Day 5 of Annick Goutal Week
La Violette is a beautiful green violet fragrance. It is not an overly candy-sweet powdery plastic thing which I find with many other violet soliflores.
Awhile back I wrote a piece called The Indies Saved Violet for me because at the time I couldn’t stomach violet fragrances and especially not most typical violet soliflores. After some coaching from Brian, I began trying violet fragrances and found I loved La Violette. While Annick Goutal’s La Violette isn’t nearly as edgy as the indie violets I described in my earlier piece, it still remains one of the best of the old school violets. The only other violet soliflore I like as much as the Goutal is Penahligon’s Violette.
Annick Goutal created a series of soliflores in the early 2000’s to include Neroli, Le Chevrefeuille, Le Jasmin, Le Muguet and La Violette. I’m a little confused because I thought Tubereuse and Rose Absolue were part of the Soliflore Collection but they aren't listed as such. I have already written glowing reviews for Neroli and Le Chevrefeille both of which I believe to be the very best in their categories. Le Chevrefeuille is the best honeysuckle fragrance in the world. It smells like honeysuckle iced tea. And it’s heavenly in the summer. Le Chevrefeuille seems simple but I imagine it's not simple at all to make such a beautiful honeysuckle fragrance that doesn’t smell like air freshener. Honeysuckle isn’t a note that translates well in perfumery but it’s sheer perfection when created by Annick Goutal.
La Violette starts off with a blast of violet and violet leaves. It’s green and purple at once. There’s a hint of fruity raspberry and a dash of violet flavored candies. Once dried down La Violette becomes a tad powdery and also a tad more candied – I happen to love this smidgen of powdery candy-ness – it’s just enough to make La Violette charming without being trite or the likes of something a 9 year old flower-girl at a wedding would wear. There’s a dab of clove in the base, if you’re looking for it. Overall I’d describe it as Violet Perrier – it’s fresh, clean, effervescent, green and delightful.
What am I comparing it with? Well, these are the violet soliflores that I’ve also tried: Borsari Violetta di Parma (too plastic-y), Serge Lutens Bois de Violette (go ahead, call the perfume police, I must be crazy but I dislike this combination of cedar and violets), Norma Kamali Violette, L’Artisan Verte Violette (lasts for 11 minutes), i Profumi di Firenze Violetta di Bosco (too cologne-y and masculine), Keiko Mecheri Genie de Bois (ditto what I wrote about the Lutens), Guerlain Meteorites (too powdery), Calypso Violette (too sweet), Histoires de Parfums Blanc Violette (too fleeting and somewhat drab) and so on. The Goutal Violette reaches the perfect pitch of crushed parma violet flowers and leaves rolled in Italian violet candies called Violetta Pastiglie Leone
I find the longevity of La Violette to be shorter than the other Goutals I’ve reviewed this week. If you apply lavishly it’s reasonable – probably lasting about 2.5-3 hours on me after 6-8 sprays.
There is something delightful, charming and cheery about violet fragrances, and Annick Goutal La Violette hits every note effortlessly.
Above photo taken by Susan/The Well-Seasoned Cook on Flikr