Wednesday, July 7, 2010
Penhaligon's - Orange Blossom
Originally created in 1976 for their Anthology line, Penhaligon's classic Orange Blossom has been updated by the famous perfumer Betrand Duchaufour. You can watch a video of M. Duchaufour describing Orange Blossom on the Penhaligon's site.
In the video, Duchaufour talks about how he wanted to modernize the perfume by giving is a more "contrastic" structure and richer notes. I don't know what the original was like, but this orange blossom feels quite sheer.
The top notes have a sharp lemony citrus. Duchaufour speaks of adding a "leafy green" top note, and I do smell a little green here and it's also a little spicy.
In the heart Duchaufour added jasmine to the main orange blossom note, as well as other florals, but I think it's mainly the orange blossom and jasmine that I smell. He mentions adding a couple of florals that aren't in the official list, such as honeysuckle, narcissus and gardenia. I get a little of the narcissus, which has a feeling of pollen and once in a while, if I sniff deeply, I catch a hint of a rich gardenia.
To the base, he added "woody" notes and vanilla to make it more sensuous and comforting. What I mainly smell in the drydown is light, sweet wood and a slightly orangey vanilla. It is comforting.
On the whole, Orange Blossom is a light, refreshing, slightly sweet white floral with the barest hint of orange. It rests over my skin like a veil and is perfect in the muggy Toronto summer heat. Just a dab from the sample was not enough - I really have to pour it on to get the full effect - but it lasts all day and wafts up gently from my wrists as I write this. I might buy a full bottle and spray myself from head to toe this summer.
Perfume: Orange Blossom
Nose: Bertrand Duchaufour
Head Notes: Neroli, Violet leaf, Bergamot, Lemon-cedrat, Cardamom absolute, Pink berries
Heart Notes: Orange absolute, Egyptian jasmine absolute, Tuberose absolute, Rose essence, Peach flower, Orchid
Base Notes: Sandalwood, Virginian cedar, White musk, Vanilla
Art: Mockingbirds on Orange Blossom by Albert Earl Gilbert