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Today I begin a most eagerly-awaited sampling of exceptional Jasmine perfumes in search of new loves.  My yet unused Perfumery Notes Kit will be of help in this delightful task.  

 

First, Jasmine itself.  The kit's "Guide to the Notes of Perfumery" informs me it includes a sample of Jasmine Glandiforum Absolute.  "Most likely the most important perfumery material, it is indispensable in Oriental and Fougère fragrance types.  There are now many molecules of the Jasmine type used in commercial perfumes of today (Benzyl Acetate, Jasmonyl, Jasmone Cis to name a few). The natural Jasmine Grandiflorum Absolute was used at 17.5% in Joy (Patou 1935).”  Here’s what it looks like:

 

 

A rapt apostle, I approach the font of my obsession, I locate the bottle of absolute and sniff … hmmm, well, actually I first have to trot downstairs to locate something to help me unscrew the top . . . be right back!  Okay, in the process I also retrieved the small round container of coffee beans in my purse at all times nowadays in case of emergency.

 

Formerly reluctant like any magnificence exposed to apprentice hands, its top now turns.  I reassure it of my allegiance. I sniff.  At first I don’t believe what I think I detect.  Okay, are we supposed to cry?  How improve on such glory?  By coincidence, organ music actually IS playing on iTunes at this second!  Let me see what it is.  Wow!  Something from the album, The Timeless Madonna.  Of course.  Am I not at the high altar of perfume?

 

What does Jasmine smell like?  Itself.  Indolic, narcotic, rich.  It feels like it loves the dark.  Does it?  This is no cheerful daisy, no sunflower.  It’s a voluptuous night queen, finery at her command, not a thorn or sharp edge to her.  Having sniffed, I think I’ll now recognize her anywhere. The only question is whether she is further ennobled (assuming that’s possible) in combination or misunderstood, disrespected, even criminalized?

 

Here are the major suspects.  Before I start, am I missing any must-sniff notables?

 

A La Nuit by Serge Lutens
Jasmin Imperatrice Eugenie by Creed
Jasmin 17 Le Labo
Jasmin de Nuit by The Different Company
Jasmin et Cigarette by ETat Libre d'Orange
Jasmin Full by Montale
Jasmin Noir by Bvlgari
Jasmin Rouge by Tom Ford Private Blend
Jasmine Cologne by Demeter
Jasmine White Moss EdP by Estee Lauder Private Collection
Joy EdP by Patou
Lady Caron by Caron
Le Jasmin Annick Goutal
Love & Tears by Killian
Narcotic Venus by Nasommato
Nuda by Nasommato
Odalisque by Nicolai
Olene by Diptyque
Prune Jasmine by Laurence Dumont
Samsara Serge Lutens
Sarrasins by Serge Lutens
Sous le Vent Guerlain
Vol de Nuit by Guerlain