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What's in a name? Misdirection that's what. The combination of these notes sounds like a marriage made in a Fabergé (the jeweller, natch) workshop – exquisite, to be cherished eternally. Both are so infinitely complex with sweet, earthy, damp pleasures in their folds, that one imagines their cilia entwining in everlasting bliss.
Except I had forgotten that J-C Ellena seems to prefer the dry salt-sweet woodsy aspect of vetiver, rather than the entire spectrum it presents. As for the tonka, I'm sure it's in there somewhere, but its fudgy richness has been slimmed down – what's the point?
Fortunately this perfume doesn't typify the sado-minimalism of Ellena's late style, there's a good deal going on. Characteristically (for Ellena) piercing citruses, a slept-in tobacco note that will instantly dispel the effects of having showered, toasty nutty and sweet things, a bit of coffee here, a touch of chocolate there. It all hangs together rather beautifully, and that is eventually what counts. This is a creation that breathes with life, it has temperament, moods.
The deep drydown is sweet, smooth vetiver with an almost aldehydic lift; perfumes rarely give that impression so late into the wearing.
(Still looking for that marriage of vetiver with tonka that will boom out like a hall full of church organs. One can but dream…)
28th June, 2012