Monday, November 17, 2008

Review: ORTIGIA Melograno

More on pomegranates (and Ortigia)! My favorite perfume representation of it so far is Ortigia Melograno. Santa Maria Novella Melograno, I think I prefer as a fragrance, but as a representation of the fruit, Ortigia's is comparatively the truer. However, pomegranate doesn't seem to get translated into scent very faithfully, and even Ortigia's isn't exactly literal, either. But unlike the more common resolutions of it into grenadine, here, the whole of the fruit is captured -- from the dry, bark-like tough peel, to the acidic sweet of the pulp, and the bitterness of the seed and pith. And in Ortigia Melograno, it makes for a somewhat difficult but rather addictive complex of tart yet syrupy yet bitter.

Cold sniff of it is amazingly like the smell of the energy drink Bacchus-D, which is a strange piercing contrast of ginseng and fruit, a little like the intense bitter/sweet contrast of cough syrup. On the skin, the first few moments are somewhat like citrus paint thinner, but that mellows into a general herbal-ish bitterness, and then, a fruity cherry-like tobacco-ish sweetness emerges over the dry, somewhat leathery woods; the final drydown sort of reminds me of the dusty sweetness of the insides of an antique chest of drawers. No idea of its official notes, but it seems to me primarily: pomegranate, dry patchouli, and a touch of labdanum.

It isn't perhaps immediately appealing. And, I think, requires a dark mood. Neither of which is likely to win it legions of fans, but both which of which seem quite appropriate to the pomegranate fruit.

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