Parfume d’Empire’s three new scents hit with varying degrees of accuracy on my personal likes, but I found all three either interesting or just beautiful. The one thing I can say for this line, I may not always like what they put out for me personally, but I always admire what they are doing, including, as March termed it, Rasputin’s armpit masquerading under the name of Ambre Russe.
Equistrius has notes of orris, violet, rice powder, chocolate, ambrette, sandalwood, vetiver, and grey amber. This is a cross between Serge Lutens Iris Silver Mist and something more gourmandy, which on paper sounds, well, pretty cruddy, but in practice is pretty nifty. It starts out very rooty, but the more gourmand notes of rice powder, chocolate and ambrette quickly chime in and soften it right up, and it almost folds over into more of a gourmand, but give it another few minutes, and it sharpens a bit, which is a good thing. I could have liked it fine as an iris gourmand, but I like it better with that bit of sharpness. This is my personal favorite of the three scents, but I do not get how it is in any way, shape or form related to a horse. Anyone? But it’s very beautiful and very wearable.
Lee liked Fougere Bengale a lot, it was his personal favorite of the three. Notes of Lavender, tarragon, patchouli, geranium, tobacco, tonka beans, vanilla. There is nothing in this perfume that is uninteresting. From the open with a blast of lavender and tarragon, buoyed up by patch to a meandering drydown into almost gourmand territory, with what smells almost like immortelle, pulling back and taking a trip to the hay barn or the tobacco farm and every now and then almost flirts into Borneo territory. Agree with Lee, this is the most interesting of the three. I’ve tried it on three different days, and I’ve yet to really define it in any meaningful way or classify it absolutely. Those who love the more stout Ambre Russe and Cuir Ottoman from PdE should find great happiness here. Those who are horrified at how outre AR and CO may recoil from this one. I’m sitting in the middle on it. It’s not one I’d wear every day, but it is one I very much enjoy wearing because it changes many times throughout the day.
Osmanthus Interdite has notes of Chinese tea, osmanthus, rose, jasmine, musk. This is just really pretty, and that sounds almost like an insult when I think there are far too few really pretty perfumes out there that aren’t a horrible cliche. What’s not to love? Bright, fresh and pretty with just enough musk in the base to stay out of “too pretty” territory and keep it warmed up and a little sultry. I expect to be reaching for this one with regularity, it is easy to wear and very enjoyable.
Depending on your personal taste, there’s really something in each of these three for everyone. Well-crafted and interesting, despite my early and still horrified sniffs of Ambre Russe, I’ve grown to appreciate this line a lot.
Now for Patty’s horribly overpriced ridiculous buy of the week — maybe the month! It’s a candle, of course. Now, I defy you to read this description and not be thinking… wow, that sounds great, I should have one!
“The top note is a wonderful combination of pink grapefruit, orange blossom and mandarin flower. The heart of this fragrance is a lush floral bouquet of fig, freesia, tuberose and white roses. This fragrance ends with a flourish with notes that are a unique mix of cedarwood, sandalwood, incense, musk and amber. Roma is a fragrance that is steeped in romantic and grand traditions but one that is also bold, modern and fresh.”
Yum! But I’m going to take the plunge and sample it so you don’t have to! It’s a Santuario di Bellezza Roma Modern Candle for … are you ready — $120. I know, right?! But it’s in a double blown 24% leaded crystal jar. Yeah, yeah, I know, but someone has to see if it’s any good, though I doubt anything can actually be worth that price tag. Y’all owe me. Will report back next week.