New Perfume Review Anya’s Garden Randolph Parry Cologne 1859- Alpha Cologne

It has been awhile since I have received samples from natural perfumer Anya McCoy. A few weeks ago that was rectified with two new creations from Ms. McCoy. There is nobody working in the natural perfume field from whom I look forward more to seeing what she has created. She is so busy watching over the Natural Perfumers Guild that I think she doesn’t take enough time to remind us of how talented she is. Both of these new fragrances I received from her show her dedication to the history and the future of natural perfumery. I am going to review each of the new perfumes today and tomorrow.

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Anya McCoy

For today I guess calling the Randolph Parry Cologne 1859 “new” is a bit of a misnomer. Ms. McCoy was contacted by the President of the New Hope (PA) Historical Society, Dr. Claire Shaw. Dr. Shaw had come across a recipe for a cologne when searching through the books at the Parry Mansion. She contacted Ms. McCoy to see if she could help decipher the recipe and perhaps recreate it. Ms. McCoy had written to me about this earlier in the process and to say I was excited to see how this would turn out is an understatement. You just have to look at the name of the blog to know how fascinated I would be in smelling a fresh version of an original cologne formulation.

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As you can see in the page reproduced above from Ms. McCoy’s website the recipe has all of the classic ingredients of the early colognes. Ms. McCoy looked to those early colognes, namely Eau de Hongrie and 4711 for inspiration. She also would remark that the formula looks similar to the well-known Florida Water to those of us who have lived in South Florida. What that all means is the more herbal components are thrust forward with the lavender while the citrus takes a bit of a back seat. The one unique ingredient from the 1859 recipe that was going to be very difficult to source and use was “musk tincture”. Real musk from the glands of musk deer is tightly regulated in 2015 and she would have to go through Bruce Bolmes of SMK Fragrance who is the only licensed importer in the US. Mr. Bolmes enthusiastically signed on to the project and this allowed Ms. McCoy to be faithful to the last drop in her recreation.

Randolph Parry Cologne opens with that fresh lemon swoosh. Lavender arrives very rapidly and it provides a spindle for the herbal and spicy components to wind themselves around. Rosemary which is the classic herbal component is present. What sets Randolph Parry Cologne apart is the very prominent cinnamon and clove notes. They settle in with the rosemary and lavender to provide a slightly darker shade of cologne than you might think. Rose and neroli provide a light floral counterpoint and it is especially as the florals gain some traction that I am reminded strongly of Florida Water. The arrival of the musk tincture is what truly sets this apart. The real animalic muskiness provides an entirely unique foundation for a cologne. It has a complexity to it that you can only get from a real musk. As it provides depth and texture to the more traditional cologne components it makes this feel contemporary.

Randolph Parry Cologne has 6-8 hour longevity and moderate sillage.

You might think following an old recipe would be child’s play but I think this was quite the opposite. Ms. McCoy had to use every bit of skill and experience she has to make this recreation sing with the correct harmony. In lesser hands they would’ve just slammed the ingredients together into a muddled mess. Ms. McCoy turns it into living history not only of perfumery but a way of life. If you love cologne like I do you must try this.

Disclosure: This review was based on a sample provided by Anya’s Garden.

Mark Behnke

Editor’s Note: If you want to know more about the process and the history behind Ms. McCoy’s process visit this link for her blog post all about it.

New Perfume Review Diptyque Florabellio- Island Summer Morning

Through most of the 1980’s I participated in a summer rental on Shelter Island, NY. I was often able to get out to the house before the rest of the roommates and I really enjoyed my Friday mornings. I used to fill a thermos with coffee and bicycle through the fog to this sandy hillock. From there I could watch the ospreys hunt for fish and early in the summer to feed the baby ospreys in the nests. If you had asked me a couple months ago whether there was a scent to that experience I would’ve scoffed at the idea. That is until I received my sample of Diptyque Florabellio.

Florabellio is described as an “olfactory landscape” on the website. This is a very interesting landscape combining three distinct styles of fragrances through the three phases. Perfumer Fabrice Pellegrin has fused an aquatic, a fruity floral, and a gourmand into a single perfume. Even when I looked at the notes listed on the press release I expected this to be incongruous at best. What M. Pellegrin has done is to achieve his stated aim of creating a landscape containing focal points which come together to create a whole experience.

