Category Archives: perfume review

Party All Night Long, Kilian Liquors

This year’s carnival was especially short and it’s already Ash Wednesday today. Not that it really mattered since the whole world continues to live in sanitary regime so no big parties are allowed these days anyway. But still it would’ve been nice to enjoy it in one way or another – even if at home. Parties usually involve alcohol so I thought why not tell you about two fragrances from Kilian that premiered in 2020. At least one of them could be a good substitute of having some booze while dancing your legs out. So without further ado let’s pour a glass and find out what it smells like.

Angels’ Share is a very warm, sensual and enveloping perfume. It begins with a boozy cognac accord that feels incredibly smooth on the skin. It’s like a combination of full-bodied liquor flavor, some sweet ambery tones in hues of golden, orange and yellow and a decadent woody aroma of aged oak barrel. This in fact is very apt impression because the name of this fragrance refers to a natural process of losing a part of liquid through evaporation when the liquor is aging. That lost part is called angels’ share. After a while the fragrance unveils more of that delicious & rich booziness. It also gains a spicy edge when cinnamon joins the composition.

I like the cinnamon note in Angels’ Share because it shows more than one of its facets. On one hand it smells quite woody, as if you were experiencing a just removed cinnamon tree bark. It’s even slightly earthy. Then after some time it presents its more typical side which is warm, spicy and has a sweet, tingly aftertaste. Oak absolute accents additionally the woody aspect of the scent. A dry wood note permeated with the liquory scent. Tonka bean brings some smooth richness – gently spicy, creamy and almost aromatic to the nose. Like a bruleed sugar a bit. A tad of chocolate with delicious nougat appear as the praline note arrives in the base. Oriental and rich vanilla add more full-bodied flavor and a nice texture. Relatively dry and rough sandalwood crowns this interesting perfume.

If we think of Angels’ Share as fire then a second perfume in the Liquors collection is definitely its counterpart and should be considered as ice – especially that its a part of its name. Roses on Ice opens with a blast of cucumber that packs a serious punch in the opening. As much as I generally dislike the note in any perfume I have to admit that in this Kilian it is very realistic. You get the vibrant green note of just removed cucumber peel that reveals a light green pulp that gives off a vegetal, watery smell. After a moment it starts to resemble melon – the scent gets slightly more fruity and similar to calone but much lighter. Some people probably won’t last to go beyond this point.

Underneath the opening cucumber tone there’s a splash of zesty lime that adds a citric element to Roses on Ice. There’s also a juniper berry facet that adds a cold, metallic facet that at the same time gives the association that instantly links to gin tonic and ice cubes. Rose was supposed to be a key ingredient of this new perfume but on my skin I can hardly see it happening. The composition is still heavily dominated by cucumber and while I can detect some green floral back note that slightly veers towards crispy geranium leaf, saying it’s very important would be so wrong. After couple hours the base becomes kind of fluffy. Musk and sandalwood slightly change my perception but they don’t do much good in changing my overall feeling towards it.

I like the concept of the Liquors collection from Kilian and I think it was a brilliant idea to present the fragrances in bottles that resemble a styled crystal glass for your booze. Despite not being a real follower of the brand I would be curious to find out if they explore other liquors in the future or if cognac will be the only one due to Hennessy expertise and heritage. Whichever it might be, I liked Angels’ Share a lot and wouldn’t mind wearing it from time to time. On the other hand it’s olfactively related to Amber Oud of which I still have a bit in my decant from Undina. These eau de parfums come in 50 ml size and were created by Benoist Lapouza and Frank Voelkl respectively.

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Flaming Dancers, Memo Argentina

When I was a school boy and when I started getting more plump my parents signed me up for dance classes hoping that this extra exercise through dancing will help to keep my weight under control. By coincidence my best friend at a time, a classmate, became my dance partner. Over a couple of years of attending these classes I learned waltz, cha-cha, rumba and more but to these days I find it difficult to just freestyle when the music plays. I didn’t dislike these classes but today I prefer to watch. I thought that a move “Shall We Dance” was absolutely great & funny, with a lot of dance passion. New one from Memo is meant to make you feel the fire of tango. Ready to dance?

Soft tingle of pink pepper is the first chord we smell & hear when Memo Argentina starts to play. It surrounds the wearer with warmth and with a very gentle, sensual spiciness. Even though technically it’s not a pepper I prefer it to the black pepper which to me is often too harsh, metallic and cuisine-driven. With pink pepper things are more balanced and simply more pretty. Rose, which is the main performer of this fragrance makes an entrance after a few short minutes. Her dress, colored crimson red, has the same shade as rose petals used in this perfume. The material it’s made of is fluid, moving with every step she takes, highlighting the shape of her irresistible silhouette.

The smell of roses in Argentina is very potent, rich and vibrant. The intensity that emanates from the skin instantly makes me think of big flowers with petals that are like a very dark red velvet. This Turkish rose is hypnotising thanks to its beauty and it fascinates the nose just like watching a pair of tango dancers fascinates the eyes when you observe how their bodies get perfectly synchronized, as if in a trance. After some time the rose note becomes more oriental and it also reveals some greener, geranium-like nuances. But the intricate bouquet continues to blossom. Two kinds of jasmine were used here and while I smell their presence to me they only let the rose stand out.

The pace of this dance gradually changes and you can almost feel how every half an hour allows Memo Argentina to soak up the oriental aura. The main highlight of this process is the reveal of oud at some point. I know some of you might roll their eyes reading this but please believe me that in this perfume it’s something out of ordinary. I find oud in this new fragrance to be very toned down & quite resinous, viscous. It definitely improves the perception of the crimson red color of rose petals and these two ingredients are simply meant to be together as they unfold a multidimensional word full of beautiful impressions. I quickly though of this perfume that it’s stunning and worth telling you about.

But it’s not done yet & something’s happening after a couple of hours of inhaling the swooning vapors of Argentina. Rose and oud is already a wonderful combination but at a later point in fragrance development this new creation developed a brand new quality, some lightness & transparency entered this tiny perfume universe. Imagine magnolia sharing some of its silky tenderness with a hint of something lemony. That’s exactly what happens! The perfume becomes brighter, more magical. It doesn’t last long but leaves a lasting impression. Then the scent densifies again as verdant-oily cypriol & caramel-like benzoin carry on with the rose until its bath time.

Argentina, a newest creation of perfumer Alienor Massenet that will join Memo Art Land collection is an example of true fragrance craftsmanship that deserves to be praised. Not many compositions are able to wow me like that at first sampling attempt. Not only is it complex but I also find it to be full of contrasts. In Memo Argentina you can find energy, burning passion, fierceness, but also some innocence and tenderness. Like a clash opposite forces, like hot and cold. And the result is worth trying this new release. Argentina is available in EdP concentration, in 75 ml bottles that feature a gorgeous graphic of two birds ‘dancing’ in mid air & one of them is holding a rose. So pretty!

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