Unknown Pleasures is uncanny, unlike any other citrus OR gourmand that I've smelled previously. It walks the line of a citrus bomb of lemon and bergamot as well as a sweet overload of waffle cone and a host of other gourmand notes.
Comparisons to lemon pie, a lemon icee, or any other sort of lemon dessert / confection are pretty fair. It actually reminds me of cotton candy to some extent, the citrus influence notwithstanding. I get a decent amount of the waffle cone aspect rather than vanilla or tonka, so it lands somewhere between lemon gelato and candy.
Performance is strong, not quite as strong as Copper Skies or Follow, but certainly worthwhile for a fragrance that I'd say you need to love in order to buy at $140 for 100ml.
7 out of 10
"Ooooh What's that? That's LOVELY!"
The boyfriend. Never comments. The boyfriend is the most asnomic person I have ever met. The only other perfumes he has ever complimented unbidden are Vanille Absolutement by L'Artisan and Putain du Palaces by Etat Libre d'Orange. Given I have about 50 frags in my wardrobe at any one time, sometimes changing my perfume twice a day, and that I test-drive handfuls of samples about twice week and he doesn't seem to notice, means that the odds of this exciting occurrence happening are very low. Very low indeed.
You could argue Unknown Pleasures is a little bit obvious. The initial blast of lemon curd hits hard and then the gooey-gourmand syrupy-sweetness of maple sweeps in with tooth-aching levels of sugar over the vanilla-vanilla-vanilla. I didn't want to like it but I find it strangely addictive.
I've been layering it with more earthy pleasures such as Patchouli Antique by Les Nereides, and Fleur Poudree de Musc (discontinued) by the same house to give it a bit more base...but still, that first spritz of Unknown Pleasures always garners compliments from my bloke.
Sometimes it's not about my nose, about how sophisticated or complicated or cultured or rare a fragrance is, sometimes it's just about your boyfriend saying, "Ooooo, What's that? That's lovely".
Mr Kerosene, I doff my hat.
25th February, 2015 (last edited: 26th February, 2015)
There is a brief flash of an intensely sour lemon note, as astringent and piercing as the one in Profumum's Acqua Viva, although sadly, not as natural-smelling. Almost immediately, though, the high pitch of the lemon note is brought down a notch or two with a dark, tannic element that smells like coffee or licorice, but which is actually Earl Grey tea. Whatever it is, the effect moves the perfume that crucial distance from sour lemon juice to a comforting baked good like lemon tier cake. It is delicious.
The lemon cake smell shuffles off the stage pretty quickly, allowing the star performer, the caramel, to play its part. It is a pretty simple scent, actually - just lemon cake and caramel - but it does these two things well. The caramel is deep, unctuous, and thick. Also: intensely sweet (well, caramel is). But there is a nice toasty flavor to the caramel, and a vaguely smoked feel that stop the perfume from diving off the edge into unbearably sweet. For much of the progression of this perfume, I thought this edge was toasted coconut, or something like that creamy, stodgy coating around a Licorice Allsort (specifically the yellow flavor 'round' one). Supposedly, though, this note is waffle cone. Waffle cones are more a texture than a taste for me, but in general, I would agree that there is a pleasant toasted "baked goods" or biscuity tone to the caramel.
I like this a lot better than I thought I would, but still not enough to invest in a full bottle. I am beginning to realize that I have a tightly defined triangle of gourmand accents that I like or can tolerate (mainly saffron, some nuts, coffee, and certain lactonic notes) but Unknown Pleasures lies just outside of that tolerance line. If only the unctuousness of the caramel had been tempered for longer by that sharp lemon note at the start, or had been counterpointed in the later stages by a note not so entirely matching in sweetness (that baked goods / waffle note), perhaps by coffee or salt? Never mind, maybe it's not for me, but it's a very well done gourmand, very much on the sweet side. And I have to say that the longevity was immense, which was a bit of a surprise!
Hot lemon curd poured over vanilla ice-cream sprinkled with crushed waffle cones. A sundae to warm one's soul through coldest of seasons.
The notes listed are unmistakably present. The sweetness is well balanced by the citrus notes and the waffle cone cannot be disputed, especially after the note has been suggested.
Recommended if you wish to provoke cravings for lemony desserts in everyone you meet; or enjoy torturing yourself with an aroma clearly designed to induce salivation… an effect which lasts a few hours.
Big lemon on the opening.Also tea and baked goods. These elements create an effect almost like sitting down for cookies for breakfast; slightly indulgent, but also comforting. After about 30 minutes, the baked cookie notes start becoming more intense; gourmand all the way. At the beginning, it was almost as if this could have gone one or two ways, light and citrusy or gourmand- it moved toward gourmand on my skin. I am really liking this! Just looked at the notes- waffle cone!Yes, that works for me, memories of waffle cones at the Delaware shore! Well done.
Now, waffle cone does not SOUND like something one would want on their body, but this is quiet nice. An hour in, and this is a satisfying gourmand. Not too sweet, very wearable. Two hours in, this is an extremely nice gourmand. At times, they can be far too sweet and coying for me. Here, the vanilla, citrus and baked cookie (waffle) notes are well balanced, warm and enveloping, and not too sweet. I am shocked at how much I like this perfume. Longevity is solid and projection is good but not too strong; perfect, I believe, for this type of scent. I could see having a bottle of this for winter. Really very much worth checking out.