Hats off to the people at Marni for the way in which they're handling their perfume portfolio. They hired an excellent creator, Daniela Andrier, to put together their first scent. They returned to her for their subsequent releases. And they've held their own in a fiendishly crowded environment without any undue fuss or gimmickry. Some may argue it's a shame that, since giving us the original fragrance, the brand has put out nothing but flankers, but there's something geekily satisfying about these variations on a theme; it's fascinating to see how the main accord has been tweaked and re-worked to produce markedly different effects. The latest effort is Marni Spice and, sure enough, it is recognisable as a cousin of the original Marni. In other words, it is a weightless, papery rose, placed upon a plentiful supply of musks. However, in this new incarnation, the flower is made dryer through the use of cedar, nutmeg and enough cinnamon to festoon every cappuccino in the land. It's a quietly elegant affair - reminiscent of Chanel's Chance - with sufficient charm to sustain interest for longer than you might expect. Ultimately, it fails to make a lasting impression, but I suspect it isn't even trying to. Like an expertly-judged piece of background music at a restaurant - effective precisely because it is unobtrusive - it arrives, it serves its purpose and then it makes a polite retreat. It may be easy to forget, but it's also very easy to like.
[Review based on a sample of eau de parfum provided by Marni in 2015.]