Tag Archives: Antonio Alessandria

Monday Quick Sniffs, part 52


Fara by Antonio Alessandria is a perfume that was introduced during last Pitti Fragranze. The perfume opens with ultra zesty lemon and aromatic bergamot, making it very refreshing and mouth-watering. These citrus molecules also go deep inside your nose providing a gentle tinge of bitterness. Lime, which appears after a couple of minutes makes Fara more sour and still very delicious. Not much later peppermint joins the composition and when it does, the perfume mimics a just served glass of mojito. Fresh, sparkling and energetic. Heart of Fara is the unexpected blend. First there is a silky-floral magnolia note which is followed by cumin. The latter one provides a bit of dirtiness and some bodily odour impressions – but to me those were quite inoffensive. In the drydown the perfume effuses a cold scent of frankincense which smells as if it was taken straight from a church. It’s combined with cedarwood which provides more structure and which is a bit warmer than incense. Finally we have musky tones which makes the drydown more carnal. A truly unusual transformation.


J.U.S Parfums is a new brand which had its debut in 2018. The concept for the brand is to release fragrances that were once submitted for clients consideration but were discarded in the evaluation process. J.U.S wanted to give a chance to perfumers to launch their favorite creation that never saw the light of the day. Sopoudrage, by Fabrice Pellegrin is a scent dedicated to iris. It begins with a scent reminiscent of wet concrete – which comes from cashmeran. After a couple of minutes the earthy and rooty facets of iris appear in the lead but they are not very strong & actually they evolve into more of an ashy smell – quite austere and “distant” when you smell it. It has that feeling of vast empty space. There is also a hint of rose accompanied by a solar hedione which brings a light jasmine aroma into play. The perfume features also a couple more aromachemicals, such as Iralia, Muscenone and Iso E Super. It’s a pleasant take on iris theme and since quite a few synthetics are involved I think of it as a modern “experiment”. The whole brand seems fun and their pop-art inspired packaging sure attracts attention. Would you try this scent?


Le Frenchy from Guerlain starts with exhilarating lemon and bergamot. These two create a juicy and delightful twist of sour & bitter tones. Verbena adds mouth-watering sweetness to the scent, making the fragrance smell almost like lemon candy (think Nimm2). Presence of petitgrain adds some leafy verdancy that puts a shade of green between the joyful citrus tonalties. In the drydown Le Frenchy becomes more delicate, floral and slightly soapy thanks to neroli. That note is followed by lavender which, with its floral yet herbaceous aspect, makes the perfume to start veering slightly more masculine. My feeling is then confirmed when sage joins the composition. The latter one adds an aromatic, slightly camphorous facet that after a while turns quite sweaty and dirty. When this impression kicks in, I find Le Frenchy a bit too hard to stand. After a couple of hours the base reveals a woody vetiver, creamy-aromatic tonka and balmy ambergris. But so what if a sweaty odour of sage is that I smell the most? If it wasn’t for such unfortunate change I would probably quite enjoy this Guerlain offering but now that it smells like someone who didn’t wash for a while – I’ll pass.

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Defining Undefined at Pitti Fragranze 2018 – part 3

My second day at Pitti Fragranze was full of interesting and unexpected events. I tried many perfume on that day, met some new people & listened to some interesting conversations and panel discussions that broadened my horizons and taught me new things about scent culture in different parts of the world. In the evening some spontaneous actions resulted in having the most amazing dinner in Florence ever. Surrounded by 4 perfumers, 2 brand owners, fellow blogger and few more people by the table we enjoyed food, drinks and conversations. It was a good day.

Normally at the end of my 2nd day at the fair I would’ve been cautious to not stay out too long. It’s because I always had to pack all my stuff beforehand so that I could leave my rented room early in the morning to arrive at the airport on time. But not this year. Return flights were not in my favor either and Aeroporto di Bologna was closed for a few days including the weekend when I was in Florence. In the end I decided to stay in Italy for a bit longer and fly back home on Tuesday.

Used to having two days to discover things I wanted, this extra day that I got for the first time since I started going to Fragranze was very calm for me. I indeed tried most of the things on Friday and Saturday. In fact I dedicated Sunday to spending more time with people, since it’s them who create the entire atmosphere.After a few years people become more important than perfume. Also for the first time the show wasn’t open to public on final day which was clearly visible in the corridors that were not as crowded as usual. Weird choice to not allow potential costumers to enter.

I didn’t smell so much on that day, only a couple of perfume I missed earlier. For example Jasmagonda, a new proposal from Pierre Guillaume – a Collection Rework composition for Drama Nuui. It was a beautifully clear magnolia & jasmine scent with transparent and delicate facets. I also tested two scents from Parco 1923. Concept of this brand is to use ingredients obtained from plants that only grow in the region of Abruzzo. Fragrances were ok but didn’t stay in my memory. Another new try for me was 401 E. Amatrice. Their only perfume is bearing the same name as the brand and apparently contains 140 ingredients! I’m immune to such talk, how would I smell all that?

After having longer and insightful talks with many people around the fair, especially with Nick from Gallivant came the time to do some commemorative photos with them as well. Luckily nobody opposed. I also stopped by the booth of Map of the Heart, mostly because the other day we were walking down the street in Florence, next to each other and we didn’t recognize each other… They were launching White Heart dedicated to love – with aldehydes, white flowers, lavender and bit of spice. It smelled very unusual. And after recommendation from Alex I also smelled Antonio Alessandria Fara, a sparkling lemonade perfume but with a sweaty cumin undertone in the background. We also tried a range of Abel together. It’s an affordable line of all natural fragrances.

I had a great lunch with Alex Lee at a nearby cafe and a great chat with Stephanie Bakouche regarding my current position at work and how I can make a change. In chat with Cecile Zarokian I tried to find out about her recent work but her lips were sealed. That’s how Fragranze 16 was drawing towards its end. Even though it was open until 6 PM, many brands started packing around 4 PM. Everyone wanted to make it back home as soon as possible after these 3 tiring days.

Observation I (and not just me) made during this edition of Pitti Fragranze was that there was overally less brands exhibiting, fewer people visiting, many people looked tired. Some brands even stated that it’s probably their last time at the Florentine fair. Why? Because TFWA Exhibition (Tax Free World Association) in Cannes was happening only few weeks later. For most there was no reason to exhibit in both places and they opted for Cannes. There’s something else that disturbs me.

The fact is that none of the niche brands is big and rich enough to be able to actually have a stand in the main area at TFWA – this place is dominated by Dior, Guerlain, Chanel and tens of other brands you can see at the airport duty-free. So what niche does? Niche rents hotel suites or yahts to organize little showrooms where you can visit them by appointment. Surely a great way to scoop some audience, especially that masses of people visit Cannes for that exhibition.

I wonder if in next years Pitti Fragranze will slowly start to deteriorate… I sure hope not.

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