Tuesday, 27 February 2018

Once Upon A Scent - Persolaise On Romantic Perfumes In ParfumPlus

My latest article in the Middle East's ParfumPlus magazine turns to the not-unfamiliar connection between perfume and romance. To read it, please click on this link which will take you to a flip-book edition of the entire issue.


Friday, 23 February 2018

"Your Claims Have To Be Honest" - An Interview With Rodrigo Flores-Roux

With no fewer than 12 Fragrance Foundation Awards under his belt - the first one being for Clinique's Happy - Rodrigo Flores-Roux is unquestionably one of the most successful and acclaimed perfumers working today. He's composed scents for countless high street names. He's used his talents in the somewhat more adventurous world of independent perfumery. And he holds a senior position at the fragrance production company he's called home for many years: Givaudan. In other words, there isn't much he hasn't achieved.

Since the start of the century, he's become associated with the fragrance division of the John Varvatos fashion brand - he has put together all of its scents - and it was in this capacity that he flew into London to discuss his latest piece of work, Artisan Pure. Like all the other entries in the Artisan range, it emphasises the lighter, more citrus-based elements of its construction, so I started my conversation with Flores-Roux by asking how Pure differs from the rest of the collection.

Rodrigo Flores-Roux: This is the fourth chapter of the Artisan story. We worked around the colour white, the texture of cotton, the texture of linen. Sandblasted glass. Glass that had been eroded by the sea and the sand. That kind of thing. And purity. The starting point was precisely an image that I have from my adolescence. We were invited somewhere by a colleague of my Dad. He was part of this very aristocratic family from Veracruz, from the coast of the Gulf Of Mexico. And that area is a very important part of coffee cultivation. We went to their hacienda, which is a coffee plantation. A very elegant, old, beautiful place. And I have a dear memory from there. The room that I was staying in with my brother overlooked a little courtyard which had potted citrus trees. Outside were the groves of coffee trees. The flower of the coffee tree is extremely fragrant. And the fields were in full bloom. So it was just like a cascade of perfume coming into the bedroom. From one side, the scent of the citrus trees, and then this very perfumed atmosphere of the coffee tree blossom.

Monday, 19 February 2018

Persolaise Mini-Reviews: October to December 2017 [part 1]

It's mini time again: another round-up of my reviews from Twitter and Instagram. To read the others in the series, please click here.

La Petite Robe Noire Black Perfecto from Guerlain (Thierry Wasser; 2017)*
Another well-written chapter in the little black dress story, this time topping the rosy cherry with a hint of dry, bitter leather.

Olim from Trudon (Lyn Harris; 2017)*
Before fougères became rough and uncouth, they smelt a little bit like this. Delicate anisic spices and lavender. Almost creamy benzoin and myrrh base. The power of lowering one’s voice.

Mortel from Trudon (Yann Vasnier: 2017)*
Incense has the ability to be the most enveloping, the most meditative of perfumery notes. But sometimes it can be rendered chilly and reedy. Mortel falls into latter camp. Strange, geranium-like brightness doesn’t help.

Wednesday, 14 February 2018

Persolaise Love At First Scent Episode 12 On YouTube

The 12th episode of Love At First Scent was broadcast on Facebook Live on Sunday and you can now catch it on YouTube. As always, you can watch it above or by clicking here. In this edition I covered

Feather Supreme from Jusbox (at the start of the video)
Yael from Sammarco (at the 15:00 minute mark)
Russian Tea from Masque Milano (at the 25:00 minute mark)
The Tycoon from St Giles (at the 54:00 minute mark)
Amsterdam from Gallivant (at the 1:02:00 minute mark)
and my classic choice was
Poison esprit de parfum from Christian Dior (at the 37:30 minute mark)

There were also brief mentions of:
Declaration parfum from Cartier
The Writer from St Giles
The Actress from St Giles

The original video is still on Facebook. Click here to watch it.


Friday, 9 February 2018

Persolaise Review: Dryad from Papillon (Liz Moores; 2017)

It’s so wonderful to behold a perfumer maturing right under your nose. With her debut trio, Papillon’s Liz Moores proved that hers is a considerable talent, even though at least two of her compositions justifiably attracted the view that independent perfumery’s rough-edged statements can be overly reactionary. But then there was Angélique, Moores’ unassuming, subtle homage to 70s styles: a quiet harbinger of great things to come. And sure enough, we now have Dryad, an aptly-named, pastoral dreamscape lifted by plush, velvety mosses and mimosa-narcissus florals. Yes, it projects a retro sensibility - almost impossible to avoid when you use galbanum-style greens - but it does so without cliches or nostalgia. This is a fully-fledged scent in its own right, confident in its own identity to the extent that it doesn’t feel the need to set itself against mainstream peers. In other words, I’d say it is Moores’ most complete and most rounded composition to date, a timeless vision of young bodies - skins gleaming with a thin sheen of perspiration - lying on dry grass, looking straight up at the sky, whispering tales of summer longings. A sylvan delight.

[Review based on a samole of eau de parfum obtained by the author in 2017.]

PS Please don't forget that the next episode of Love At First Scent will be broadcast this Sunday; more details at this link.


Wednesday, 7 February 2018

Next Episode Of Love At First Scent On Facebook Live This Sunday

Here's a brief announcement that the next episode of my Facebook Live series, Love At First Scent, will be broadcast on Sunday 11th February at 3:00 pm UK time (10:00 am New York time). To watch it, please click on this link to the Persolaise Perfumes Facebook page.

I haven't yet decided what I might sniff in this particular instalment, but there are quite a few goodies I could choose, including new releases from Gallivant, Sammarco and St Giles (a brand that's just about to launch at Selfridges) as well as a new flanker to a bestselling modern classic (see the picture above for a clue).

I hope you'll be able to tune in.



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