As much as I love to mingle in crowds and lose myself into deafening noises, I also adore to sink into clouds of silence. Soft, flexible and transparent balloons I can use as a barely detectable defense wall between me and the world. They provide me with both visibility and protection at the same time. Some perfumes offer a similar sensation, or ease my occasionally vain attempts, presenting the essence of the silence themselves.
Poivre Piquant de L’Artisan Parfumeur, skillfully brought to life by one of the perfumers I worship, Bertrand Duchaufour, is that astoundingly silent, but noticeable and idiosyncratic fragrance of a kind.
Wrap my fingers in chocolate foil,
and let their tips seesaw over
the gruff line of your jaw,
the pricks of your eye lashes,
the downy cushions of your pinnae,
and then dope off on your hyperventillated chest,
and slumber in cogent and tame fatigue.
The scent itself
Poivre Piquant is a nymph of ever-changing emotions. The initial agitation of an impatiently torn foil of a high-class dark chocolate takes turns with the lulling melody of rubber-powdery vegetation, bouncing happily on my nose-brain connective strings like a plastic beach ball. The cool hoarse whisper of ground peppercorns sways smoothly between milky, soapy and woody tune cycles, and then they all peacefully conclude into a canoodling musk duvet with filling of Bavarian vanilla cream, and handfuls of dried honeysuckle blossoms and single petals of garden pinks.
I can assort Poivre Piquant onto a shelf of skinscents, in spite of its surprising outbursts of synthetic piercings, provoked by times of high humidity, or busy schedule. My two adjectives for it are “comforting” and most recognizably – “milky” – like a baby’s head, a purring cat’s fur, the bed linen left unchanged over a week, or a jazz standard sung by Diana Krall.
Smelled in the air from a distance, Povre Piquant reminisces about a gone-cold masala tea, served on a precious sandalwood tray. Getting closer means that the spice come out more vividly, the masculinity glows a bit stronger, and a sign of pungency finds its way onto the epidermis. Poivre Piquant is unsuspectedly sexy rendition of the pepper note, tough low-key and genderless. It works its magic, when people interfere with each others aura, no matter accidentally or on purpose. This fragrance is an example of rare mastery in the perfume world, making a Dr. House-pronunciation-like scent composition be smelled, heard and valued.