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Fabrice Pellegrin

Florabellio opens with the smell of the ocean as carried to you on the breeze. It is light, ozonic, and a touch salty. He takes fennel and lets its herbal nature add a vegetal aspect. This is the smell of sitting on sand dunes surrounded by the grass growing there as the waves crash in the distance. The heart is a wonderfully delicate interpretation of fruity floral as if done in water colors. My biggest quarrel with fruity floral as a genre is it has no subtlety. In the heart of Florabellio M. Pellegrin is using the lightest hand as he combines apple blossom and osmanthus. The apricot and leather beauty of osmanthus is made diaphanous and the apple blossom blows through that opacity with a delicate sigh. If this was all there was to Florabellio it would have been enough. I was worried that the listed notes of coffee and sesame were going to make a change for the worse. With a little more presence than the florals in the heart M. Pellegrin brings the aroma of freshly-brewed coffee forward. The coffee note here captures both the bitterness and the richness of good coffee. The sesame gives it a smoky aspect.  

Florabellio has 14-16 hour longevity and average sillage.

I feel as if M. Pellegrin has created an olfactory painting of my summer mornings thirty years ago. Every day I wore Florabellio it reminded me strongly of that time. Florabellio can be perhaps too much of a good thing as it does tend to have so much going on some might find it distracting instead of enjoyable. I admire the decision to go for the design that Florabellio exhibits; it sets it apart in a good way.

Disclosure: This review was based on a sample provided by Diptyque.

Mark Behnke

New Perfume Review Nishane Istanbul Afrika Olifant- The Elephant in the Room

As I’ve explained previously when I get these huge collections from a new brand it has a tendency to just wear me out. One drawback it has is I put off trying all of them because there are just too many. For the new brand Nishane Istanbul I received a set of ten samples from Twisted Lily. As I’ve hit one of the doldrums on the perfume calendar it was time to give them a try. Of the ten I was sent there are two which really stood out and I will review both of them over the next couple of weeks.

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Mert Guzel and Murat Katran

Nishane was founded in September 2012 by Mert Guzel and Murat Katran. Working with perfumer Jorge Lee they have created a collection of sixteen perfumes in less than three years. Many of the fragrances show glimmers of inspiration but they never came together completely for me. The one which stood out as the most unique in the ten I tried was Afrika-Olifant.

It caught my attention because it is almost entirely made up of notes which are usually found as basenotes. As a result it has a flattened development because everything tends to show up quickly. That kind of congestion actually works in Afrika-Olifant’s favor as it made me feel like I was constantly turning in a circle looking for different parts of the perfume.

Jorge Lee

Jorge Lee

The first notes I detected were a mix of incense and amber. The incense has that silvery edge fine incense provides to perfumes. M. Lee then uses myrrh to attenuate that sharpness while retaining the resinous quality. The next set of notes are a trio of animalic ingredients; civet, castoreum, and leather. These are superimposed on top of the resinous top accord. This now makes for an exotic animalic accord as the resins swirl throughout the very feral notes in the heart. Just as you might be getting your bearings a cocktail of four synthetic musks provide a scintillating counterpoint to the naturally animalic. This is where I fell for Afrika-Olifant. The blend of the synthetic musks have a futuristic aspect to them that seems to turn the animalic heart accord into something cyborg-like. As I mentioned none of the notes I have mentioned really recede at all and many hours of wearing Afrika-Olifant is spent with everything on display.

Afrika-Olifant has overnight longevity and average sillage.

The juxtaposition of the real animalic with the synthetic is what makes Afrika-Olifant stand out within the Nishane Istanbul line. It is the only one of the ten I tried to truly take a risk and it has paid off with one of my favorites of the line. Sometimes you just have to confront the elephant in the room which tells you to play it safe. Then you have the freedom to create a perfume like Afrika-Olifant.

Disclosure: This review was based on a sample provided by Twisted Lily.

Mark Behnke

New Perfume Review Rania J. Ambre Loup- Spice Market Memories

As I get to the last couple weeks of July the amount of new perfumes I receive slows to a trickle. The deluge of new fall perfumes is just around the corner but I always have a couple weeks which allow me to go back and write about perfumes that keep getting bumped down the priority list. One of those brands is called Rania J.

Rania J.is unsurprisingly the name of the owner and perfumer Rania Jouaneh. She released her first three perfumes in 2012 and has followed up with three other releases. I received all six samples back in the spring. I liked most of them and they have been on “to review” list since then. Now that I have finally had some time there is one which really rose to the top, Ambre Loup.

