Scented Advent, December 21

Scented Advent, December 21

On today’s winter solstice, Advent brought to me Hedonist Rose, by Viktoria Minya, a Hungarian perfumer based in Paris. Another perfume with a white wine accord!

Glass of white wine with flowers and fruit
White wine bouquet; image from Wine Enthusiast.

The notes list is (going by a published list as well as my own nose): lemon, peach, rose (top); rose, peach, white wine (heart); clove, amber, musk, vanilla (base). However, I perceive the top notes as facets of the dominant rose, since so many roses do smell of lemon and fruit together with the unmistakable floral note of “rose.” As soon as I applied it, my nose said “Rose!”, not “lemon” or “peach.” In fact, if you dislike clove in fragrance, fear not! I don’t smell a stand-alone clove at all. Just a slightly spicy rose. Similarly, the heart stage is all about rose and it begs the questions, which came first — the white wine or the rose? Because many white wines have intensely floral bouquets, as illustrated above. Not to mention the peach accord, which is also a scent note found in both roses and white wines.

This is a very summery rose, purely floral. Because of that peach note, it calls to mind the many pretty roses that come in shades of peachy-pink:

Display of peach-colored rose blossoms
Peach roses; image from fleurtyfleurs.com

As Hedonist Rose dries down, it becomes warmer and slightly less fruity, with a soft white musk at the base. I don’t pick up any vanilla or amber. All in all, this is a very appealing rose fragrance if you like rose scents, which I do; but there are others I would choose ahead of this one, both because of the fragrance and because of price. For some other suggestions, see my “Roses de Mai Marathon” posts! If I do that again next spring, maybe I’ll write about Hedonist Rose and Viktoria Minya in more detail.

Have you tried any of her line of perfumes? The original Hedonist seems to have been quite popular.

Array of peach-colored rose blossoms
Peachy roses; image from fleurtyfleurs.com
Scent Sample Sunday: St. Clair Scents’ Frost

Scent Sample Sunday: St. Clair Scents’ Frost

I have long been a fan of Diane St. Clair’s fragrance creations, especially Gardener’s Glove but also First Cut. Frost is the third of that trio, her first releases which arrived in 2018. (For three very comprehensive reviews, you must read Kafkaesque’s detailed dissection of each). When I first read the name of that scent, I thought it would relate to frost, as in fall and winter temperatures, but instead, it refers to the poet Robert Frost, who wrote many of his most famous poems a short distance from Diane’s dairy farm in Vermont. Per her website:

“This scent follows the story of Frost’s poem, “To Earthward” which describes the transformation of youthful love, from “sweet like the petals of the rose” and “sprays of honeysuckle” to painful love, which stings like “bitter bark”, “burning clove” and “rough earth.”

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Perfume Chat Room, December 4

Perfume Chat Room, December 4

Welcome to the weekly Perfume Chat Room, perfumistas! I envision this chat room as a weekly drop-in spot online, where readers may ask questions, suggest fragrances, tell others their SOTD, comment on new releases or old favorites, and respond to each other. The perennial theme is fragrance, but we can interpret that broadly. This is meant to be a kind space, so please try not to give or take offense, and let’s all agree to disagree when opinions differ. In fragrance as in life, your mileage may vary! YMMV.

Today is Friday, December 4, the first Friday of the last month of 2020. Hurray! This year has been famously destructive in many ways, but I see light at the end of the proverbial tunnel. In my own religion, Christianity, the season of Advent began last Sunday, and it is one of my favorite times of the year. Not just because of preparations for holidays (with most celebrations on hold this year), but because it is a season of hope and anticipation. Many religions and cultures have some observance of this time of year, leading toward the Northern Hemisphere’s winter solstice when the Earth is tilted furthest away from the Sun and the day is shortest, night longest. Not surprisingly, a common theme is the emergence of light from darkness, since our winter solstice marks the end of daylight diminishing and the start of the gradual increase in light.

The season also brings with it many wonderful smells! Classic associations with this time of year are evergreens like pine and fir; spiced drinks like mulled wine and apple cider; beeswax from lit candles; incense from places of worship; sweet and spiced baked goods, often including vanilla; woody and smoky scents that recall hearth fires. I enjoy them all. Some perfumers try to create fragrances that evoke cold, like notes of snow, or ice, or frost. I was so excited in 2018 when Jo Malone had a limited edition fragrance called White Moss & Snowdrop, I thought I’d love it. Sadly, I didn’t. It was pleasant enough, but it didn’t make a big impression. My wallet was grateful! Now I’m excited at the news that Dawn Spencer Hurwitz will create a new fragrance for Zoologist, called Snowy Owl. Can’t wait to try it!

What fragrances do you enjoy at this time of year? They don’t have to be perfumes, you can list any scent!