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I think it's true that the dramatic and fantastic opening of Black Orchid trumps the drydown, and while that's a questionable strategy, I don't know if I'd go so far as to call it an insult, and yet. . .
This is such an experience: a fruity floral not in the usual sense, but rather... it's as though the flesh of fruit were cloned somehow from a richly fragrant blossom, resulting in an edible fruit which is allowed to overripen, then is sliced open. A succulent, seductive perfume of decay, although there's none of the mustiness of the patchouli evident. Perhaps, I couldn't help imagining, there might be a resemblance here to the scents of the emanative wounds of the blessed St Lydwinne, whose body was at one point separated into three discreet sections representing the holy trinity, and from whose stigmata was said to waft uncannily alluring floral frangrances.
When I sampled it, the drydown seemed like the heavy syrup of a "fruit cocktail" made from this weird relgio-sci-fi fruit-flower. But when I actually wore it in a full application, the fragrance settled into something spicier, not unlike l'artisan's safran troublant.
I have to admit it's not one I will "reach for" often, but I love it anyhow.
09 April, 2007