My garden is crazy with roses these days. They splash pink and mauve near the street and waft fruity, peppery fragrance to my neighbors’ porches. I’m greedy with them, and four vases of Madame Isaac Pereire, La Reine Victoria, and Jude the Obscure in varying stages of decrepitude crowd the dining room table (I love their perfume best just as they start to shrivel), and another few vases are crammed on the mantle.
But other than on the stem, the scent of roses doesn’t move me. Sure, I love the occasional spritz of Guerlain Nahéma when I’m feeling over the top, and a dose of Parfum d’Empire Eau Suave is marvelously fresh on a warm day, but otherwise rose can feel institutional and even dowdy. But now, when my garden is flush with roses, it seems right to revisit two often overlooked rose-centered fragrances: Lancôme Miracle and Estée Lauder Intuition…
Giorgio Armani Acqua di Giò is 17 years old. And as I wore the fragrance for this week’s review, I came to feel 17 is the perfect age for the Acqua di Giò wearer, too, because Acqua di Giò smells “immature” and a bit “simple” (I won’t/can’t say “innocent” because I don’t believe many innocent 17-year-old guys exist anymore!) Though I happily (and confidently) wear all manner of fresh, citrus/floral colognes, Acqua di Giò is so adolescent, so connected to a specific time and perfume “Age,” I don’t feel comfortable wearing it.
Acqua di Giò was released in 1996*; the perfume starts with sharp citrus aromas blending with neroli. The opening has a warm vibe; this is not a cool/cold perfume. Next up is a “water” note: a bit floral, a bit calone-ish. Some old ingredients lists say cyclamen is in Acqua di Giò, and certainly clean/clear cyclamen is more apt a description for what I smell than fleshy and dense “persimmon” (which Armani lists as a note; is this a translation or botanical error?) Acqua di Giò’s base is so well blended no note stands out…there’s just a pleasant accumulation of fresh aromas: vaguely woody, vaguely floral. I would categorize this as a perfect teen cologne — for either sex…
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