Hi Posse! En Passant turns 21 this year, so it can finally have a drink in the USA! With the Northern Hemisphere heading to spring I thought we might like to have a look at one of the most beautiful spring fragrances ever released (in my book anyway). Early on in my perfumista-hood it was so revered. There were long, overblown blog posts extolling its virtues. I would read them all with great relish and dream of trying this masterpiece.
Discovering The Posh Peasant (sadly closed now) changed my life. Suddenly I could order a bunch of decants of the things I was reading about, Could spend time testing and living the fragrances without the heavy fragrant melange of department stores air. It was very liberating BUT what ended up happening was I’d spritz three or four fragrances up each arm and end up with exactly the same dilemma. Bigger, richer perfumes would take my breath away. Consequently though, the softer, less insistent gems would go unnoticed or be deemed too boring. GAH! How much I missed.
Fortunately you can still get amazing decants from Surrender To Chance. Yes, they’re my friends, still the best decant crew I know of.
For clarity, my travel is a few years old. I bought it on holiday in Vienna while hanging out with Birgit & Sandra from Olfactoria’s Travels (also sadly ended) at the end of a snow piled winter. I was directed to smell it first thing that day, so my nose was clear. REVELATION!
Here’s Patty’s 2006 En Passant take too.
En Passant by Frederic Malle 2000
Parfumo gives these featured accords:
Lilac, Cucumber, Orange leaf, Rice, Wheat
How does En Passant smell? Inky darkness opens then suddenly it’s ALL about lilacs. You’ve put your head right into a dew speckled lilac inflorescence as the morning begins. You are enveloped in a pure, calm, floral wonderland that makes everything in your life fade to insignificance. This utter perfection lasts only a couple of minutes but it is a gloriously peaceful experience.
The heart becomes a little more grassy/leafy and behind it is the smell of cooking rice steam. It’s as if you are in the kitchen garden and can smell both.
As we move towards dry down the rice has become more bread-y. Like a doughy iris yet i9nfinitely more lovely because the dewy melon and remembered hints of iris give it breadth.
Not a showstopper. En Passant is a quiet beauty. I have to lift my arm to my nose to get these nuances. As a perfume in village it is much less pronounced. A beautiful soft wash. So elegant and low key.
Will you be wearing En Passant this spring?