Star rating: 5 stars–outstanding/potential classic, 4 stars–very good, 3 stars–adequate, 2 stars–disappointing, 1 star–poor.
Red Delicious for Women, the newest limited edition fragrance from Donna Karan, is a counterpart to Be Delicious (2004), a composition that forges an apple out of violet leaves. The perfumer Maurice Roucel’s choice of accords for Be Delicious is very interesting, since despite the availability of aroma materials that offer a remarkably photorealistic representation of an apple, he selected a green floral, with a rich cucumber undertone. The dewy juiciness of green leaves lends itself to the construction of a green apple that leaves the wearer wondering whether it is a fruit, a flower or a leaf. Despite my minimal interest in the fruity-floral genre, I found myself revisiting Be Delicious on a number of occasions after having been intrigued by its clever composition.
Red Delicious preserves the green crispness of Roucel’s original creation; however, the composition evolves as a more conventional fruity-floral, with the sweet berry notes taming the green cucumbery abstraction into a vision of a ripe red apple. …
The sparkling top accord fizzes gently, before the sweetness of rose redolent lychee rises up dispelling the shimmery effect. The warm oriental base, dominated by musky vanilla, serves to offer a pretty and sweet counterpoint to the fruity-floral accords. I find that while the fruity sweetness seems to create a more coherent image of a luscious apple, lost is the very quality that I enjoyed about the original Be Delicious—the alluring suspense as the violet verdancy slowly softens to reveal a glossy apple. The sweetness ornamenting the original accord merely serves to make it pretty. And there it is—a tempting red fruit, and yet I miss the surprising leafy intensity that in Be Delicious hid the apple from me.
Donna Karan Red Delicious includes notes of champagne accord, lychee, red raspberry, apple, rose, vanilla bean, patchouli, amber, sensual skin accord (musk), raspberry. Available from Sephora, Nordstrom, Saks5thAvenue and other retailers.
Please see other reviews of Maurice Roucel’s creations:
Frédéric Malle Musc Ravageur
Guerlain L’Instant de Guerlain (brief description)
Guerlain L’Instant Eau de Noël Iris Millésime