I live in a hot climate and cool days giving me a break from the boiling heat are cherished. Leaves are greener, the air fresher and things are dewy. On these days, I think of Poivre Piquant, an old instant love, which has now become a constant yearning- after I received another sample of it. I’ve always loved the smell of freshly ground peppers and here they are, very naked, very real. Only, if I didn’t know about the notes, I would think this is black pepper, which I especially love.
Soon I get a waft of milk chocolate in the air, very approachable, as friendly as a cozy café where people are having hot chocolate on a cold day. It’s interesting that I can’t smell this chocolate at all on my own skin, but get pleasant wafts of it around. If someone asked me what would come after pepper, I would say mint and bitter chocolate but here is Duchaufour’s genius I think, he marvellously contrasts unexpected notes and still comes up with something lovely. Poivre Piquant is not the most seamless or orchestrated fragrance I have ever smellt. It's more like different scenes from a Woody Allen film, but I love it nevertheless.
Once in a while, I come across a Duchaufour fragrance that doesn’t get very high ratings here but transports me to many different places. This time, one journey I have is inward, to that place where I don’t have to ask a man how I smell – many men have a knack for stating the obvious when it comes to fragrance and I’m sure I’d get the response ‘peppery’. This is a place where I love some V-neck jumpers, slightly messy hair and faux-bone reading glasses. It’s a world of bookbinders and endless afternoons. Perhaps a drink, jazz, a friend whose intellect I enjoy as well as her emotions.
On a practical note, Poivre Piquant has been a solo pleasure for me for a long time but I think I have now mustered the courage to wear it in public. I’m not afraid of comments like “what smells like black pepper here?” or “who smells like hot chocolate froth?”. I also layer it with deep, red roses and the result is wonderful. I think both Poivre Piquant and Piment Brulant are full bottle worthy.
Poivre Piquant projects well but lasts around 2 hours on my skin.