In a business environment which seems to tell the independent perfume brand that a new release every few months is a necessity; I admire those who go their own way. Which means that they run the risk of being forgotten by me as I navigate my overflowing desk. One brand which is doing things on its own timetable is Art de Parfum.
I met founder and creative director Ruta Degutyte in the fall of 2016 at a trade show where she was debuting her new brand. When I had the opportunity to sit down with her new collection, I saw a cohesiveness within that which made me feel this was one to keep an eye on.
Just after the New Year Ms. Degutyte contacted me and informed me the sixth perfume had been released; Encore une Fois. I’ll admit I had forgotten about Ms. Degutyte and Art de Parfum. Encore une Fois reminded me why I had seen such potential.
Collaborating again with perfumer Sofia Koronaiou they decided to go in a different direction. If the first five perfumes were about establishing an Art de Parfum aesthetic; Encore une Fois is about showing where it can go. What I mean by that is the first five releases were great examples of existing styles of perfume. Encore une Fois is an existing style of perfume given a gourmand twist.
When I saw the description of Encore une Fois and the quote “the salty intimacy of loved skin” I was expecting a typical aquatic of ozonic notes, ambergris, and fresh florals. All of that is here but it becomes fascinating as a twist of incense and caramel turn things upside down in the later going.
In the first seconds on my skin it is all those typical “sea salt” accord ingredients matched to a sunny bergamot. The top accord of too many to count aquatics. Rapidly they are covered with a set of alternatively fresh florals, peony, violet, and muguet. This is a nice change to the fresh air accords usually employed in aquatics. As I was admiring that a set of skin musks provide the salty sun-kissed skin effect. Again typical of the genre. Then something atypical happened. A strong swirl of dry incense accompanied the Ambrox while a luscious caramel oozed into sight with benzoin and balasam. It had my attention now. Ms. Koronaiou has found an odd intersection within these ingredients which works. I kept thinking this was a salted caramel skin accord. What helps is the Ambrox and musks make the caramel quite expansive instead of a leaden weight on the base. It all comes together in a transparent aquatic gourmand.
Encore une Fois has 12-14 hour longevity and average sillage.
Transparent floral gourmands are the current trend in mainstream perfume. I’m not sure when I have ever tried a transparent aquatic gourmand previously. I like this one so much I am hoping it also starts a trend. I don’t know how long I’ll have to wait for the next release but if taking the time to get it right, as in Encore une Fois; take all the time you need.
Disclosure: This review is based on a sample provided by Art de Parfum.