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Rania Jouaneh

Mme Jouaneh grew up in the Middle East and Africa. She mentions on her website that the aromas of “the spice markets, souks and African bazaars’ made up the scent track of her childhood. Amber Loup is the perfume in the collection which comes closest to that. I am one who likes those fragrances which try to capture this milieu. Mme Jouaneh does a great job at re-creating the smells of her youth in Ambre Loup.

If you’ve ever been to a spice market there is a heady smell where you experience all of the spices in the most wondrous mélange ever. Mme Jouaneh recreates that with the top notes of Ambre Loup. She creates a veritable cloud of spices focused mainly on clove. I feel like I detect traces of at least fivev or six others over the first hour of wearing this. She captures the warmth under the canopies with a heart trio of labdanum, peru balsam, and vanilla. The spices persist into the heart so the picture becomes a little more claustrophobic as there are a lot of powerful notes vying for my attention. Mme Jouaneh keeps the fractious bunch under control creating a really complex accord in the heart. The base almost seems disappointingly straightforward as cedar, guaiac, and a pinch of oud frame this with strong woods.

Ambre Loup has 16-18 hour longevity and above average sillage.

I think Mme Jouaneh has gotten off to a positive start with all of her initial releases. I would encourage readers to sample the line I think she has shown the ability over all six to create the specific mood she was going for. For Ambre Loup that is a day in the spice market.

Disclosure: This review was based on samples provided by Rania J.

Mark Behnke

New Perfume Review Nomad Two Worlds Raw Spirit Winter Oak- Simplexity

There are times when the summer is at its hottest that I crave a woody perfume. There are never a shortage of this style of perfumes available to sate my desire. What has been amusing this summer is the woody perfume I have been wearing the most has the word winter in its name.

The fragrance brand Nomad Two Worlds is part of the wider initiative founded by photographer Russell Brand. In 2012 the brand introduced me to the indigenous Australian plant known as fire tree in their firs fragrance; Raw Spirit Fire Tree. Mr. James wants Nomad Two Worlds, through art, to find a wider understanding of marginalized and indigenous peoples all over the world. The ambitious plan is to use fragrance as one of the art forms. The Raw Spirit collection is the sixth of a planned ten perfumes. For this one called Raw Spirit Winter Oak it is meant to illuminate the U.S. Native Americans.

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Harry Fremont

All of the Raw Spirit perfumes have been composed by perfumer Harry Fremont, for Winter Oak he wanted to capture the age and power of the oak while wrapping in the smells of the desert southwest. Winter Oak is, as all of the other Raw Spirit perfumes to date have been, a perfume with simplexity. Always when I wear these perfumes the first time I think they are very straightforward but there is a lilting subtext to all of them that seems to only be apparent to me after I wear them a couple of times.

M. Fremont starts with a spicy green opening of clary sage, geranium, and a very measured amount of pepper. The pepper adds only a modicum of piquancy to the otherwise herbal opening. Clove, olibanum, and mate form the heart notes. The clove presents itself in a more forceful way than the pepper in the top notes. Here the saffron and mate play the supporting roles. Finally in the base we get to that towering oak tree. Oak has a real green character especially when you compare it to cedar. In Winter Oak that green quality is more noticeable because M. Fremont has set your expectations up through the first two phases of development to be attuned towards it. As the oak grows it is supported by even more green from vetiver. After a few hours a very soft suede leather accord rounds out this perfume.

Winter Oak has 10-12 hour longevity and average sillage.

Raw Spirit Winter Oak is donating some of the proceeds to The Chumash Indian Museum in Thousand Oaks, CA.

I have found Winter Oak to be just the right tonic for my need for summer woods even if the name tells me I should be wearing it in a different season.

Disclosure: This review was based on a sample provided by Nomad Two Worlds.

Mark Behnke

New Perfume Review Oscar de la Renta Extraordinary- Per Fumus Populi

Every few months I take a field trip to the mall to do a little research. My method is to find a chair or bench right by where the perfume counter is at in a department store. My local malls offer me multiple opportunities to observe every major chain. What I am looking for is to see what happens when consumers walking through the fragrance department do with the sprayed strip the line representative hands to them. The great majority of them end up in a garbage can as they walk away from the store. Every so often I see the women, or men, tuck the strip away. That always piques my interest. It means that at least on a first impression level the fragrance has made the consumer want to give it a sniff later. Very often these are perfumes that those who like independent and niche perfumes would shun as derivative. When I see a perfume making an impression I want to give it a try and see if I can understand what makes it interesting to the more casual perfume wearer. On my last foray into consumerism the perfume that was not getting thrown into the garbage can was Oscar de la Renta Extraordinary.

