Friday, July 29, 2016

An encounter between two symbols of excellence: Baccarat Rouge 540 by Maison Francis Kurkdjian



Few weeks ago when I walked in Harvey Nichols to see what's up among new flacons, my eyes suddenly detected an outstanding display among Maison Francis Kurkdjian booth. A scarlet label honored with the same name and font of prestigious Parisian house of crystals and jewels of Baccarat. I immediately got a couple of samples after first try. I can't clearly say it was a distinct work from other members of MFK collection in the first whiff but it gave me something new which I have been waiting from this house for a long.


Baccarat celebrates its 250th anniversary with an eponymous eau de parfum presented in only 250 flacons. I have not seen the original flacon but the pictures published on internet show an extremely glamorous hand made bottle with a crimson crystal needle to rub the perfume on skin. The fragrance which has been launched in 2014 has released again in Maison Francis Kurkdjian settings in greater number. In fact the actual perfume seems to be a semi-bespoke they dealt to introduce to public. A fragrance that should evoke blend of clear crystal and 24 carat gold powder mingled in 540 degree, a scarlet smell, a warm sensual art piece of glass.


I remember this amazing citrus opening with blood orange and silent citrus peel the day I gave it a go for the first. Same fluent citrus and sugary notes plus warm jasmine, the top layer has an impatient sparkling aura like bubbles of champagne trapped underneath cork! Champagne is a polite note. It brings ready-to-made luxury and divine class with kind of cute naughtiness. You feel a cogent luxury in the beginning, a transparent and gentle aura presenting a settled fame and prestige. This of course could not be materialized by a natural jasmine, cause this tiny flower bears wild indolic carnality. Therefore, hedione® is employed to fabricate jasmine and evoke sense of opulence. This note has also more vivid texture than natural jasmine. Mature sugary (and almost leathery) dimensions which I guess to be from saffron notes (as appeared bolder in Carolina Herrera CH Men) develops the opening into grown and wealthy level. It also is an introduction for ambery heart (the house declared woody amber or ambergris and Fragrantica declares amberwood) and I get more creamy, wealthy, feminine, rich, saline ambergris notes. This amberosial atmosphere has faint woodsy base, yet until the very deep dry down it is jasmine and citrus accord who define amber's identity with sheer floral and translucent citrus features.


Baccarat Rouge 540 is a super luxury yet modest woody floral fragrance which doesn't tend to over-expose. What is luxurious, appeals by default. This is the logic! And you see how eluding this logic is! The fragrance has an extremely comfortable, pleasing and trust-giving air which is more uplifted in cold weather, yet controlled use in warm (not so humid or hot like Dubai) brings the gem to the extent of seductive sillage. For floral and wood/amber theme it may leans more to feminine but it's not a mere tendency. It looks more feminine because of wealthy dose of ambergris and un-indolic jasmine.

Francis Kurkdjian himself has my utmost sense of wonder. He's a genius nexus who brings classic perfumery in modern boundaries and excels first hand luxurious compositions. Some of his creations nail the top (like the actual fragrance or Satin Oud), some others, like Aqua Universalis Forte, lack identity and integrity as to be produced halfway. I'm sure I'm not the only one who thinks this way about the justly talented nose. Many perfumistas believe many niche perfumeries (including this house) have reached to an end and have faced the same flaws that the so called designer ones did, yet they run the business with price hoax. Unfortunately, I join them in many examples and some of Kurkdjian's works potentially increase the same judgement. Not about Baccarat Rouge 540. It's a liquid gold made by most measured materials.

Carpe Odor!

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