This is a great new gourmand offering from A Lab on Fire. It opens with a spicy top that smells like a combination of Red Hots and Coke. At first it seems layered over a light vanilla note, but then a deliciously rich, buttery almond accord appears and takes the vanilla along with it. I had a hard time believing the perfumer was going to pull this off successfully, but the "macaroon" in Paris*L.A. is fantastic. I actually get a little hungry smelling this. It takes you right to the heart of the dessert, and you can easily imagine all the ingredients as they're being prepared together in a bowl. Almonds, butter, sugar, and egg whites presented in a small, chewy little cakes--they're all there in just the right proportions and seem composed by a skilled, graceful hand. What I really enjoy about Paris*L.A. besides the fun, unique notes that are presented, is the fact that it's smooth and wearable. There's nothing clumsy or "blob-like" about this. It doesn't become overbearing, as gourmands often do. Uncompromisingly sweet in what it presents--Coca-Cola and Macaroons--Paris*L.A. manages to avoid becoming cloying because it is never too heavy. In fact there's almost a fresh, fizzy quality to the entire fragrance that keeps it afloat and buoyant. I suppose this is the Coca Cola in play, and it does a wonderful job of balancing the macaroon.
As far as masculine vs. feminine, this seems very much unisex to my nose and I'd have a hard time labeling it one or the other. I consider this a casual, day or nighttime fragrance. It's fun and has a playful, carefree nature. Projection is solid--it gets out there, but it's not crazy. Longevity is around 6 hours. Overall, Paris*L.A. feels like a very modern take on an unabashed gourmand, and it should find plenty of happy fans as word about it starts to spread.
Hats off to the perfumer, Laurent Le Guernec, who did an excellent job with this, and to A Lab On Fire, a company that's created quite a diverse lineup by releasing unique fragrances with a stylistically modern appeal. Paris*L.A. sits right at the top of that lis