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Bruno Jovanovic

Extraordinary was composed by perfumers Bruno Jovanovic and Pascal Gaurin. What is in the bottle is a very straightforward floral oriental. There is truly nothing new to anyone who has lots of fragrances in their collection. It is a simple floral progression into a sweet woody base. Where I think this might be getting a second look by those walking through the fragrance department is the perfumers added a couple of interesting grace notes while also going very sweet in the base for a traditional spring/summer perfume.

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Pascal Gaurin

Extraordinary opens primarily with neroli but there are a couple of interesting underpinnings which keep it from being just neroli. The perfumers use cherry blossom and passionfruit flower to provide subtle fruity facets without really turning it into a fruity floral. I think this is a very smart way of differentiating yourself in the consumer marketplace. Especially in the top notes; as neroli will be easily recognized but those faint fruity qualities? Those are just making the neroli interesting. The heart is a very straight forward peony and rose floral. This is definitely nothing that isn’t in a thousand floral perfumes. The base is where the perfumers decide to also take a slightly different tack. There is a mix of long lasting ambrox and woody synthetics. What is interesting is there is a very healthy dose of vanillin which makes the foundation of Extraordinary almost edge into gourmand territory.

Extraordinary has 6-8 hour longevity and average sillage.

The most surprising thing about Extraordinary is a lack of staying power. With all of the synthetics in the base I expected to have it with me well into the evening if not into the next morning. I don’t have a good explanation for this but I think that might keep Extraordinary from being a runaway hit. Because in the department store world longevity is equated with quality. If it does become a hit I think that the perfumers had a small amount of courage to push some less commercial inspirations into Extraordinary may be the reason it stands out in the glass forest on the department store counter.

Disclosure: This review was based on a carded sample I received at the department store.

Mark Behnke

New Perfume Review Folie a Plusieurs Le Cinema Olfactif Blow-Up- Emotional Ennui

When I was at Esxence I actually met Kaya Sorhaindo for the first time. Kaya had been responsible for the creation of Six Scents Perfumes. I had wondered what he was doing and at a stand just inside the entrance I found the answer. He has started a line of perfume under the brand name Folie a Plusieurs. The first collection is called Le Cinema Olfactif. In this collection he asked perfumer Mark Buxton to interpret a specific moment from five independent films. Each perfume carries a time stamp calling out the isolated moment from each film. My favorite of the debut perfumes was the one based on Michelangelo Antonioni’s 1966 film Blow-Up.

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The specific section of Blow-Up interpreted is where the photographer protagonist is looking at an abstract oil painting done by his neighbor who is living with the woman the photographer desires. It is the three conversations he has with this object of desire which lets us know there is still the need for human connection for a man who appears to use his camera as a barrier. While visiting he stares at one of the paintings as the camera stays focused on him. Mr. Buxton described it as, “The oil painting becomes a metaphor for holding onto a small part that is real from the abstract.”

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Mark Buxton

The perfume Mr. Buxton creates captures that mix of outward ennui as inside you fight for real emotional connection. It opens on a swirl of marijuana smoke and the green of the park. They match quite nicely as they give a sign of pleasures illicit and innocent. The heart is where Blow-Up is really interesting as Mr. Buxton chooses to juxtapose the two art forms on display in the movie, photography and oil painting. He has created a very synthetic accord which captures the dark room and the smell of oil paint. These are both odors which carry an acrid edge to them but underneath there is also a subtle sweetness which Mr. Buxton probably makes more apparent than in reality. The final stages of Blow-Up are made up of polished aged wood. This is wood hidden behind a veneer of polish. It, like the photographer, is looking for a way to get out from underneath the shiny surface.

Blow-Up has 8-10 hour longevity and moderate sillage.

The work done by Mr. Buxton across all five of the Le Cinema Olfactif collection is very good. I will admit my affection for Blow-Up might be because it is also my favorite movie of the initial ones. The very synthetic smelling heart will also not make every perfume lover happy. For me it does capture the mood of the film and I enjoyed it quite a bit. So much so I watched the film again while wearing the perfume one night. I am really looking forward to the coming attractions from Kaya and Mr. Buxton.

Disclosure: This review was based on a sample provided by Folie a Plusiurs at Esxence 2015.

