There are some perfumers who have a deft touch with some of the most obstreperous materials in perfumery. Two of those materials are paradisone and ambox. The former is the amped up version of the synthetic jasmine hedione. The latter is the desiccated synthetic wood which has ruined many a perfume with its crushing presence. When I see an ingredient list containing both, I expect to get slapped on one cheek and then the other. Which was what faced me when my sample of Mizensir Vert Empire arrived.
Mizensir is the perfume brand founded by perfumer Alberto Morillas. For the last six years he has been designing perfumes which feature the synthetic palette. It has been an excellent collection that even when I don’t care for one, I do learn a bit more about the featured synthetics. With Vert Empire I must admit I was hoping in the hands of a Master Perfumer I might learn to love, or at least tolerate these twin sledgehammers.
The concept is this is the scent of a citrus grove at the beginning of spring. Just as the fruits begin to ripen on the trees of the orchard. My S. Florida childhood found me in citrus orchards just as the growing season began. The familiar citrus is still a bit green. Its lurking underneath but not quite there. M. Morillas interprets that for this perfume.
That green with the citrus peeking out shows in the top accord. Orange and petitgrain give the twin sources of citrus. The orange is more zest than pulp. The petitgrain is a focused source of lemon. He wraps them in green cardamom, angelica root, and sage. They provide the “vert”. The citrus plays a supporting role to them.
Now is when the paradisone is used. This is one of the most expansive florals a perfumer has. It is like blowing up a balloon with jasmine-scented helium. You must stop just as the globe is filled and doesn’t pop. This is what happens. The paradisone takes this concentrated green and citrus to an airier gentle place. A breeze through the orchard carrying blossom and young fruit.
The base is sandalwood fortified with ambrox while being warmed by benzoin. Here M. Morillas uses the ambrox to provide a pleasing aridity to the woody base.
Vert Empire has 10-12 hour longevity and average sillage.
I am not sure there are many perfumers who could have made me enjoy a perfume featuring these two ingredients. M. Morillas again shows me there is a way. Especially in this case it felt like paradisone found.
Disclosure: This review is based on a sample provided by Mizensir.