I do enjoy when I discover a scent from a House that I don't expect. I've gone through most of the By Kilian line and have found them to be dense collections of notes from the tuberose in Beyond Love to the rose in Liaisons Dangereuse to the tobacco in Back to Black these fragrances can be overwhelming. By Kilian recently opened a section in my local Sak's and I had the opportunity to try all of the fragrances in the line. The one that surprised me was the 2008 release Prelude to Love, which is unusually light and refreshing for a By Kilian fragrance.
Calice Becker, who has been the perfumer on most of the By Kilian line, starts with a lovely citrus mix of lemon and orange with a hint of grapefruit lurking underneath. This is a pretty standard citrus opening but it has an unusual depth to it and unlike many citrus top notes these persist into the heart of Prelude to Love. What they find in the heart is iris and this is the cool version of iris and it is the right choice to match with the citrus. Occasionally this cool iris accord is too cold and leaves me a little frostbitten, as in L'Artisan's Iris Pallida. In Prelude to Love the coolness is a match to the citrus and imparts a refreshing quality to this fragrance.The base adds a little spice in the fresh tones of cardamom and ginger beofre a sheer white musk brings this all home.
Prelude to Love, for a citrus forward scent, has amazing longevity and the lemon in particular lasts a very long time on me. The sillage is modest for Prelude to Love.
When perusing the nine fragrances in the By Kilian line I can easily play the children's game of "Which Doesn't Belong and Why?" and call out Prelude to Love. Even though it doesn't share the same temperament as the rest of the By Kilian line it definitely shares the quality.