Star rating: 5 stars–outstanding/potential classic, 4 stars–very good, 3 stars–adequate, 2 stars–disappointing, 1 star–poor.
The ethereal beauty of Prada Infusion d’Iris contrasted with the bitterness of vetiver and galbanum was such that this fragrance quickly ended up among my top favorites, where it still remains. When I learned that Prada is launching a whole collection, Ephemeral Infusions, based around select raw materials, I immediately started to anticipate the releases. Alas, the first launch, Infusion de Fleur d’Oranger, turned out to be an utter disappointment for me, being reminiscent of Guerlain L’Heure Bleue, with all of its good parts sheared out. The most recent addition, Infusion de Tubéreuse, promised to be more interesting: a crisp green floral, suggesting the verdant tuberose buds, the flowers just before they are about to open. Yet, once again I suffer disappointment and I have to admit that Infusion de Tubéreuse does not captivate me at all, as it somehow does not even recall its namesake, even if you imagine it painted in pastel tones.
The crisp citrusy opening of the fragrance is lovely: airy, bright, with a pleasing effervescence. Of course, the top notes are merely an opening accord, and soon the composition becomes more floral, with the woody-ambery backdrop. The orange blossom, tuberose, rose and various jasmine notes together produce at best a limpid, diluted effect—neither particularly representative of a specific flower, nor memorable in its own genre. The matters do not improve later on in the drydown, when the white musk notes further wash out the composition, settling down like an opaque cloud. A couple of hours into the wear, and I begin to forget the main structure of the fragrance and certainly the fact that it is supposed to do anything with tuberose.
While light tuberose accords carry their own challenges—tuberose is after all a heady, rich note—there are a number of compositions that suggest an idea of a pastel-tinted tuberose much better than Infusion de Tubéreuse. Diptyque Do Son, L’Artisan La Chasse Aux Papillons, Le Labo Tubereuse 40 and Prada Tubereuse No 6 are among the relatively delicate tuberoses that come to mind. They sketch out the airy, radiant shape of a flower rather elegantly, and while doing so, they nevertheless retain the facets that make tuberose such an alluring fragrance note: complexity, character, sensuality and depth.
Prada Infusion de Tubéreuse includes notes of orange blossom, bitter orange, tuberose, petitgrain, blood orange and amber. It is available from Prada boutiques and select department stores (Neiman Marcus, Bergdorf Goodman, Barneys New York.)