Mark Behnke

New Perfume Review Azzedine Alaia Alaia- Perfumed Silhouettes

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It is rare that I am excited to try a new designer perfume. Yet there are still some designer names which make me sit up and take notice. Azzedine Alaia would be one of those names. Everything he does he does to his own beat. He shuns the Fashion Week traveling circus to show his collections when he is ready to show them. He had dismissed the need for a designer to add extensive accessories collections and perfume to their lines. I never expected there to be an Azzedine Alaia perfume, ever. Then in May I received a press release announcing Alaia, a fragrance. I was so intrigued I went into overdrive to get my hands on some. I received a sample two weeks ago.

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Azzedine Alaia (l.)

M. Alaia is known for his form-fitting designs. He was one of a few designers who put the curve back into women’s clothing. His silhouettes always accentuate the classic hourglass feminine figure. From there what he adds is singular detail which never detracts from that hourglass but gives it new form and function. The perfume which bears his name, signed by perfumer Marie Salamagne, also has that kind of hourglass shape to it as it is most prominent on top and in the base with a lighter floral intermezzo in between.

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Marie Salamagne (Photo Jerome Bonnet)

In a NY Times interview M. Alaia said he wanted Alaia to smell like “the smell of cold water falling on hot chalk.” I take this to mean that moment when cold meets hot capturing the steam rising and the hot wet mineralic aspect. I think Mme Salamagne gets the first part right with a fabulous spicy ozonic top. I don’t know what “hot chalk” smells like in M. Alaia’s world; in this perfume it smells musky. Which is not how I describe the smell of chalk.

Mme Salamagne takes baie rose and adds it to what she describes as an “air accord”. It is a mix of aldehydes and ozonic synthetics. They form a billowing cloud of steam with the baie rose adding in the texture. It is a really enticing beginning. It all blows away on a stiff breeze of freesia and peony, mostly the latter. The florals stick around just long enough to reset your expectations as the base offers a different type of experience altogether. Mme Salamagne adds in some of the more animalic synthetic musks to form something very primal in its nature. If the top was a cloud this is something weightier asking more of the wearer.

Alaia has 8-10 hour longevity and moderate sillage.

As mentioned above there is a signature silhouette to M. Alaia’s fashion. The perfume contains the same silhouette with a similar attention to detail. For someone who didn’t want to make perfume he has produced one of the better designer perfumes out there. It certainly doesn’t smell like the other things on the perfume counter with a designer name on it.

Disclosure: This review was based on a sample I purchased.

Mark Behnke

New Perfume Review Stephane Humbert Lucas Mortal Skin- The Art of Provocation

There is a maxim that art should provoke a reaction. Some artists think provocation equates to confrontation. Some artists will work with materials not thought of as beautiful and somehow find grace within. Other artists will seek to provoke, like a long con, by working their way into your consciousness and refusing to leave. The very best will attempt to do all of this. When it comes to perfume there are very few artists that pull this trifecta off repeatedly. One of them is Stephane Humbert Lucas. His latest release is called Mortal Skin which manages to confront, confound, and compel.

Mortal Skin is not being released under the Stephane Humbert Lucas 777 brand. When speaking with him at Esxence he told me he wanted to distinguish the two lines from each other. Mortal Skin does not feel like a 777 fragrance. It reminds me most of his previous work for Nez a Nez. In those perfumes M. Lucas helped compose olfactory stories layered and nuanced that rewarded repeat wearings with new discoveries. I have found Mortal Skin to have the same effect. I have had a sample since Esxence and it has been one of my favorite perfumes to wear of 2015. One of the reasons for that is I still don’t think I’ve discovered all there is to enjoy and I’ve worn this a lot. In a career of very imaginative creations Mortal Skin might be the best.

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Stephane Humbert Lucas (Photo: Robert Greco)

Mortal Skin is meant to evoke a snake slowly drawing you into its gaze before striking. The top notes are mesmerizing as M. Lucas starts with a black ink accord which is coupled with smoky frankincense. It takes the acrid slightly unpleasant ink smell and by wrapping it in resinous fumes transforms it from unpleasant into an incense accord which smells like few others. The ink accentuates those hard metallic edges found in fine frankincense. The smoke floats over it all. The frankincense and ink give way to a breeze of cardamom which carries into the heart. Myrrh provides resinous warmth to contrast the chill of iris. Opoponax and davana provide depth and texture. This all leads to a base which speaks of the decay of death and the fragility of life. A woody triptych of birch, sandalwood, and cedar provide a strong framework within which M. Lucas adds in ambergris and labdanum. This is the smell of the ocean and the soaring sentinel trees. It is joined by civet and musk in high concentration so that the ambergris and labdanum are struggling at all times to be noticed over the animalic decay. This final stage is what is so compelling to me. There are times life wins as the woods and ambergris manage to make themselves more apparent. There are days entropy wins and the civet and musk rise up to remind me everything falls apart.

