The iris has been called funereal. That may be true, the scent of irises is a bit dark and a bit heavy, but that is only one aspect of the scent to be sure. There are others: the creamy soft note that is in the orris butter itself. You find that in few perfumes because the synthetic irises do not mimic the butter note successfully. The only place I find the note in all its unctuous spread on bread glory, is in my bottle of Parfums de Nicolai Balkis, and my bottle is an old one, presumably the first version of that fragrance. The fat deposits of iris, the gourmand part if you like, are there in the scent after the initial raspberry note subsides. Then all of a sudden you catch the soft malleable scent of orris butter and this is a creamy scent that practically makes my mouth water. Only later do the purple crepuscular aspects of iris creep in like twilight at a pastry shop. In this case the intermingled scent of raspberry jam, bourbon roses and abandoned coffee cups lingers
Iris is one of the most expensive notes in the world of perfumery, or used to be, before the development of anisaldehyde, and Alpha Irones or the heavy synthetic iris Irival that makes an appearance in Iris Silver Mist. As you can see these days iris is unlikely to be natural, the cost alone more or less precludes that, but there are plenty of irises on the market some self advertising, some not.
Among the synthetics my personal favorite has to be the discontinued ShalimarParfum Initial. This perfume had nothing to do with Shalimar, instead the scent had a good deal in common with Dior Homme and DH’s lovely synthetic iris note was reproduced but lightened just a little bit. They were pretty close to one another as compositions. I went out and spritzed Dior Homme from my local Sephora and then Shalimar PI and found out how close the kinship was. They were siblings really, not even cousins. The Shalimar PI * did not prosper. I suppose the fact that the new perfume had nothing to do with actual Shalimar hurt the sales in the end since those who loved Shalimar could not love this new iris concoction. Continue reading →
Nearing the end of February I find that I have not gotten around to one of my favorite topics: chocolate.
Perhaps it came to mind because last weekend I was in Hershey, Pennsylvania, and you can’t go far there without chocolate heaving into view in one form or another. Then I started to hanker after a recently discontinued Guerlain, Iris Ganache, which yearning is sure to wind up making me poorer. I’m mystified by Iris Ganache’s appeal for me anyhow, since I’m the blogger who said she didn’t own any gourmands. Continue reading →