Keiko Mecheri: 3 posts

Keiko Mecheri Un Jour d’Ete : Fragrance Review

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Un Jour d’Été (A Summer Day) is the newest release from Keiko Mecheri, the prolific Los Angeles-based line whose powdery Loukhoum became a huge cult hit a decade ago.  Mecheri calls Un Jour d’Été a hesperidic fragrance, “an escape in the South of France, on the beaches of St. Tropez.”  This summer day revolves around coconut, a note that Mecheri handles well enough to evade the black, oily flatness and plasticity that a coconut note can impart.  This is done primarily through macerating the coconut in citrus and by evoking European tanning lotions through the use of monoi (tiare seeped in coconut oil).

Although perhaps not intentional, a patchouli base reads as brown and leathery. Here is where a definite image is called to mind—those overly bronzed beach bodies under a relentless sun that used to be part of escapist fantasy but that now just seem imprudent.

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Britney Spears In Control Curious, Keiko Mecheri Ume, Provocative Woman: One Euphoria Too Many

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

In an ironic twist, a niche perfume I sampled recently turned out to be similar to a mass market release, and a mass market fragrance reminded me of a niche perfume. The niche perfume in question is Keiko Mecheri Umé, which created for me a distinct first impression reminiscent of Calvin Klein Euphoria. Although Umé lacks the patchouli-amber base, the transparent exotic fruity accord resting on velvety woody notes is very much in the spirit of Euphoria. Except that Euphoria is much more appealing to me, especially given its competitive price points.

However, a surprise was awaiting me in a bottle that looked so disconcerting that it was almost impossible to ignore its poisonous pink and jet black hues. In Control Curious is the latest offering by Britney Spears and a limited edition flanker to the first Curious, a fruity-floral composition of magnolia and pear resting on vanilla musk. …

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Keiko Mecheri Gourmandises : Perfume Review

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

Keiko Mecheri Gourmandises always makes me think of trying rose rahat lokum for the first time in Istanbul. Amid the marketplace, with its diverse noises, rapidly spoken sentences of bargaining partners, endless stream of people, clinking of cups containing dark tea, smells of cumin, fenugreek and grilled kebabs, the sensual sweetness of rose scented delicacies stands out as a vibrant memory. Whether it was really the most amazing thing I have tasted hardly matters.

Gourmandises, created by Yann Vasnier in 2004, is a fragrance that embodies both a concept of travel via scent and of abstract dessert. For all of its sweet notes (praline, bitter almonds, rose jam), it is not a conventionally gourmand fragrance. It does not smell of any particular dessert, but its dark sweetness with a somber, rich rose note hints at the presence of a mouthwatering confection. It opens up on a lush red rose heated by the sun. Rose petals are then immersed into sugar syrup, which is underscored by saffron. Saffron is what conjures a vision of jalebi, a North Indian dessert of golden fritters soaked in saffron syrup—a delectable interplay between crispy exterior with the soft spongy center. Shedding its radiant sweetness, Gourmandises caramelizes into a darker, spicier composition.

The drydown offers a whisper of my memory of rahat lokum, its sinful sweetness folded into the opulence of rose. Creamy richness embellished with sugared rose petals and bitter almonds is very enticing. Suddenly, I envision myself in Poona shopping for a sari—the rolls of brocaded silk and lavishly embroidered georgette are unfolded in quick succession. Next door is a halwai shop, the scents of its sweet offerings reaching the fabric store. Sumptuous color of silk, shimmer of gold embroidery, fragrance of almond fudge and rose syrup soaked milk balls are blurred in a mélange of sensory images that both overwhelm and mesmerize me.

Gourmandises is certainly a sweet fragrance, however what keeps it from becoming cloying is a beautiful medicinal tinge of saffron. A small amount suffices to be embraced by this comforting and sensual composition.

Photo: rose rahat lokum, lannicesnyman.com.

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