Noel au Balcon is the beginning of a Freanch proverb "NoŽl au balcon, P‚ques aux tisons." Which translates to "If the weather is mild at Christmas it will be cold at Easter". In November of 2007 Antoine Maisondieu created Noel au Balcon as an exclusive to European Sephoras for the holidays. It was discontinued with the close of the holiday season in 2008. That's a shame because this is one of the best scents I've tried from Etat Libre D'Orange and with a wider distribution could have been a mainstream winner for the line, I think. The beginning of this is a beautiful honeyed fruit as the honey drenches a mix of orange and apricot. This is a restrained sweetness and it is a hallmark of this scent as M. Maisondieu uses notes throughout that if used with an unsubtle hand would've ruined this scent. This scent then takes a turn into the spices and pepper, cumin and cinnamon are the prominent notes in the heart. This could be a jarring transition but in this scent it is not. The progression is unusually smooth and the spices are a refreshing contrast to the sweet beginning. The base returns to a mix of sweet as vanilla and musk bring this one home. M. Maisondieu has created a beautiful interplay of sweet and spicy here. One thing is for sure this is not a "mild Christmas" so I can look forward to a less chilly Easter.