourite Korean in Paris, Séoul Opéra. We also had our buddies Rocco and Vera with us. It was such a good night, so much food and booze consumed. All our catching up stories and many reminiscences. The gents are as delightful, interesting, refined and beautiful as their perfumes. They are such excellent raconteurs too. I know, fan girling like crazy but believe me, they are worthy. They also gave me a swag of goodies from Le Galion and Headspace (stay tuned, I have the sample set and we can look at them in Feb)
Sadly Neela was just not up to a night out with us rowdy lot and we missed her and Tony dearly. They were talked of with love.

L’Astre by Le Galion 2023

L'Astre by Le Galion (Ava Gardner's bespoke scent)

Le Galion offers a new pyramid:
Aromatic spicy accord: Grilled sweet fennel / Cardamom India / Red ginger Laos / Wild thyme Spain
Symphonic floral accord: Jasmine absolute “vintage” / Ylang Ylang Comoros / Tuberose concrete India / Orange blossom Morocco
Ambery balsamic accord : Amber / Suede / Tolu balsma Honduras / Vanilla bean Madagascar

From Le Galion:  Ambassador and face of Sortilèg during the 1950s, Ava Gardner asked Le Galion to compose a tailor-made fragrance just for her. The perfumer, valuing distinction and femininity, obliged and the custom Ava Gardner perfume would become L’Astre.
Le Galion is now launching L’Astre, a contemporary rewrite of a formula that has remained private for decades. Working in collaboration with the Estate of Ava Gardner and her heirs who offer access to their archives, L’Astre captures and symbolizes the brilliance of these two great names of the 20th century, both of whose influence continues today.

L'Astre by Le Galion (Ava Gardner's bespoke scent) lastre L'Astre

Firstly, the new bottle is beautiful. Fits in the hand well, is hefty and feels very luxurious. The spritzer is fine and abundant. Like walking through the mister at a fancy restaurant.

How does L’Astre smell? The opening is a smooth green spice, herbaceous and resinous. Smooth is the operative word here. Not sure what I was expecting but L’Astre definitely has that Le Galion blending perfection, second to none. Like cool glass on your cheek and eye rollingly, moaningly gorgeous..

As L’Astre heads into the heart it becomes much more white floral but never crosses into BWF territory. This is not a monster but a refined beauty. I think the herbal spiciness keeps it in check. It does lean a little tropical and though there is no fruit noted my nose tells me otherwise. I want to say banana peel and tinned peaches, whatever it is the extra creates an interesting counterpoint. It adds to the excellent segue towards dry down. The parts are not separate though, each is an unfolding like a continuation of the previous but adding detail and dappled shade. After hours I feel like we really reach dry down. It’s a subtle amber and the vanilla isn’t what you’d expect from modern perfumery. A darker aspect of the bean. Dark but still super smooth and given a sheen by the resinous balsam.

Everything that Ava Gardner was is captured so perfectly in this modern interpretation of L’Astre. Totally unisex. Longevity is excellent, sillage and projection are moderate +.

What did the blogs used to say? RUN, don’t walk, to wherever you can try this unbelievable beauty. I’m pretty sure you will swoon hard.

Le Galion has 10ml 35
Fragrances and Art do 1ml spray samples

Last year I wrote about Le Galion Vetyver

Are you a Le Galion or Ava Gardner fan? Does L’Astre sound good to you?
Portia xx

  • carole says:

    This sounds like an amazing fragrance, Portia, and I remember you wrote lovingly about the Le Gallion line. I’d try this, and thank you for taking us on a trip with you-I’ve never had the chance to travel much so any kind of travel sounds exotic to me.

    I love that AG loved scents-I remember Johanna Lumley was on a movie with her, and said AG smelt so fabulous-like tuberose. Said AG liked to be called Big A lol.

  • Diana says:

    I’d love to try this but unfortunately, after having Covid three times, my sense of smell never fully returned. I can no longer detect the nuances in most perfumes and get olfactory fatigue quite easily. Sad for someone who used to order tons of samples pre-Covid, based on what I read here. I still like to review the posts, with the hope that one day my nose might start working again. Also, like Musette, I absolutely LOVE reading the tidbits about your life, Portia. It seems so glamorous compared to my homebody/9-5-er life!

  • AnnieA says:

    At long last, a celebrity scent I am eager to try! Le Gallion bottles are getting even more elegant.

    • Portia says:

      AH! I’d not even made the connection AnnieA, it really IS a Celebuscent! But this is such a fine lineage.
      Yeah, next level. Wait till you hold the new bottle, then we will talk. It feels so good in my hand.
      Portia xx

  • Musette says:

    Ava Gardner’s legendary beauty! Swoooon!

    This sounds amazing! More ‘female’ than ‘feminine’ to me but that’s probably because I’m used to equating BWF with ‘femininity’

    Can’t wait to try this!

    And… I love reading about your life – you really do LIVE!!!


    • Portia says:

      I think this will definitely blow your skirt.

      HA! We aren’t on earth long enough to let life slide by Musette. I’m also making sure to live for all the friends and family that didn’t make it to here.
      Portia xx

  • Jennifer S says:

    Yes that bottle caught my eye from the first. It’s a beauty. The banana peel/peaches are giving me pause…but not enough to keep me from sampling it!

  • Margeaux says:

    Ooooohhh I’d love to try this when I come visit next time pretty please??!! I named Ava after Ms Gardner ??

  • Kathleen says:

    I have been coveting this perfume after reading about it. I am a Le Galion fan especially Sortilege. Thank you for the review, no coveting even more! xoxo

    • Portia says:

      Heya Kathleen,
      Le Galion are so weirdly untacked about. I think they are one of the best houses available today, in so many ways. The new bottles are gorgeously gorgeous too
      Portia x

  • Dina C. says:

    This sounds like a beauty, Portia. Thanks for the introduction!

  • March says:

    Oh, this sounds FANTASTIC. Absolutely delicious! Also like something I would love. I think Ava was gorgeous and this sounds like a fragrance worthy of her. Thanks for telling us about it!

  • Eldarwen22 says:

    I do think that this is worth trying. I can be a real sucker for perfumes that are more historical.

  • cinnamon says:

    What a great back story and a wonderful review. That notes list is quite intriguing. Plus, ‘banana peel and tinned peaches’ made me think of the sadly gone Amaranthine. This sounds like I need to try it.

  • Tom says:

    I’m a big fan of Ms. Gardner, from her 40’s Kitty Collins heyday to her witty turn on “Knots Landing” in the 80’s. I’m going to have to try this one..

  • Michelle says:

    I couldn’t resist…. Ordered a decent and cannot wait to try it. Thank you for sharing your travels, I could imagine everything clearly!