Here we go, back in the saddle after a short breakaway and I've been meaning to talk about the new Eau de Citron Noir Fragrance from Hermes for some time, so let's get into it.
The bottle has a tapered-tubular aesthetic. The shoulders are rounded and almost sits on the shelf like a small gentleman with his arms tucked squarely behind his back and it houses a blue liquid that has an iridescent quality to it.
I'm not sure who designed the bottle but it's worth noting the head perfumer is no longer Jean-Claude Ellena, but Christine Nagel. According to some sources Jean-Claude Ellena is now semi-retired and only does a perfume once every two years.
Here's what Christine Nagel has to say about the release.
"Following a path through the olfactory universe of hesperidia led me into a vast world, dotted with surprises, with citrus fruits. Finger lime, Buddha's hand fruit, Eureka lemon... So many unusual varieties of citrus appealed to me, but it was the smoky and distinguished black lime that finally stood out as the key note."
Christine Nagel Hermès head perfumer
What can I expect from HERMES Eau de Citron Noir Fragrance?
It has a great opening. Plenty of citrus, a touch of orange but all play second fiddle to a phenomenal lemon note. It lingers for about 20 minutes, it has a fresh delivery and then it evolves into a smoky-masculine metamorphosis.
Here's where I have a slight issue with the scent. It doesn't really punch through with the weight of an authentic woody aroma. There is a little synthetic, almost faux-leather feel about the scent and it dissipates rather quickly.
On the Hermes website it evangelises about going from 'midday to-midnight' which is also slightly disingenuous. I lost all feel for the perfume after 5 hours and for the price point, the silage should have the legs for 6-7 hours.
Would I buy this bottle?
If this Perfume was a James Bond movie, then it would be The World is not Enough. It has one of the best openings I've ever seen, then gets formulaic the more it goes on. I'd buy this bottle now and again for that opening, but know that this wasn't Pierce's best. (Hope that makes sense).
What do other people say?
I've had some good feedback. Only at a meeting today I was asked what I was wearing. (In a good way). And you know it's good when they ask to come in for a closer smell. (It was an informal meeting).
Online I've found the reviews to be mixed. I did like one review that said 'it smells like the inside of a well-used, wooden Indian spice box that's held a variety of spices for decades.'
Available in 50ml and 100ml £48 and £96