I only tried the Ma Collection version of Cocktail, but originally there were two or three different versions: Cocktail Dry, Cocktail Sweet, and I'm sure I've read of a middle sweetness version too. I'm really not sure which version the Ma Collection version was - it wasn't overly sweet, but definitely wasn't dry either.
As with most of the original Patou perfumes, I find they are so complex it is very difficult to identify individual notes. The best way I can describe Cocktail, is that I found it very similar to Caron's En Avion, but without the sandalwood, and with an added sloe gin note.
Cocktail was quite odd in that when I wore it sometimes I really didn't like it very much at all, but on other occasions was very fond of it; however, it was never one of my favourite perfumes.
It's a hot summer night in 1930. You are at an outdoor event, being hosted in a large veranda, on a grassy lawn. You look amazing in a bias cut silk dress, and shimmering bracelet. The waiter is pouring champagne cocktails. Everyone is relaxed and laughing. The mood is light and airy. Around you , the honeysuckle "clutters up the vine". You dance with whoever asks you. A perfectly elegant night, with a hint of something casual.
This is unique..perfect for a dinner party; and whatever comes after!!! Vintage Vogue has it exactly right.
When I first reviewed Cocktail I felt I had discovered an absolute winner among the Ma Collection fragrances of Jean Patou! I hugely enjoy this light-hearted citrus-fruity (honeysuckle I learn from the reviewer below) opening and its chypré notes joining in the heart. It's fizzy like a self-made Gin Fizz at a summer party, refreshing and enjoyable! Try Roja Dove's Diaghilev, which has a related vibe and feel, although slightly 'heavier' towards the drydown. However, the drydown here with the sweet and rich florals mixed with the civet creates an accord not as offensive as what Mona di Orio comes up with (Nuit Noire) but, still, I can't enjoy this. This review is for the EdT!
31st July, 2011 (last edited: 29th November, 2011)
I have a vintage sample, so some notes may have deteriorated over time. This is an odd floral chypre, of the old school. It may have a fruity tone in it, but not the modern fruit shampoo...more a riotous bold fruit note snaking around in a garden of sharp astringent flowers. No one has mentioned it, but I also detect rose. A sharp green glassy rose. I don't want to be too judgmental of this sample, but it's hard to imagine who this scent would fit. It's a mite sharp and angular for either day or night. It needs to relax and have a cocktail!
I give a resounding second to the reviews below. Cocktail is a sophisticated, elegant fragrance and is one of the esteemed Ma Collection fragrances from Jean Patou. Whenever the subject comes up of what to wear to dinner, the discussion often concludes with some demanding that no fragrance be worn at all, while die-hards will be hard pressed to do without their fragrance. Cocktail easily solves the problem. It is anything but overwhelming and stays close to the skin. I've been to events where the smell of Amarige or Cinnabar or Aromatics Elixir almost overshadowed everything else. These aren't terrible fragrances. Far from it. But their effect can be gigantic, especially in a setting where food is involved and especially if the wearers are anosmic to their own fragrance and spritz just a bit more than normal because it's an evening event. Enter Cocktail. This gem will never compete with the food on your plate or the liquid in your glass. In fact, it will complement both. Notes are already listed, so I won't repeat them. And, yes, there is some subtle and gorgeous amber in here. Perfect for sport or an evening out, Cocktail is a classic that deserves to be returned to Patou's regular line up. It's too good to be put out to pasture.