Caron: 20 posts

Caron Bellodgia : Perfume Review

44444

Look closely at the Lady with the Unicorn tapestries. Among flowers intertwining around the woman, unicorn and lion, and creating an enchanted atmosphere, tiny dianthus, clove pink, is the most prominent. Likewise, Caron Bellodgia is a fragrance of dreams. It bridges the light and the dark and creates a masterful olfactory chiaroscuro. Bellodgia is a memory of a traveler, capturing the vision of an Italian town on Lake Como, Belladgio. Created in 1927 by Ernest Daltroff, genius perfumer and the founder of Caron, the composition features carnation, jasmine, rose, lily of the valley, violet, sandalwood, vanilla and musk.

Lady with unicorn

The top notes are of the powdery carnation which gains a slight peppery bite as the fragrance settles. The jasmine, lily of the valley and rose undulate out of carnation accord one after another creating an interesting composition that changes over time, from one note to another and back, like piano bars being hit by an impatient finger. The dry down is an interplay of warm and musky against cool and mossy. The dark Caron undercurrent whispers of dusky cloisters of medieval churches and throws into relief the gentle sweetness flowers, still hot from the midday sun. Bellodgia may seem soft and simple at first, but over time it reveals its sensuality.

I forgot to add that my preferred concentration is the extrait de parfum; the Eau de Parfum is bland in comparison. As Octavian noted in the comments, it was introduced in 1996, after being reformulated and augmented with the green tea notes.

Note on reformulation May 2011: A carnation gold standard, Bellodgia has been made less spicy and dark over time, but it still preserves its petal rainstorm impression. While I miss the original’s smoldering spicy darkness, I still enjoy the bright rose-carnation accord in the current version. The parfum is richer and warmer, while the Eau de Toilette has a pleasant green note adorning the spicy floral heart.

Image: The Lady and the Unicorn, “Sight” silk tapestry on wood, end of the 15th century, Musée Moyenage, Paris. Discovered by Prosper Mérimée in 1841 in Boussac castle, the tapestries became famous due to the works by George Sand. The amount of detail on the tapestries, as well as hidden allegory, is breathtaking. I must have spent more than an hour at the tapestry gallery, amazed by the vibrant colors and the delicate expressions on the faces of the lady and the mysterious animals. Interestingly enough, the bottom end of the tapestries, which currently appears dark pink underwent restoration. However, synthetic colors could not match the vibrancy of the vegetal dye used by the Flemish weavers. Over time, the restored part faded, while the original remained vivid.

Caron Poivre and Coup de Fouet : Perfume Review

55555

Caron_poivre

Original:

Rated 4.5 out of 5.0

Reformulation:

Star rating: 5 stars–outstanding/potential classic, 4 stars–very good, 3 stars–adequate, 2 stars–disappointing, 1 star–poor.

“Crack of the Whip” is a name befitting this outstanding Caron creation. After the sharp burst of pepper, the chill of floral notes ornamented by spicy iridescence begins to unravel. Carnation blossoms out of the spicy tulle and grows more and more voluptuous and sweet, before suddenly bursting into a layers and layers of sweet and translucent petals. As quickly as carnation appears, the next wave brings an additional layer of spicy warmth. It fuses the elements of the composition together, adding sweetness where it was lacking and smoothing the spicy edges before they start to burn. After the carnation petals are swept away by the warm breath, the sweet smoky notes of incense start to swirl in delicate patterns. Opoponax (sweet myrrh) is what lends a subtly sweet, balsamic quality to the dry down, forcing flowers to lose their demure quality and peppers to freeze into an intricate spicy balance.

Those who are afraid of Caron’s darkness and now-unfashionable mossiness should explore Coup de Fouet, which is a wonderful example of why classical compositions can withstand the ever changeable fashion. It is refined without being aloof and timeless without being dated. A true Caron gem! However, please give the top notes a chance to perform their transformations before making a verdict.

Poivre is the extrait de parfum version of Coup De Fouet, and as expected, it is richer and more cerebral. It takes longer to make its acquaintance, with the sweet incense notes I liked being darker and more vibrant contrast with the rest of the composition. Both were created by Michel Morsetti in 1954.

Notes: red pepper, black pepper, giroflore, carnation, ylang ylang, opoponax, sandalwood, vetiver, oakmoss.

On Reformulation (March 2011):

Wearing the original Poivre is an exhilarating experience that can only be compared to biting into a black peppercorn crust atop steak au poivre. The spicy rose underscoring the fiery pepper and woods lent the composition a certain dark vision of glamor. The current version is more pink than crimson, and as such, its beauty has been lost. The cinnamon, clove and pepper notes are quite attenuated, with the final result verging on bland. Coup de Fouet is the Eau de Toilette version of Poivre and it is even thinner.

Caron Tubereuse : Fragrance Review

33333

Anna pavlova costume giselle

Star rating: 5 stars–outstanding/potential classic, 4 stars–very good, 3 stars–adequate, 2 stars–disappointing, 1 star–poor.

Caron Tubereuse is a fragrance I often think in terms of dance. Reading perfume reviews I am always struck by a variety of references to capture scent. Music language of chord, tremolo, crescendo and modulation; gustatory of bitter, sweet, sour; visual of matte, transparent, iridescent… The list is endless, and is contingent upon a reviewer’s way of identifying sensations and connecting with the world. At the same time, it also underscores the inadequacy of our language to capture scent.

Continue reading →

Caron Acaciosa : Fragrance Review

33333

One cannot deny perfumer Ernest Daltroff’s genius in reinterpreting classical compositions and making floral bouquets seem like Impressionist paintings. When making a jasmine focused fragrance in 1929, he added a large quantity of synthetic component mimicking the scent of a pineapple. Jasmine in nature possesses a fruity note, and Caron Acaciosa presents it in the most delicate way.

Acaciosa

Upon application the green notes are vivid, and as they gradually dissipate the opulence of jasmine resurfaces. Ylang ylang, lily of the valley and mimosa add to the floral bouquet. The pineapple becomes more pronounced in the heart. The delicate harmony of floral notes is my favorite aspect of Acaciosa. The drydown of heavy amber and resinous woods is much less interesting, and while the composition is pleasant, it is not distinctive.

Notes: rose, jasmine, lily of the valley, orange blossom, ylang ylang, pineapple, jasmine, sandalwood, amber, vanilla, musk.

On Reformulation (12/7/2010):
The original Acaciosa is a jasmine-orange blossom composition with an intense animalic note of leather and musk. The latest version misses the dark amber and animalic facets almost entirely, which makes Acaciosa a pretty, but unremarkable jasmine.

Caron N’Aimez Que Moi and Aimez Moi : Perfume Review

44444

N’Aimez Que Moi

In 1917, Ernest Daltroff creates a fragrance that captured the promises made by the couples separated by the WWI to remain loyal and to await the return of the loved ones from the front. N’Aimez Que Moi was the name given to  this new perfume by Caron. “Love Only Me!” Alas, it is not a promise I can make. While undoubtedly beautiful, N’Aimez Que Moi is too heavy and powdery even for this fan of makeup-like notes in perfume. The top notes are of creamy rose and violet intertwined with soft lilac. The lush floral bouquet is wrapped in sandalwood and cedar, with an accent of earthy vetiver and iris. Unfortunately, that’s when the fragrance becomes unbearably powdery and opaque, and N’Aimez Que Moi and I part ways.

Aimez moi

Continue reading →

From the Archives

Latest Comments

Latest Tweets

Design by cre8d
© Copyright 2005-2022 Bois de Jasmin. All rights reserved. Privacy Policy