Umeshu and apricot .. Fruity Chypre.. Mitsouko’s inprint..
[My MADELEINE|LOVE TIP] In love with apricots? longing to escape? Mellow and round, but also with a touch of darkness and mystery, the combination cardamom-black sesame -blond caramel-umeshu takes me right away to the blurred borders of Far East..
Dream of a fragrance.. Apricot works very well with rosemary or lavender. It lenghthens its taste in a very aromatic way. Cardamom brings in the same effect except for the fact that it propels me somewhere between India and Turkey, to the borders of Asia…Think of coffee, think of byriani… The stewed infused apricot are then wrapped up in a golden precious syrup made of blond caramel with black sesame pepits.
Last a drop of umeshu, subtly soft and sour, perhaps even slightly bitter adds depth and body to the accord.
Dim and intriguing this cardamome-sesame-umeshu combination reminds me of Mitsouko (litteraly means mystery in Japanese). A fruity Chypre where apricot would replace the peach of Guerlain, in which the plum of umeshu also contributes to evoke this olfactive family (remember the fabulous Femme de Rochas?…). As for the bergamot/ oakmoss, it is here boldly replaced by cardamom. Airy and fresh but addictive just like bergamot, complex and persistant like oakmoss..
First mouthful.. If it was a fragrance… sensual but not overpowered by spices, (I told you at the borders of Far East.. remember?) hence not “bluntly” oriental. Very feminine as well – not in a sheer floral way- but in a more enigmatic seducing mode (see this old ad of Mitsouko? even if a bit outdated it still conveys this very “femme” mood, don’t you think?)..
The dream goes on and brings memories of Madame Butterfly .. Notes sailing from Europe to Japan…A drama staging the bitter soft melancholy of umeshu, next to burning passion fueled in by the glowing warmth of apricot and powerful cardamom…
The legendary Mitsouko was one of the first fruity chypre that I discovered, so wonderful on skin.. Even if Coco Mademoiselle and Narcisso Rodriguez shed strong light on this elegant and sophisticated family, I am still yearning for a new fruity chypre that would cast the same spell …
What about you?
Chypres fragrances: do you like them, do you wear them? Apricots : what do you combine them with? Let me know…