Friday, January 11, 2008

MDCI Enlèvement au Sérail (FK3)

Nothing against the bust, but I used to get a plastic bust of a classical composer every year at my piano recital as a reward for a job well done from my teacher. I think I had pretty much all of the famous heavies: Mozart, Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Mendelssohn, Schubert, Debussy, Rachmaninoff...There was nothing quite like practicing the ol' piano with a line of little white men all sizing me up, staring at me. So, busts make me chuckle, maybe a bit nervously but also in the sweetest, most nostalgic way, like reminiscing about Victor Borge skits. In any case, I believe the busts on the MDCI perfume bottles are hand-crafted Limoges or crystal sculptures (you pay for quality at $600 each). It's especially funny to me because the name of this particular MDCI scent is, of course, Mozart's opera, The Abduction from the Seraglio!

I'm very fortunate to have a friend who sent me a generous decant of this hard-to-find fragrance; otherwise, I don't think I would ever have tried it. My dear friend knows I love jasmine. Enlèvement au Sérail, formerly FK3, is a very beautiful though rather angular jasmine-themed perfume. It's also wears like a Fruity Chypre with some spicy aspects, and I can see the comparisons made to Guerlain Mitsouko, especially on dry down. At first, it reminded me more of Caron En Avion with the sharp, coarse quality of Frederic Malle Une Fleur de Cassie. For a fragrance that starts off so sharp, it warms up to a rounder density but it's not at all powdery to me and it stays bold all the way through. It's very sweet and floral, much more so than Mitsouko, with lots of orange-tinged citrus and a sprinkling of spice, on a light base of warm, natural patchouli which, together with the citrus notes, creates the Chypre characteristic. This is an animalic blend and probably not the easiest to wear for most people (remember its resemblance to Une Fleur de Cassie), but if you're a classics fan and you like the bust bottle, this would be an investment that's sure to stand out from the crowd.

However, I feel this one should have been a bust of Mozart, respectfully.

Noteworthy Fragrances blog has more details on how to order a generous 10ml sample set.

(Images: Noteworthy Fragrances,