Mortal Skin has 14-16 hour longevity and average sillage.

I imagine it is apparent that Mortal Skin is one of my favorite perfumes of 2015. I would say it is the most artistic perfume M. Lucas has ever released. This is not the kind of perfume meant to wear easily while running errands. This is a perfume to wear with a friend with whom you want to have a meaningful encounter. The answer to “What are you wearing?” might lead to some interesting places. If you are a fan of the 777 perfumes allow M. Lucas to take you to a different mind space I think you’ll enjoy the new direction. I know it is a place I plan on returning to often because it is at its most basic, great olfactory art.

Disclosure: this review was based on a sample I received at Esxence 2015.

Mark Behnke

Header photo by Robert Greco via Sagma Corp. Facebook Page.

New Perfume Review Apoteker Tepe The Peradam- In Search of…..

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When I was in college we would gather around the television to watch a cheesy series called In Search of…. It was hosted by Leonard Nimoy and would delve into all things paranormal and extraterrestrial. Think of it as the forefather of most of the content on the History Channel these days. When it comes to perfume I am In Search of….a uniquely authentic experience. After my review of Apoteker Tepe After the Fall I struck up a conversation with owner and perfumer of the brand Holladay Saltz. Through our exchange of e-mails I realized the way Ms. Saltz composes is also in search of authenticity. Of all of the debut four perfumes the one which exemplifies this best is The Peradam.

The name comes from the following quote from Mount Analogue by author Rene Daumal; “One finds here, very rarely in the low lying areas, more frequently as one goes farther up, a clear and extremely hard stone that is spherical and varies in size—a kind of crystal, but a curved crystal, something extraordinary and unknown on the rest of the planet. Among the French of Port-des-Singes, it is called peradam.
The clarity of this stone is so great and its index of refraction so close to that of air that, despite the crystal’s great density, the unaccustomed eye hardly perceives it. But to anyone who seeks it with sincere desire and true need, it reveals itself by its sudden sparkle, like that of dewdrops.”

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Holladay Saltz

The fragrance which carries the name carries an unusual amount of emotion. I would call it yearning as it seems to want to bring the wearer closer to its great density so that it can be perceived; while knowing most will never see it. Ms. Saltz uses three extremely precious ingredients to bring The Peradam in to view; an SCO2 extraction of jasmine grandiflorum, orris butter, and sustainable Mysore sandalwood. I was curious to hear why Ms. Saltz used these ingredients and here is her answer,

Orris: fizzy, soft, powdery, smoothing and soothing (I think of it almost as a shushing sound), evocative of feminine associations due to historical use of powdered iris pallida rhizome as an ingredient in cosmetics

Jasmine: the meeting point between the charnel house and the boudoir, a night flower blooming in enveloping darkness, a lover, can be masculine or feminine depending on the context

Sandalwood: both creamy and thin, sharp and mild, evokes masculine associations due to its historical inclusion in shaving products, also sacred and Eastern associations due to its use in temples and incense”

She is correct when she states many perfume lovers will never have smelled these raw materials before as very few commercial perfumes contain them in any appreciable quantity. The Peradam forms its transparent density around the axis provided by these three special notes. The only other note in The Peradam is lily. That lily is what I first notice as it is fairly rapidly enveloped by the orris. As Ms. Saltz mentions this is the orris of the cosmetics of the past. To me it speaks of a day when women powdered their noses regularly. The lily enhances that vibe. The jasmine takes it in an entirely different direction. This extraction makes the indoles even more prominent than usual while also somehow softening them. Most of the time a fully indolic jasmine has all the swagger of a Lost Generation flapper. This indolic jasmine is a wily seductress full of whispers and lies. The sandalwood is the best use of the renewable form of the Mysore sandalwood I have tried to date. Ms. Saltz has made the modern version used here feel vintage when added into the previous notes. After about an hour all four notes have found their balance and it is then which The Peradam becomes visible in all of its glory.

The Peradam has 10-12 hour longevity and moderate sillage.

Ms. Saltz is one of the new generation of independent perfumers for whom the journey is as important as the result. I am happy to say that when she went in search of The Peradam she found a precious bit of olfactory beauty.

Disclosure: this review was based on a sample provided by Twisted Lily.

Mark Behnke