Compared to everything from Lea St Barth to Caron Farnesiana, Mazzolari’s Alessandro is another successful almond fragrance — toasted, honeyed and magnificent.
Alessandro opens with every facet glimmering, ready to be appreciated. Golden honey notes layered over a not-too-powdery almond note. Simple, powerful and yes, sweet. I’m a huge lover of almond notes whether they are in the background in perfumes like Hanae Mori, playing a supporting role as in Etro’s Heliotrope, or front and center as in Lothantique’s Sous l’Amandier. I would classify the almond here as a supporting player, second to the honey notes.
Though the fragrance calls to mind many others, what I’m reminded of more than anything else are the midnotes of Molinard’s classic Habanita — I would bet that almond and honey are not the only players on this stage. I sense the presence of heliotrope, tobacco and maybe opoponax (an ambery and sometimes slightly bitter plant resin). The fragrance never really achieves the talcum-like effect that many almond scents tend towards, instead, it heads towards sweet resin territory and surprisingly, it’s only as the scent develops that the floral aspects of the composition become noticeable. Similar in feel but with greater presence than Dior’s Bois d’Argent, Alessandro’s drydown manages to create an almost boozy wood effect — as if I’m sniffing the cask of a sauternes.
At 109 Euros for a 100 ml bottle, the price is pushing the upper limits of “pricey” for a fragrance whose longevity and sillage are both moderate. For buying information, see the listing for Mazzolari under Perfume houses.