Perfume Review: Parfum d'Empire Eau de Gloire, Eau Suave and Iskander
Parfum d’Empire are the creators of my beloved Ambre Russe and my new mad crush, Cuir Ottoman. I like those two scents so much that I tend to overlook the other three fragrances in the line. This review is a salute to Eau de Gloire, Eau Suave and Iskander.
Eau de Gloire is a homage to Napoleon Bonaparte. Inspired by his love for colognes, it has notes of Corsican everlasting flowers, cistus, oakmoss, anise, tea, licorice, incense and tobacco. This is not your average understated and fresh eau de cologne. Eau de Glorie is full of character and has a solid, substantial feel. The top notes are bracing and cool, the heart is rather sweet, heavy on anise and as forceful, domineering and passionate as the emperor himself must have been. This stage is Too Much for me, I find the anise to be overwhelming. The drydown, however, is incredibly gorgeous. It is dark and husky, with lots of sweet tobacco and some incense. To my nose, it has a very attractive leathery undertone. For that drydown alone I am prepared to tolerate the cloying middle stage. Wearing Eau de Gloire makes me suffer from folie de grandeur, an affliction I quite frankly enjoy.
Eau Suave is inspired by Empress Josephine and her love for roses. Having read about the inspiration, I was afraid the scent would turn out to be a rose soliflore, a genre I find very dull, but the scent is much more than just roses. It is a sophisticated, warm composition, in which the dark-red flowers are basking in the golden glow of saffron and are sweetened by honeyed apricots and raspberries. It is darkly-boozy and gorgeous. The fans of rose perfumes must try Eau Suave. For me, it is a little too sweet and a little too heavy on fruits, but, although I have no wish to actually wear it, I admire it a lot.
Iskander, dedicated to Alexander the Great, is a blend of citron, mandarin, grapefruit, estragon, coriander, orange blossom, oakmoss, amber and musk. It is my second favorite of the line (the first place being shared by Ambre Russe and Cuir Ottoman). Iskander is bracing, fresh, herbal, slightly spicy and has an unexpectedly warm, slightly earthy base. The grapefruit note is bright and tangy, the coriander is sweetly-piquant, the musk is ever so slightly “dirty”. The scent is not as potent as Eau de Gloire, but in its own, rather more understated, way, it is just as full of character. Layered together, Iskander and Eau de Glorie fill the wearer with the sense of enormous self-importance and give one the urge to conquer if not the whole world then at least a couple of countries.
Eau de Gloire, Eau Suave and Iskander are available at Aedes, $110 for 3.4oz..