actually, i have never smelled this, but in the spirit of giving correct information i want to say that bourbon french in fact was *comissioned* by anne rice to develop this perfume. anne rice named it "dark gift" and *that* is why bourbon french (who apparently retained the rights to the formula) cannot sell it under that name.
after reading ayala's description i really need to try it, whatever it is called.
The name (or lack of name) for this perfume is stirring a minor controversy now, because it is not quite clear what the “proper” name is. Originally, it was called “Dark Gift”. But than the infamous vampires Anne Rice has commissioned a perfume of that name from Bourbon French. Now, with her store in New Orleans being open again, and three perfumes by the name “Dark Gift” offered for sale in Eau de Toilette concentration, Bourbon French are no longer allowed to use that name for the fragrance, due to copyright/trademark rights belonging to Anne Rice. But they will know what you are talking about if you order it as a custom perfume. It will simply be labeled as “Custom Perfume”. So perhaps the new name is custom perfume. With your permission, for the convenience of writing this review I will refer to it as “Dark Shift”.
As for the fragrance itself – it announces classicism and vintageness. It felt precious but non pretentious. There is something just slightly aldehydic about it in the opening, like overly ripe yellow peaches mingled with spice and kissing soil soaked with moisture.
As the scent develops, luscious rose petals and iris powder and perhaps even a hint of osmanthus weave through the darkness of patchouli earth tied in vetiver roots and suffocated by bitter myrrh. There is an overall spicess to Dark Shift, although I cannot quite pin-point a particular spice. Allspice is my closest guess, with its equally medicinal-dry and warm-sweet persona.
The drydown reveals a sweetness that is both dark and vanillic. Besides a dark, rich vanilla I can sense the ambery, bittersweetness of tonka bean, and hints of opoponax muskiness.
Even if Dark Shift does not smell identically to New Orleans (it simply hard to imagine it would smell so “perfumey” in its real-life form), it is hard to not smell the connection it has to the musty swampy earth, voodoo and a good gumbo cooking to the sound of jazz.
I am just one step closer to bottling this magical city… But the most important one would be in the form of an airline ticket…
Top notes: Aldehydes, allspice
Heart notes: Rose, Orris, Osmanthus
Base notes: Vetiver, Patchouli, Vanilla, Tonka Bean, Opoponax, Myrrh