Sunday, 26 November 2017

Strange fruit - a review of Angelo di Fiume by Linari

I love fruit. Nothing beats the gastronomic joy of biting into a perfectly ripe mango or sucking bits of tasty seeded slime from the dimpled husk of a passion fruit. 

In the perfume world however, fruit is a frequently occurring whiff on the shelves of high street stores but underrepresented within niche perfumery offerings. Whilst citrus fruits have reigned as King of the top note and formed the backbone of tradition eau de colognes, their sticker siblings have not enjoyed the same favourable treatment  Is it the stigma of fruit being one half of the often derided ‘fruity floral’ genre? As enlightened perfume lovers continue to bore of the same old ‘oud-this’ and ‘amber-that’ there is room for a new trend. And with the possibility of enormous olfactory diversity, I hope to see the pulps, pips and juices stake their claim.

Quirky interpretations of fruity notes do exist right now though, we’ve just got to hunt them down. 

Linari’s Angelo di Fiume is a truly eccentric creation, combining a veritable fruit salad with caramelised smoke and vanilla. Sounds weird? It is. But it’s quite lovely. 

Fragrance Notes

Top: Cherry, Raspberry, Orange, Bergamot

Middle: Ylang Ylang, Jasmine, Caramel, Rose, Green Leaves

Base: Vanilla, Sandalwood, Benzoin, Musk, Patchouli

Upon first spray, you are hit by sweet smoke - imagine a bonfire where dry leaves are coated in caramel. The smokiness is cut through by a fruit abstraction. You can’t detect the individual notes, instead a general air of juiciness announces it’s presence. There is a distinct feel of ‘Christmas market’ to the composition, rendering the whiff pleasingly wintry. 
As it progresses in to dry down, Angelo di Fuime loses the smoky quality and develops an extraordinarily sumptuous base, a perfect vanilla. Not the sweet tooth vanilla of a teen market scent, nor the boozy vanilla of Mona di Orio or L’ Artisan Parfumeur. This is a creamy, woody vanilla harmony, no doubt an atmosphere enhanced by benzoin and sandalwood joining the party.

The overall effect is delightfully decadent.

Linari house their creations in equally decadent bottles. The design has the weighty ice hockey puck feel of Bulgari Black and is topped by a carved wooden lid that would not look out of place in an old fashioned gentlemen's drinking club. The black label is ringed with 22ct gold. The bottles are luxurious, retro and deeply masculine. You would expect this bottle to hold a fragrance entitled ‘oud wood intense extreme noir’. But instead, it houses a fragrance that is unique, creative and a pleasure to the hopeful nose of a 'smelt it all' blogger.

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