With its melange of at least 21 ingredients, Balahe is certainly a complex floral that is quite pleasant. One wants to find something about this most popular of the house of Leonard's few productions, but I can't rise above the feeling it is just "okay," not in any way unusual or outstanding.
As a mixed floral it is perfectly decent, but not worth going out of one's way to locate.
Head notes: Aldehydes, pineapple, coriander, plum, mandarin orange, clary sage, anise, bergamot
Heart notes: Tuberose, iris, orchid, orris root, jasmine, ylang-ylang, rose, orange blossom
Base notes: Sandalwood, opoponax, musk, civet, vanilla, vetiver.
Balahé was introduced in the early 80's when there was a huge selection of great classics as well as brand new daring fragrances to chose from. This was a great era for perfume aficionados. All olfactory categories were rather well represented but since the introduction of Opium in 1977, oriental spicy fragrances were all the rage. Balahé is definitely oriental and spicy but the floral elements are the most important of this exotic composition. The top tangy fruit notes never quite fade away once the dry-down begins. They simply become rounder, less edgy. The floral heart is extravagant to say the least. There is a definite tropical island feel to it. Finally, the warm, dark and sensuous base notes give the fragrance a most amazing longevity. Obviously, Balahé is not for everyone. It is a very sweet, almost candyish, fragrance but it's sweetness is natural, unlike the artificial gourmand fragrances. To me, Balahé is one of the sexiest fragrances there is. It can be loud and cloying on some women but when it is worn by the right person, it is absolutely magnificent.
07th June, 2012 (last edited: 08th June, 2012)
Tonights great discovery! Amouage copied 80% of "Balahe" when making "The Library Collection Opus III" !! "Opus III" is an almost exact (but sweeter/more" rounded") copy of "Balahe" edt (by LEONARD), which is discontinued. But "Balahe" can still be found for a good price on the internet !! AND best of all = you can get "Balahe" for a *MUCH* better price. And the black Balahe-bottle, with a silk red string is such a beautiful piece of art itself!! Oh, good I saved me some money by already owning this scent in Balahe! :)
At the initial blast of greens, anise & bergamot, I was VERY impressed. Unfortunately, this exhilaration lasted for about 15 seconds. Next came pineapple & plums, quickly followed by jasmine, rose & vanilla. Soon, the whole thing turned into sweet, fruity, powder.....Bubblegum! I am so disappointed.
Oddly, with its gentle plum note and its powdery dry down, it reminds me very much of Chant d'Aromes (a chypre!)! I have had the pleasure of comparing the two side by side, and Balahe is, in fact, like the Oriental sister-scent of Chant d'Aromes.
It's a super complex scent, but another one, sadly, I would have to advise non-vintage appreciators to steer clear of. The opening is slightly challenging, and bitter, especially. But its dry down is warm, and deep.. and very comforting.